The French parliament is called the Fifth Republic. The parliament in France is different from a number of other European governments. The French parliament is semipresidential with a president voted in by the people.
Once the president is voted in, he serves a term that was changed from the traditional 7 years to 5 at the turn of the century. The president has a number of appointments to make as well. While the government in France can be voted out by the parliament, the president actually elects the prime minister and cabinet. The president can ask the prime minister to step down immediately if they are both from the same party with no voting needed.