Ten choices for the French Film Festival of the Alliance française 2022
The 33rd Alliance Française French Film Festival comes to an end on March 9. It’s time to escape from the daily grayness in the delights of French cinema. The funny, the romantic, the dark and twisted and everything in between. Pure escapism at its finest.
With a complete program of 42 films, artistic director Karine Mauris offers you the ten must-see films this year:
LOST ILLUSIONS (Australian premiere)
Lucien de Rubempré, a young popular poet, is madly in love with Baroness Louise de Bargeton. The risk of scandal forces them to flee to Paris where they hope to live and love freely. Lucien is soon rejected and loses the Baroness’ support. He finds himself alone, penniless, hungry and humiliated until the day he seeks revenge by writing controversial but banal articles. Inside coveted Paris, he finds a cynical world where everything – and everyone – can be bought and sold. Will he be able to find his way and stay true to his hopes and dreams…?
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YOUNG LOVERS (Australian premiere)
The long-awaited sequel to Just to be sure, a modern, nuanced romantic drama about a woman who embarks on an affair with a younger man. Elegant retired architect Shauna (Ardant) crosses paths with Pierre (Poupaud), a happily married doctor in his forties, who had first impressed her during a brief encounter 15 years earlier. The two are quite troubled to see each other again and begin an affair. As Pierre’s family life is soon turned upside down, Shauna struggles with feelings she thought were in the past.
WAITING FOR THE BOJANGLES (Australian premiere)
Fiery and eccentric, Waiting for Bojangles is a passionate love story adapted from the internationally bestselling novel of the same title by Olivier Bourdeaut. Seen through the eyes of their son, Gary, Camille (Virginie Efira) and Georges (Romain Duris) dance to their favorite song Mr Bojangles in their beautiful Paris apartment. Their love is magical, dazzling, a perpetual celebration. Camille sets the tone, an unpredictable and extravagant wisp. One day, however, she goes too far, forcing Georges and Gary to go to great lengths to avoid the inevitable at all costs. Enjoy a whimsical and melancholic tale of mad love, bright and tender, an enchanting film with elegant cinematography.
LOVE SONGS FOR TOUGH GUYS
Starring a delightful ensemble cast led by the fabulous François Damiens and Vanessa Paradis, Samuel Benchetrit’s hilarious new romantic comedy is a charming and loving tale of a disparate group of ordinary people finding love and fulfillment through to an unexpected source: the arts.
In the port city of Dunkirk, tired crime boss Jeff has a big problem: Young punks are jostling his turf. But Jeff is distracted: he has fallen in love with Roxane, a supermarket cashier whom he adores from afar. Taking inspiration from Cyrano’s playbook, he tries to win her heart by writing love poems, but lacks the courage to deliver them.
LA TRAVIATA, MY BROTHERS AND ME
La Traviata tells the story of 14-year-old Nour, who dreams of becoming the new Luciano Pavarotti. Between her work and rising tensions at home, Nour dreams of escaping to a distant place. When he crosses paths with an opera singer who gives summer classes, he finally finds the opportunity to come out of his shell and explore new horizons. Avoiding clichés, the filmmaker presents an inspiring slice of life film filled with tender and moving moments.
Alain Delon was incredibly handsome when noon purple was released and made him an instant star. This mature and colorful adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s vicious novel The talented Mr. Ripley, directed by René Clément, stars Delon as Tom Ripley, a deceitful American charmer in Rome on a mission to bring his evil, privileged acquaintance Philippe Greenleaf back to the United States.
What initially seems like a tale of carefree friendship soon turns into a thrilling saga of seduction, impersonation and murder. noon purple is crafted with a light touch that allows it to be both suspenseful and erotic, and it gave Delon the role of a lifetime. A brand new remastered version of this masterpiece.
THE KITCHEN BRIGADE
The sequel to the box office success of Petit Invisible, The Kitchen Brigade (La Brigade), explores the world of French gastronomy while tackling issues of social justice and inclusion through the story of Cathy, an unyielding 40-year-old sous-chef, finally realizing her lifelong dream of opening her own upscale restaurant.
Things don’t go as planned. Faced with serious financial difficulties, she reluctantly accepts a job in the cafeteria of a hostel for young migrants. Although she hates the new job at first, Cathy’s remarkable skills and passion for cooking begin to change the children’s lives. And it turns out they have a lot to teach him too.
LISTEN TO ME
This romantic comedy centers on Antoine (Pascal Elbé), a history teacher in his early 50s, who learns that he has become very hard of hearing.
Unable to admit his handicap, he resigns himself to living in his bubble, his entourage finding his behavior more and more strange. His meeting with Claire, widow and mother of a young girl who has stopped speaking, will help him open up to the world again.
France, 1963. Anne is a bright young student with a bright future ahead of her. But when she becomes pregnant, she sees the opportunity to finish her studies and escape the constraints of her social environment disappear.
With her final exams fast approaching and her belly growing, Anne resolves to act, even if she has to face shame and pain, even if she has to risk prison for it. Winner of the Golden Lion and the FIPRESCI Prize at the Venice Film Festival.
THE VELVET QUEEN
In the heart of the Tibetan highlands, photographer Vincent Munier leads the writer Sylvain Tesson in his quest for the snow leopard. He introduces him to the subtle art of waiting from a blind spot, tracking animals and finding the patience to see the beasts. Through their journey in the Tibetan peaks, inhabited by invisible presences, the two men engage in a conversation about our place among living beings and celebrate the beauty of the world.