Not only is noise =/= film grain, but film doesn't always have a washed out, low contrast, old and crappy look to it. I don't know where people got that idea. Even seen velvia or ektar?
For one, I think a lot of people try to emulate portra. I've only shot a few rolls of the new portra, but it's like impossible to get the wrong exposure. So much dynamic range, assuming you're not a derp when exposing and it's properly exposed. But even with a largely varied scene brightness, the final image is good.
So what you're looking for is one: dynamic range, which people try to fake by lowering the contrast and making the images have no black point. Shadow/highlight works to some extent, please don't go overboard cause it looks like shit.
Second thing is color, depends on your camera. It's hard to describe, but digital images have a strange color pallet. Each sensor has it's own preferences, mine tend to be a bit greener and less blue than I'd like. Portra is know for it's more neutral pallet, if you were shooting NC. Now I guess it's magically vivid and neutral at the same time. Don't just slide saturation down. Not only does it look "digital" but it's easy to spot. I like the way I got this shot
in terms of color, on my mbp screen anyway. This too
. And that is from an s70 point and shoot from 2004.
Adding noise is a whole other matter, I generally don't mess with that.