Aside from my sister, I am the least film-literate person I know. Until I went to college, I can honestly say that I had seen only a handful of movies: "Saturday Night Fever", the original "Star Wars", "Rocky", "Pete's Dragon", National Lampoon's "Vacation", and a movie that played every day, all day, on HBO in the 80's called, "Shoot the Moon" with Diane Keaton and Albert Finney.
In university, I miraculously fell in (and ended up living) with a gang of film and art majors. I went from having seen a total of 6 movies, to being strapped to a chair with my eyelids propped open with toothpicks (see, I've seen "A Clockwork Orange" by now!) and fed a constant stream of Stan Brakhage, Passolini, Bunuel, David Lynch, Vertov, and my personal favorites--Alejandro Jodorowsky and John Waters.
I was at the mercy of the aesthetics of my friends. They were more interested in experimental film that involved a lot of flickering lights and/or industrial music. I preferred things with a little more narrative--preferably narrative that involved deviant behavior and psychological perversion. That is probably why I fell in love with the movies of John Waters, but never even heard of Jacques Demy or the rest of the French New Wave.
All of that changed a number of years later, after I had moved to San Francisco and had new cosmopolitan, bon-vivant friends (I'm talking about you, Jone and Koren!!) It was in SF that I was exposed to the film musicals of Jacques Demy.
Combine a little John Waters ("Pink Flamingos", "Female Trouble", etc.) with the campy-ness of an overly dramatic movie where every line of dialogue is sung in French, add a bunch of circus weirdos performing amazing acrobatic feats and you have "Parasols of Baltimore"
Psst . . . Looks like some other people are also inspired to re-make Jacques Demy films! I found this little gem during my research and i LOVE IT.