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Inside Move: Reels on wheels

Onboard pics pick up steam on Gallic rails

If you’ve simply had it with the French countryside, Gaul’s national railway, SNCF, sympathizes.

Since July, ticketholders on the highspeed TGV routes between Paris and Marseilles have been able to substitute the film of their choice for that pesky rolling scenery, thanks to CineTrain.

For 59 francs ($8), passengers can rent a portable DVD player along with their pick of 140 DVD titles. Each film’s running time is conveniently posted and a second set of headphones is available for $3.

At your destination, dropping off the gear is as handy as ditching a rental car. Should you neglect to return the equipment, CineTrain has the imprint of your credit card. They’ll simply deduct 12,000 francs ($1,645) for the player plus the retail price of the disc.

Statistics are not yet available on how many passengers with seats in a smoking car have rented “The Insider” (which, at 157 minutes, is only practical to take in between Paris and Marseilles).

SNCF hopes to extend the service to more TGV routes, meaning travelers may be able to rent last year’s Cannes pics en route to the Riviera next May.

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