2018 IFI French Film Festival

The 2018 IFI French Film Festival will run for twelve days at the IFI from Wednesday 14th to Sunday 25th November. Featuring 19 Irish premières, the festival will welcome special guests Cédric Kahn, Claire Burger, Andréa Bescond, and Eric Métayer. Tickets are now on sale from www.ifi.ie/frenchfest.

Highlights of this year’s festival include Cannes favourite Girl, directed by Lukas Dhont, Agnès Jaoui’s Place publique, Christophe Honoré’s Sorry Angel, Gilles Lellouche’s delightful swimming comedy Sink or Swim, and Camille Vidal-Naquet’s Sauvage.

The festival will open on Wednesday 14th with a Gala Screening of Claire Burger’s moving family drama Real Love; the IFI is delighted to welcome Claire Burger to the festival for an opening night Q&A. The festival will close on Sunday 25th with the Irish première of Mia Hansen-Løve’s latest film, Maya, which centres on a stricken war photographer who returns to India where he spent part of his childhood.

Acclaimed writer-director-actor Cédric Kahn, most recently seen in Paweł Pawlikowski’s Cold War, will visit the festival with his latest film The Prayer. This stunning new work follows 22-year-old Thomas (Anthony Bajon, Best Actor at this year’s Berlin Film Festival) as he joins a community of reformed drug addicts living in isolation in the mountains. Kahn will also give a Masterclass on Saturday 17th at 13.00 in association with Screen Training Ireland, and introduce a screening of his critically acclaimed 2001 film Roberto Succo.

Speaking about this year’s programme, Festival Director Marie-Pierre Richard commented, ‘The IFI once again brings a rich and eclectic mix of French cinema to Dublin with highlights from the Berlin, Cannes, Locarno, Venice, and Toronto film festivals. These films bear witness and bring insights of our times, showing through fiction or documentary works a cinema that is vibrant and alive, audacious, engaging, and richly visual. The programme includes poignant portraits of family and individuals, men and women facing many challenges in their daily life, dealing with social injustice, migration, gender inequality and issues, prostitution, sexual abuse, and young people looking for their place in an increasingly fragmented world.’

Also scheduled to appear at the festival are directors Andréa Bescond and Eric Métayer, who will present their award-winning new film Little Tickles. In the film, Bescond takes the lead as Odette, a professional dancer who comes to realise that she was sexually abused as a child by a family friend. The film, which screened in the Un Certain Regard section of this year’s Cannes Film Festival, is an imaginatively conceived exploration of childhood trauma.

Notable other films to screen from this year’s Cannes programme include: Girl, Lukas Dhont’s Queer Palme-winning story of a gender non-conforming aspiring ballerina; Stéphane Brizé’s At War, an urgent and topical film which portrays the battle of a group of workers when their profitable factory is shut down; Guillaume Senez’s Our Struggles features Romain Duris as a father battling to raise his children when his wife leaves the family home; Sauvage, Camille Vidal-Naquet’s visceral portrait of a rent boy on the streets of Strasbourg; Sorry Angel, Christophe Honoré’s vibrant queer drama focusing on a burgeoning relationship in 1990s Paris; and Yann Gonzalez’s Knife + Heart, a stylish 1970s-set thriller starring Vanessa Paradis as a low-rent pornographer.

To tie-in with the 50th anniversary of the May 1968 protests, the festival is delighted to screen the full three-hour version of Chris Marker’s seminal documentary A Grin Without A Cat. The film, a fascinating account of the New Left from 1967 to 1977, features many interviews with French Communist leaders, sociologists, and students. The Prague Spring is also chronicled, along with the rise of Salvador Allende, and the Watergate scandal.

Following on from the success of last year’s Jean-Pierre Melville retrospective, this year the focus will fall on Henri-Georges Clouzot with screenings of four of his best-known works: 1943’s The Raven, starring Pierre Fresnay as a small-town doctor who receives anonymous threatening letters; The Wages of Fear, the 1953 thriller focused on four men transporting nitro-glycerine 300 miles across treacherous roads; Les Diaboliques, a heart-stopping murder mystery starring Clouzot’s wife Véra; and The Mystery of Picasso, a 1956 documentary focusing on the work of the master Cubist. The retrospective is supported by Institut Français Paris and the Embassy of France in Ireland.

Other films screening over the twelve days include: Meryem Benm’Barek-Aloïse’s Moroccan drama Sofia; Emmanuel Finkiel’s Memoir of War, France’s official entry for the 2019 Academy Awards; School’s Out, Sébastian Marnier’s chilling thriller; Pierre Salvadori’s sparkling comedyThe Trouble With You; Philippe Faucon’s Amin, starring Emmanuelle Devos; a fascinating film-essay focusing on 1980s tennis star John McEnroe, In the Realm of Perfection; Matthieu Bareyre’s compelling portrait of youth 50 years after May 1968 Young and Alive; and Benoît Delépine and Gustave Kervern’s I Feel Good, starring Oscar-winner Jean Dujardin.

Finally, younger audiences will delight in our family screening of Clovis Cornillac’s Belle and Sebastian, Friends For Life, which will take place on the closing day of the festival at 11.00.

Tickets for the IFI French Film Festival are now on sale from the IFI Box Office on 01-6793477 and from www.ifi.ie/frenchfest. Multi-ticket packages are also available for 5 and 10 films, only from the IFI Box Office – terms and conditions apply.

 

 

 

http://filmireland.net/2018/06/26/film-festivals-2018-here-abroad/

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IFI French Film Festival

The programme for the 2016 IFI French Film Festival has been announced. Ireland’s largest celebration of French film, now in its 17th year, will run for 12 days at the Irish Film Institute (IFI) from Wednesday, November 16th to Sunday, November 27th. This year’s programme features 23 Irish premieres, will be packed with special guests including Gustave Kervern, Benoît Delépine, Dominik Moll and Gilles Marchand, alongside a focus on French classics, including a 60th anniversary screening of Claude Lelouch’s A Man and a Woman.

Highlights of this year’s festival include the opening film, Justine Triet’s In Bed With Victoria, François Ozon’s period drama Frantz, The Unknown Girl from two-time Palme d’or winners Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, and 2016 Cannes Jury Prize winner It’s Only the End of the World, directed by Xavier Dolan.

Speaking at the programme’s launch, festival director Marie-Pierre Richard, commented, ‘French cinema this year yet again reveals the a tremendous variety of filmmakers that we like for the strength and vigour of their work, the uniqueness of their films and the talent and energy they bring to cinema. We are honoured to have so many wonderful and distinctive directors as our guests at this year’s festival. Our programme is filled with strong personal subjects addressed with singular cinematic vision, and arthouse films with big star casts. This is cinema richly experimenting with form, style and storytelling, giving us films full of life, diversity and inspiration!’

Once again, the IFI  welcome a number of very special guests to the festival. Writing-directing team Dominik Moll and Gilles Marchand will present two new films: News from Planet Mars and In the Forest, alongside a screening of their 2000 smash hit, Harry, He’s Here To Help; co-directors Benoît Delépine and Gustave Kervern will present popular comedy Saint Amour starring Gérard Depardieu; actress Lola Créton will be in Dublin for the Irish premiere of Corniche Kennedy, while director Sébastian Betbeder will also present two new films, Marie and the Misfits and Journey to Greenland. Controversial military drama, The Stopover, winner of the Best Screenplay award at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, will screen with directors Delphine and Muriel Coulin in attendance.

Documentary highlights of the 2016 programme include a screening of Bertrand Tavernier’s unmissable epic A Journey Through French Cinema, while Cyril Dion and Mélanie Laurent’s César-winning Tomorrow examines projects looking to effect change on a social, ecological and economic level.

The stars of French cinema appear throughout this year’s programme with Gérard Depardieu also appearing in the odd-couple road movie Tour de France, Marion Cotillard, Léa Seydoux and Vincent Cassell all feature in Xavier Dolan’s It’s Only the End of the World, while legendary actor Jean-Pierre Léaud, star of Truffaut’s Les Quatre Cents Coups, portrays an ailing Louis XIV in The Death of Louis XIV.

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IFI French Film Festival Competition: Win tickets to Focus on ‘70s French Cinema

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Bringing the crème de la crème of French cinema to Ireland, and now bigger and better than ever, the IFI French Film Festival returns for its 16th edition from November 18th to 29th with a massive 35 screenings (including 16 Irish premieres), a national tour of key titles across Ireland and a stellar line-up of guests that include Palme d’Or winner and acclaimed director of Rust and Bone, A Prophet and The Beat that My Heart Skipped, Jacques Audiard.

Audiences can expect a superb programme of brand new French cinema at the IFI French Film Festival over 12 exciting days, including work from Emmanuelle Bercot, Arnaud Desplechin, Philippe Garrel, Guillaume Nicloux, Jérôme Bonnell and, Festival Guest of Honour, Jacques Audiard. There will be a focus on the 1970s with three remarkable films, and a retrospective on one of France’s most respected directors, Audiard, including a masterclass with the man himself. Those living outside of Dublin can experience the drama and thrill of the Festival also as a selection of films will tour nationally in collaboration with access>CINEMA.

Celebrating 16 years as the leader of French cinema in Ireland, the IFI French Film Festival continues to delve deep into this world-class film culture to bring new releases, classics and star guests to Ireland, growing year on year so that this Festival remains a vital part of the cultural scene both in Dublin and throughout Ireland.

As part of this year’s IFI French Film Festival the IFI have a focus on ‘70s French cinema with 3 features that were almost never afforded a theatrical screening, and are showing in 35mm

The Red Circle on Saturday 21st November 2015 at 13.30  

We Won’t Grow Old Together on Saturday 28th November 2015 at 13.00  

Serie Noire on Sunday 29th November 2015 at 15.30  

Grace à l’immense générosité des membres de l’lFI, nous offrons à l’heureux gagant deux places de cinema pour chacun des 3 films.

To be in with a chance of winning a pair of tickets for each screening answer the following question:

Who directed The Red Circle?

Email your answer to filmireland@gmail.com before 2pm Tuesday, 21st November when the Film Ireland Chapeau will select a winner.

 

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IFI French Film Festival Returns

french

The IFI French Film Festival returns for its 16th edition from November 18th to 29th with 35 screenings (including 16 Irish premieres), a national tour of key titles across Ireland and a stellar line-up of guests that include Palme d’Or winner and acclaimed director of Rust and Bone, A Prophet and The Beat that My Heart Skipped, Jacques Audiard.

This year’s festival includes work from Emmanuelle Bercot, Arnaud Desplechin, Philippe Garrel, Guillaume Nicloux, Jérôme Bonnell and, Festival Guest of Honour, Jacques Audiard. There will be a focus on the 1970s with three remarkable films, and a retrospective on one of France’s most respected directors, Audiard, including a masterclass with the man himself. Those living outside of Dublin can experience the drama and thrill of the Festival also as a selection of films will tour nationally in collaboration with access>CINEMA.

Announcing the 2015 programme, Festival Director Marie-Pierre Richard said “We are honoured to have Jacques Audiard as our guest; to screen the work of wonderfully talented filmmakers including Emmanuelle Bercot, Stéphane Brizé, Arnaud Desplechin, Joachim Lafosse, Philippe Garrel, Guillaume Nicloux; new works from emerging filmmakers Thomas Bidegain, Simon Rouby, Thomas Salvador; and thrilled to have the rare opportunity to present seminal classics from Maurice Pialat, Alain Corneau and Jean-Pierre Melville.”

Further details and tickets are available  at www.ifi.ie/frenchfest or at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477. 

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Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival: Saturday Preview

 

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The penultimate day of the Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival begins with a second screening of Marc Lavoine and Julie Depardieu’s charming animation Ma maman est en Amérique, elle a rencontré Buffalo Bill. 

Agnès Varda’s Documenteur screens in the afternoon alongside France-based Irish artist John Lalor’s Incident Urbain 

Catherine Deneuve plays a woman who chooses one last shot at love over a lifetime of regret in On My Way, followed by a Q&A with director Emmanuelle Bercot.

Thierry de Peretti’s Les Apaches tells the story of group  of teenagers whose antics lead them to  the hands of criminals.

And finally tonight, the ever glorious  Juliette Binoche stars in the French biopic Camille Claudel 1915 as a sculptress confined in a mental institution by her brother.

 

11.00

Ma maman est en Amérique, elle a rencontré Buffalo Bill

 

13.00

 Documenteur & Incident Urbain 

Artist Garrett Phelan will take part in a post-screening Q&A on the theme of working at the intersection of art and cinema.

 

16.00

On My Way (Elle s’en va)

Emmanuelle Bercot will participate in a Q&A with filmaker Conor Horgan after the screening on Saturday,

 

18.30

Les Apaches or (Société des Apaches) 

 

20.30

Camille Claudel 1915 

 

Tickets for all IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find full details for all the films screening at the Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival, which runs 20th November  – 1st December, 2013.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DJQmCK6AJw

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Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival: Thursday Preview

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The Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival continues today with a great chance to catch 3 films screened earlier in the festival that you may have missed.

The day’s screenings begin with Katell Quillévéré’s realist drama Suzanne, which portrays the relationship of two motherless sisters.

Next up is Going Away (pictured)Nicole Garcia’s drama about  a supply teacher and a lonely young boy who become unlikely friends. The film was awarded the Special Presentation at the Toronto International Film Festival 2013.

Finally Guillaume Gallienne’s Me Myself and Mum screens later tonight. Adapted from his own successful one-man theatre show, Gallienne’s film tackles his sexually confused youth and is bound to please its audience with its comic charm.

 

Thursday, 28th November 2013:

 

16.15

Suzanne

 

18.30

Going Away (Un beau dimanche)

 

20.45

Me Myself and Mum (Les Garcons et Guillaume, a Table!)

 

 

Tickets for all IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find full details for all the films screening at the Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival, which runs 20th November  – 1st December, 2013.

 

 

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Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival: Wednesday Preview

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Wednesday’s screenings at Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival kick off with Guillaume Gallienne’s Me Myself and Mum (pictured). Adapted from his own successful one-man theatre show, Gallienne’s film tackles his sexually confused youth and is bound to please its audience with its comic charm.

Next up is Going Away, Nicole Garcia’s drama about  a supply teacher and a lonely young boy who become unlikely friends. The film was awarded the Special Presentation at the Toronto International Film Festival 2013

 

 Wednesday 27th November 2013:

 

18.30

Me Myself and Mum (Les Garcons et Guillaume, a Table!)

 

20.30

Going Away (Un beau dimanche)

 

Tickets for all the Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find full details for all the films screening at the festival, which runs 20th November  – 1st December, 2013.

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Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival: Tuesday Preview

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The Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival continues today with a role tailor-made for screen icon Catherine Deneueve playing a woman who chooses one last shot at love over a lifetime of regret, in Emmanuelle Bercot’s On My Way.

Plus 2 Autumns, 3 Winters, a stylish French indie rom-com from up-and-coming French writer-director Sébastien Betbeder.

 

Tuesday, 26th November 2013:

18.30
On My Way (Elle s’en va)

 

21.00
2 Autumns, 3 Winters

 

Tickets for all the Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find full details for all the films screening at the festival, which runs 20th November  – 1st December, 2013.

 

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Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival: Monday Preview

chinese-puzzle

 

Monday’s menu at the Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival consists of Cedric Klapisch’s Chinese Puzzle (pictured), which continues on from Klapisch’s L’auberge espagnole and Russian Dolls. In his latest film, Romain Duris’ Xavier leaves Paris to follow Wendy (Kelly Reilly)  to New York, where she now lives with their two young children after the break-up of their marraige. If you missed the film’s first screening on Saturday, be sure to catch it today.

Up next is Katell Quillévéré’s realist drama Suzanne which portrays the relationship of two motherless sisters.

 

Monday, 25th November 2013:

18.15

Chinese Puzzle

 

20.45

Suzanne

 

Tickets for all IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find full details for all the films screening at the Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival, which runs 20th November  – 1st December, 2013.

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Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival: Sunday Preview

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The Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival has two contemporary debut features among its line-up today with films from Abdellatif Kechiche and Shalimar Preuss. They are in good company alongside a screening of Jacques Demy’s 1961 feature debut Lola and Xavier Dolan’s latest film, always something to look forward to. The day began with  Marc Lavoine and Julie Depardieu’s charming animation Ma maman est en Amérique, elle a rencontré Buffalo Bill 

Sunday, 24th November 2013:

Ma maman est en Amérique, elle a rencontré Buffalo Bill 

11.00 

Six-year-old Jeanis is going to big school for the first time and has to get used to the very strict teacher.

 

Blame It On Voltaire  (La faute à Voltaire)

13.30

Abdellatif Kechiche’s 2000 debut film  is an account  of an illegal immigrant’s adventures in Paris.

 

Lola

16.30

Jacques Demy’s 1961 debut feature follows six people in the south of France as they pursue their fantasies. The film was restored and re-released by Demy’s widow, French filmmaker Agnès Varda.

Dr. Douglas Smith will introduce this screening. 

 

My Blue-Eyed Girl  (Ma belle gosse)

18.45

Shalimar Preuss’ first feature centres on Maden, a young woman on holiday with her family who has become smitten with a prison inmate.

 

Tom at the Farm (Tom à la ferme) 

20.45

Xavier Dolan’s psychological thriller based on a play written by Michel Marc Bouchard follows Tom, a young advertising copywriter, who travels to the country for a funeral. Once there, he’s shocked to find out no one knows who he is.

 

Tickets for all IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find full details for all the films screening at the Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival, which runs 20th November  – 1st December, 2013.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUEvIEOzQ54

 

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Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival: Friday Preview

Blue-is-the-Warmest-Colour

Blue is the Warmest Colour

The Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival continues today with a fine selection of films and a chance for audiences to meet with actors and directors. Festival guest Arnaud Desplechin presented a Masterclass: Working with Actors earlier today to kick proceedings off in style. Desplechin won the Jean Vigo Short Film Prize with his directorial debut, The Life of the Dead (1991). Since then, he has directed seven features and one documentary. He will also take part in several Q&As during the festival, including later this evening after the screening of his 2008 comedy-drama film A Christmas Tale (Un conte de Noël).

Friday, 22nd November 2013

18.00

A Christmas Tale (Un conte de Noël)

Catherine Deneuve stars as the  matriarch of the troubled Vuillard family, who come together at Christmas after she learns she needs a bone marrow transplant from a blood relative.

Arnaud Desplechin will take part in a post-screening Q&A hosted by filmmaker Michael Kinirons.

 

20.00

Blue is the Warmest Colour (La vie d’Adèle)

Acclaimed French filmmaker Abdellatif Kechiche’s latest film, based on Julie Maroh’s graphic novel, was the sensation of this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

 

21.10

Domestic Life (La vie domestique)

An adaptation of Rachel Cusk’s 2006 novel, Domestic Life follows Juliette, a newcomer into the residential suburb of the Paris, who begins to feel the noose of domestic obligations and household chores slowly tightening around her neck.

Emmanuelle Devos will be in attendance at the screening and will participate in a Q&A.

 

Tickets for all Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find full details for all the films screening at the festival, which runs 20th November  – 1st December, 2013.

 

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Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival: Thursday Preview

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The IFI French Film Festival continues today with two films by festival guest Arnaud Desplechin. Kings & Queen from 2004 stars Catherine Deneuve, Mathieu Amalric and Emmanuelle Devos in a story of a pair of ex-lovers’ parallel lives. Tremendously funny and insightful, Kings & Queens is not to be missed, if only for Devos’ dream scene.  

Desplechin’s Franco-American drama Jimmy P: Psychotherapy of a Plains Indian 2013 tells the story of Jimmy Picard, a Blackfeet Plains Indian, who returns from World War II suffering a variety of symptoms that seemingly defy physical diagnosis. This much anticipated film stars Benicio Del Toro and was nominated for the Palme d’Or at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.

Thursday, 21st November 2013

18.00
Kings & Queen

Emmanuelle Devos will participate in a post-screening Q&A with journalist and film critic Paul Whittington.

20.45
Jimmy P: Psychotherapy of a Plains Indian


Director Arnaud Desplechin will participate in a Q&A after the screening on Thursday, November 21st with John Maguire, Film critic & feature writer for The Sunday Business Post.

Tickets for all IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find full details for all the films screening at the Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival, which runs 20th November  – 1st December, 2013.

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IFI French Film Festival opens with ‘Just a Sigh’

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We say bonjour once again to the IFI French Film Festival, which kicks off tonight with the Gala Opening film, Just a Sigh (Le Temps de l’aventure).  Jérôme Bonnell’s latest film stars the wonderful stage and screen actress Emmanuelle Devos as Alix, an actress who encounters an English-speaking professor on her way to an audition. Our own Gabriel Byrne plays Douglas, the professor she meets who is on his way to a funeral. Their paths cross on a day that plays with destiny and how we can master it. The film is marked by the two central performances and promises to deliver a fine opening to this year’s festival.

The screening begins at 8pm.

Director Jérôme Bonnell and Emmanuelle Devos will be in attendance at the screening and will participate in a Q&A with David O Mahony of Access Cinema.

Just a Sigh is showing as part of the Carte Noire IFI French Film Festival (20th November  – 1st December, 2013).

Tickets for all IFI French Film Festival films are on sale now at the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 and can also be booked on www.ifi.ie where you can find out full details for all the films screening at the Carte Noir IFI French Film Festival.

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IFI French Film Festival: Juliette Binoche to appear at IFI French Film Festival 2012

Juliette Binoche is set to be one of the star attractions at the IFI French Film Festival 2012 running from 14th-25th November, which also includes the Irish premiere of Michael Haneke’s Cannes Palme d’Or- winning Love (Amour); winner of the 2012 Jean Prix Vigo, Atomic Age (with Director Héléna Klotz in attendance); and a guest appearance by the iconic actress Béatrice Dalle, who will introduce her new film Bye Bye Blondie, as well as her career-defining French classic Betty Blue.

There is a special buzz of excitement in the air around this year’s IFI French Film Festival with the announcement that multi-award winning Juliette Binoche, one of the most acclaimed and celebrated actresses of her generation, will be at the Festival to present her new film Another Woman’s Life on Saturday 24th November at 18.10. Binoche gives a world-class performance in this bittersweet time-travel comedy-drama by award-winning actress-turned director Sylvie Testud. In addition to this, Binoche also features in Michael Haneke’s Hidden which is also being shown as part of the Festival. The star of countless film classics including Three Colours: Blue, Hidden and Certified Copy; her performances have won Best Actress Awards at Venice, Cannes, Berlin and she received the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her performance in The English Patient.

Alongside the touch of glamour that Binoche will undoubtedly bring to the Festival there’s a rich and impressive line-up of the best new French cinema including 20 Irish premieres; a wealth of visiting special guests including Béatrice Dalle, Benoit Jacquot, Reba Kateb, Héléna Klotz  and Alice de Lencquesaing, our annual celebration new talent in our First-Time Director’s strand and a continuing celebration of 50 years of the iconic production company Les Films de Losange.

IFI Director Ross Keane said ‘We are thrilled with the calibre of guests we’ve attracted to this year’s IFI French Film Festival. It’s a testament to the reputation of the Festival that stars like Juliette Binoche and Béatrice Dalle will be in attendance.’

Announcing the programme, Festival Director Marie-Pierre Richard said ‘The many facets of love are something of a theme emerging from this year’s programme. We’re particularly delighted to open the Festival with a sneak preview of the extraordinary Love (Amour) by Michael Haneke, which we saw at Cannes before it picked up the prestigious Palme d’Or and which is set to be one of the biggest international releases of the next twelve months. This poignant film about the painful dilemma that confronts an elderly Parisian couple, as one of them gradually succumbs to illness, is brilliantly directed and beautifully portrayed by two titan actors of the Nouvelle Vague. This is a film that will always stay with you.’

Béatrice Dalle arrived on the international stage with her iconic performance in Betty Blue in 1986. She will be attending the Festival to look back at a screening of this Oscar-nominated classic as well as presenting her new film Bye Bye Blondie, in which she and her co-star – screen legend Emmanuelle Béart – play a passionate and turbulent couple who are reunited after years apart. Also attending the Festival will be Benoit Jacquot, a revered and prolific filmmaker noted for his fascination with his characters’ psychology. He’ll be presenting and discussing his new film Farewell, My Queen; a lavish look at the final days of the reign of Marie Antoinette which opened this year’s Berlin Film Festival.

Two more films from Cannes that tie into the theme of love and sexuality are Laurence Anyways, Xavier Dolan’s vivid melodrama of an impossible love story; and the engaging documentary The Invisibles which focuses on the stories of eleven gay men and women of an older generation from across France, giving a fascinating portrait of the development of French social attitudes.

Following on from her international hit Leaving, Catherine Corsini returns with Three Worlds, a taught, suspenseful film on the aftermath of a hit-and run that features a fantastic cast. Actor Reda Kateb (who also appeared in the recent hit A Prophet) will be in attendance at the 19th November screening. Also notable for its great ensemble cast is Love Crime (featuring Kristin Scott Thomas and Ludivine Sagnier), Alain Corneau’s final film which perfectly captures the bleak and highly competitive corporate world.

French cuisine is celebrated in Step up to the Plate, an impressive documentary on a three-Michelin starred restaurant in the south of France while French wine culture is dramatically explored in You will be my Son when a bitter dispute breaks out over the inheritance of a famous vineyard. The IFI Café Bar will also be creating a special French menu for the Festival.

This year’s First-Time Director’s programme once again showcases the wealth of new talent rising through French Cinema. Héléna Klotz will attend to present Atomic Age which won this year’s prestigious and envelope-pushing Prix Jean Vigo. Also remarkable are Alice Wincour’s Augustine, an engaging study of 19th century sexual politics based on a true story and set at the Salpêtirère Psychiatric Hospital, and Elie Wajeman’s Aliyah, a slow-burning portrait of low-level Jewish drug dealer.

Several comedies are on show including the lively What’s in a Name?;Noémie Lvovsky’s Camille Rewinds; the Podalydès brothers’ Granny’s Funeral; The Big Night from theDelépine-Kervern duo, whose Mammuth was one of the Festival favourites in 2010. Those looking for an IFI Family outing will be enchanted by the animated adaptation of the classic children’s book Ernest and Celestine.

It’s 50 years since Éric Rohmer and Barbet Schroeder set up Les Films du Losange, the production company that produced many of the key Nouvelle Vague titles and has gone on to remain a key force in the industry. A fine selection of their output is on show including Nicholas Philibert’s Louvre City documentary, Michael Haneke’s excellent Hidden and Barbet Schroeder’s own first feature More.

Closing the Festival is actor-turned-director Louis–Do de Lencquesaing’s first feature In a Rush  focusing on divorced writer Paul (de Lencquesaing) struggling in his relationships this mother, potential partner, and student daughter (played by his own child Alice). Alice de Lencquesaing will be in attendance to discuss this carefully observed family drama that exudes class and charm, the perfect end to another fantastic IFI French Film Festival.

Full details of all the films can be found at www.ifi.ie/FrenchFest

Booking Information:

Tickets are available from 26th October  from the IFI Box Office in person, by telephone on 01 679 3477 or online at www.ifi.ie.

Tickets cost €9.20, except for the opening film which includes a post-screening reception and costs €15. Tickets for the family screening are €5 or €15 for a family of 4. There are special package prices of €40 for five films and €70 for 11 films, but each ticket purchased must be for a different film and the package excludes the opening film. Daily IFI Membership (€1) or IFI Annual Membership (€25) is required for all films.

The IFI acknowledges the financial support of its principle funder, the Arts Council. Additionally the IFI French Film Festival is made possible with the support of the Embassy of France in Ireland, the Alliance Française, and The Irish Times.

IFI French Film Festival 2012 – Timetable

Wednesday 14th November
19.30     Opening Film: Love (Amour)
Followed by Reception

Thursday 15th November
18.20     Camille Rewinds (Camille redouble)
20.30     You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet (Vous n’avez encore rien vu)

Friday 16th November
18.10     Granny’s Funeral (Adieu Berthe – L’Enterrement de mémé)
20.40     Augustine

Saturday 17th November
14.30 Betty Blue (37°2 le matin)
Béatrice Dalle will introduce the film
18.10 Bye Bye Blondie
Followed by a Q&A with Béatrice Dalle
20.40 A Better Life (Une Vie meilleure)

Sunday 18th November
14.00 Louvre City (La Ville Louvre)
18.10 The Big Night (Le Grand soir)
20.40 You will be my Son (Tu seras mon fils)

Monday 19th November
18.10     French Film Club screening: Camille Rewinds (Camille redouble)
20.40 Three Worlds (Trois Mondes)
Reda Kateb will introduce the film and take part in a Q+A

Tuesday 20th November
15.40 Granny’s Funeral (Adieu Berthe – L’Enterrement de mémé)
18.10 Prix Jean Vigo: Atomic Age (L’Âge atomique)
Héléna Klotz will introduce the film and take part in a Q+A
20.40 What’s in a Name (Le Prénom)

Wednesday 21st November
15.40 Farewell, My Queen (Les Adieux à la reine)
18.10 Aliyah (Alyah)
20.00 Laurence Anyways

Thursday 22nd November
15.40 The Big Night (Le Grand soir)
18.10 The Invisibles (Les Invisibles)
20.40 Step up to the Plate (Entre les Bras – La Cuisine en héritage)

Friday 23rd November
15.40 Three Worlds (Trois mondes)
18.10 Farewell, My Queen (Les Adieux à la reine)
Benoît Jacquot will introduce the film and take part in a Q+A
20.40 Superstar

Saturday 24th November
13.00 What’s in a Name(Le Prénom)
15.40 Hidden (Caché)
18.10 Another Woman’s Life (La Vie d’une autre)
Juliette Binoche will introduce the film and take part in a Q+A
20.40 Love Crime (Crime d’amour)

Sunday 25th November
11.00 IFI Family: Ernest and Celestine (Ernest et Célestine)
13.00 More
15.40 Superstar
18.10 Another Woman’s Life (La Vie d’une autre)
20.40 In a Rush (Au galop)
Alice de Lencquesaing will introduce the film and take part in a Q+A

Full details of all the films can be found at www.ifi.ie/FrenchFest

The IFI acknowledges the financial support of the Arts Council.

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IFI French Film Festival: The Minister

The IFI French Film Festival
Thursday, 24th November 2011

The Minister

(L’Exercice de l’État)

Louise Wimmer had another screening on Friday afternoon at the IFI French Film Festival, followed by Service Entrance also having its second screening. Jean-Marc Moutout’s Early One Morning (De Bon Matin) screened in the evening with a Q&A with Jean-Pierre Darroussin, who plays a middle-aged businessman who starts his day as usual before coolly gunning down a couple of work colleagues; one of the main outcomes coffee prevents.

Friday ended with a screening of  The Minister (L’Exercice de l’État), Pierre Schoeller’s fascinating political drama charting a destructive lust for power. Introduced by Michel Ciment, the film follows the exploits of Bertrand Saint-Jean, the Minister for Transport, as he endeavours to hold onto political power, while at the same time staying true to his personal ideals – yet to achieve one he must let go of the other. The film sees a decent man unravel as he gets caught up in the machinations of a political system that chews him up.

Olivier Gourmet puts in a sturdy performance as Bertrand Saint-Jean as a man gobbled up by ambition  – unforgettably set out in the film’s opening scene –   whose thirst for power destroys his soul, proving once again the first half of Lord Acton’s famous words that ‘power tends to corrupt…’

Steven Galvin

Check out the festival programme here

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IFI French Film Festival: Louise Wimmer

LOUISE WIMMER

 

The IFI French Film Festival
Thursday, 24th November 2011

Louise Wimmer

Black Venus was screened for a second time on Thursday afternoon as part of the IFI French Film Festival, followed by another screening of Gérald Hustache-Mathieu noirish Nobody Else But You (Poupoupidou).

The evening kicked off with a screening of Louise Wimmer. Cyril Mennegun’s film focuses on a 50ish-year-old woman who’s fallen on bad times, living out of her car struggling with a meagre income from her cleaning jobs and battling authorities for a council flat.

The film is marked by Corinne Masiero’s central performance as Louise, a proud woman who does her utmost to maintain appearances, never looking for sympathy and admirably maintaining her dignity in such difficult circumstances.

Mennegun patiently reveals how Louise has found herself in this position and the thin line that can exist between a life taken for granted and a life from which those things are taken away. Her resilient struggle to survive is delivered in some well-observed scenes such as petrol syphoning and café vulturing.

With Louise Wimmer Mennegun has fashioned an impressive, realistic character study of a proud woman battling to take charge of her life.

Thurday’s preceedings came to a close with the screening of Service Entrance (Les Femmes du 6e étage) Philippe Le Guay’s romantic comedy featuring Sandrine Kiberlain whose impressive performance in The Bird opened this year’s festival.

Steven Galvin

Louise Wimmer screens again on Friday, 25th November at 14.00

Check out the festival programme here

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IFI French Film Festival: Black Venus

venus-noire-

The IFI French Film Festival
Wednesday, 23rd November 2011

Black Venus
(Vénus noire)

Wednesday at the IFI French Film Festival began with a repeat screening of Pater and continued with I’m Glad My Mother Is Alive (Je suis heureux que ma mère soit vivante) playing as part of the festival’s Claude Miller focus.

Later on Abdellatif Kechiche’s provocative film Black Venus screened. The film is based on the true story of Saartjie Baartman (Yahima Torres), a black South African female, who was lured to London in the early 19th century by Hendrick Cezar (Andre Jacobs) and exhibited as part of a freak show under the name ‘Hottentot Venus’.

After being sold to a French animal trainer, she is taken to Paris where she is further exhibited in the most degrading ways and eventually forced into prostitution before her death. Her body was then dissected as a specimen for science, which opens the film, and so in death she was just as much abused as she was in life. 200 years later France handed back Saartjie Baartman’s remains to the South African Government in a symbolic gesture of reconciliation.

Kechiche tells Saartjie‘s story in a purposeful, uncomfortable manner making the audience off-screen voyeurs of her on-screen exploitation. His unflinching camera lurks over the acts of abuse performed on Saartjie again and again throughout the film – and at just under 3 hours, this makes for a gruelling cinematic experience that isn’t easily forgotten.

 

Steven Galvin

Check out the festival programme here

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IFI French Film Festival: The Life of Jesus

The IFI French Film Festival
Tuesday, 22nd November 2011

The Life of Jesus

(La Vie de Jésus)

The Prix Jean Vigo 60th Anniversay special programme of the IFI French Festival included the 1997 winner The Life of Jesus (La Vie de Jésus), Bruno Dumont’s debut feature, which screened on Tuesday. Working with a cast of non-professionals, Dumont crafts a harrowing portrait of adolescent frustration. David Douche plays Freddy, a teenager living with his Mother in a tiny Flemish country town. Lack of communication and an inability to express emotion is a major theme in the film and this begins with his Mother from the outset as she shows more care about the news than she ever seems to about him.

Life seems to be draining out of Freddy, whose epileptic fits pepper his insubstantial life of boredom. Freddy’s attempts at escaping his eternal ennui are marked by frustration and failure: he plays in the local brass band – but seems to be forever playing a funeral march; he looks after his pet finch – but it is depressingly jailed in its covered cage; he motor bikes with a group of oafish friends – but through desolate, achingly flat scenery and frequent crashes; and shares a relationship with Marie – but fails to communicate either physically or emotionally with her, engaging in empty conversation and mechanical, passionless sex.

Freddy constantly crashes from his motorbike and the cuts and bruises of his outer shell reflect his inner turmoil. His rage is obvious as he kicks against walls and the film makes clear he is wrestling internally with the ordinary demons of his everyday existence that will ultimately seal his tragic fate. When Kader, an Arab boy, enters proceedings and becomes involved with Marie, Freddy’s inability to deal with events takes on a disturbing turn as his frustration boils over into violence.

All of this is caught by Dumont’s emotionally distant camera, often employing extreme long shots in which his subjects appear lost on a canvas of bleak, open landscapes emphasizing their chronic sense of alienation. Dumont’s film remains a powerful, intense experience, 15 years after its release.

Gérald Hustache-Mathieu’s noirish thriller Nobody Else but You (Poupoupidou) played out its twists and turns later that that evening with its tale of the investigation of a Marilyn Monroe figure in small-town France, and was followed by Pater. Directed by Alain Cavalier, Pater sees Cavalier and French actor Vincent Lindon playing versions of themselves working on a film within the film. In the film within the film, Cavalier casts himself as President of the Republic and Lindon as Prime minister. OK, lets start again…

Steven Galvin

Pater screens again on Wednesday, 23rd November at 16.00

Check out the festival programme here

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IFI French Film Festival: Lights Out

lightsout

The IFI French Film Festival
Monday, 20th November 2011

Lights Out

(Simon Werner a Disparu)

The First-Time Directors section of this year’s IFI French Film Festival presented the debut features of three filmmakers. Fabrice Gobert’s impressive Lights Out (Simon Werner a Disparu) was first shown on Saturday afternoon and had a second screening on Monday. The film was entered into the Un Certain Regard section of the 2010 Cannes Film Festival.

Lights Out is structured around the lives and events of young students at a suburban French high school during the early 1990s after the mysterious disappearance of classmate Simon Werner. The film opens on the night of one of the students’ 18th birthday party when a gruesome discovery triggers off the narrative’s events as lived by each student closely involved. As others start to fail to turn up to class, all sorts of rumours and gossip begin to spread. Gobert’s direction is full of clever misdirection as his handling of the plot through the film’s structure and content ensures that it is constantly veering off in other directions.

Each perspective of the events inform the viewer little by little recreating the facts of what has actually happened in fragments without ever fully putting the pieces of the jigsaw together.

Sonic Youth provide an inspired original soundtrack of atmospheric instrumental tracks that make for a fitting backdrop to some great performances from the young cast, in particular Selma El Mouissi, who plays Laetitia, the punk with a heart.

Another First-Time Directors screening of the festival on Monday was Roland Edzard’s The End of Silence (La Fin du silence) a bleak tense drama that follows Jean, a mentally unstable youth, lashing around the forest with a rifle in hand – never a good scenario. Oh yeh, not forgetting that his family are staying in a cabin in these very woods – and his mother’s gone missing…

There were further reasons to be wary of them there woods later on that evening as Monday concluded with Outside Satan (Hors Satan), Bruno Dumont’s visually arresting film concerning the unique relationship between a recluse drifter and an enigmatic young farm girl. The film reveals itself to be much more than expected as it shifts definition and mutates into a sort of spiritual treatise.

Steven Galvin

Check out the festival programme here

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WSGgMB7i2S0

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IFI French Film Festival: L’Atalante

Dita Parlo shines in L'Atalanta

 

The IFI French Film Festival
Sunday, 19th November 2011

L’Atalante

Sunday at the IFI French Film Festival provided an opportunity to experience a bona fide classic on the big screen as the IFI hosted an afternoon double bill of Jean Vigo’s Zéro de Conduite and L’Atalante – two of the four films Vigo made before his early death from TB at the age of 29 in 1934.

Introduced by Luce Vigo, both films are testament to Vigo’s short life consumed by his utter devotion to film.

But it was L’Atalante that poured from the screen and enraptured the viewer in the power of cinema. Its simplicity expresses a depth of emotion contained within a fairy tale of inexhaustible passion. It’s a story of love found, love lost – and love regained, embodying the essence of human experience.

Sadly Vigo himself never got to see the release of the film he envisioned as it was butchered upon its release and remained for the most part a neglected masterpiece until half a century later.

A special family screening of Philippe de Chauveron’s L’élève Ducobu took place earlier in the day as part of the festival. Based on a Belgian comic series, serial prankster and miscreant Ducobu is continually getting expelled from schools for playing the clown. In his characteristic bee-striped jumper, he is in last chance saloon at his new school, where he comes up against a formidable teacher, Gustav Latouche, and his brainy classmate, Léonie. Needless to say, Ducobu has to pull all sorts of rabbits out of all sorts of hats in an effort to outdo his adversaries.

Sunday evening at the IFI began with a repeat screening of Valérie Donzelli’s Declaration of War and concluded with His Mother’s Eyes (Les Yeux de sa mere), Thierry Klifa’s melodrama boasting a stellar cast headed by the never less than legendary Catherine Deneuve.

 

Steven Galvin

Check out the festival programme here

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IFI French Film Festival: House of Tolerance

House-of-Tolerance-

The IFI French Film Festival
Saturday, 18th November 2011

House of Tolerance
[L’Apollonide (Souvenirs de la maison close)]

Saturday was a busy day for the IFI French Film Festival with things kicking off in the early afternoon with a screening of Fabrice Gober’s impressive debut feature, Lights Out (Simon Werner a disparu… ).

The Silence of Joan screened for a second time and was again introduced by its director, Philippe Ramos.

The evening began in style with two films that screened as part of the festival’s Prix Jean Vigo 60th Anniversary programme. Damien Manivel’s short The Lady with a Dog (La dame au chien) and Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche’s Smugglers’ Songs (Les chants de Mandrin) which traces the roots of the French Revolution through Louis Mandrin, a Robin Hood-type folk-hero in 18th-century France.

The day concluded with the screening of Bertrand Bonello’s uber stylized House of Tolerance [L’Apollonide (Souvenirs de la maison close)]. The ‘house’ in question is an elite Parisian brothel at the tail end of the 1890s. Visually impressive, the film relates the grim tales of the women who live and work there servicing their debauched punters by night and bonding with each other sharing their secrets and painful experiences by day – ultimately the only thing these women have is each other. The film plays with the opulent and lavish environment they work in being at odds with the grubby reality of what they do and its consequences. The brothel becomes more of a prison for the women as the film develops. There are some controversial scenes and the film labours to make a point of depicting sex in an extremely unsexy way focusing more on the bleakness of the existence of the lives of the women caught up in the sex industry.

Steven Galvin

Lights Out screens again on Monday, 21st November at 17.00

Check out the festival programme here

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IFI French Film Festival: Declaration of War

Declaration of War

The IFI French Film Festival
Thursday, 17th November 2011

Declaration of War
(La Guerre est déclarée)

Thursday at the French Film Festival saw a repeat screening of the opening night film The Bird followed by Declaration of War, France’s submission for next year’s Oscars®. A largely autobiographical film based on the real-life events of its two central actors and screenplay writers, Valérie Donzelli and Jérémie Elkaïm, Declaration of War is a brave piece of filmmaking that deals with a young couple Romeo (Elkaïm) and Juliette (Donzelli) whose life is turned inside out when their two-year-old baby boy, Adam, is diagnosed with a brain tumour.

What marks the film out is its honesty, humour and charm and its positive approach that focuses on how its central protagonists deal with a situation that despite threatening to tear their world apart brings them together infusing them with a strength under fire when it matters most, which makes for a heartfelt and emotionally life–affirming tale.

Donzelli herself takes on the role of director following on from her time behind the camera directing The Queen of Hearts, her likeable 2009 rom-com parody. With Declaration of War Donzelli plays with the line between drama and comedy achieving a fine balance between variant tones and yet still manages to produce a deeply touching and charming film.

Declaration of War announces itself in a nifty opening sequence as Juliette meets Romeo at a party and they set off on their romance with an impressively edited tracking shot through the streets of Paris.

Their romance is suddenly interrupted by an addition to the family of a mewling infant. As Adam turns 2, the pair begin to worry after noticing that his head tilts to one side, and he’s not walking, so they bring him to a pediatrician, Doctor Prat, (a cracker of a cameo from Béatrice de Staël), who recommends tests, which reveal the nightmarish scenario of Adam’s illness.

From here the film tracks the couples struggle with their fate – including their battle with a medical system expressed in anesthetic shots of long mazes of hospital corridors they must pass through – and how they themselves cope helped throughout by the support of their family and friends.

Brimming with a terrific energy, an honest sense of humour, heartfelt sentiment and charm, Declaration of War bounds along infused with the spirit of New Wave, refusing ever to sink into melodrama, and, ultimately, despite its tragic circumstances, steadfastly proclaims itself as an affirming tale of love.

Steven Galvin

Declaration of War screens again on Sunday, 18th November at 18.45

Check out the festival programme here

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IFI French Film Festival: The Bird

The Bird

The IFI French Film Festival
Wednesday, 16th November 2011


The Bird

(L’Oiseau)

The IFI have some Gallic treats in store for cinemagoers at this year’s French Film Festival. The line-up promises a 12-day feast of the best that French cinema has to offer.

The festival kicked off to a packed house on Wednesday evening with the screening of Yves Caumon’s beautiful film The Bird. Caumon was in attendance himself to provide some sublime insights into both himself and the film. He won over the crowd with a series of self-effacing and humourous responses to questions.

The film itself went down well – with an impressive central performance by Sandrine Kiberlain, (unfortunately unable to attend due to illness) who once again shows why she is one of France’s greatest actresses. She plays Anne, a grief-ridden woman in her early 40s who has become a recluse – living alone and maintaining a distance from her co-workers. When she frees a pigeon trapped in the wall of her house Anne begins to rediscover her feelings.

The film is heavy on atmosphere and sprinkled with moments of dry humour. A beautiful, evocative score subtly underpins the material of the film. Caumon’s slow, meticulous direction focuses on Anne’s internal emotions, which are remarkably portrayed by Kiberlain, whose eyes at times express so much. Her story is slowly revealed and her disconnected exterior is gradually chipped away at  – when it is, it makes for some tender scenes, such as when she is watching Kenji Mizoguchi’s classic The Life of Oharu at the cinema.

Despite its sensitive subject matter, The Bird never falls into sentimentality and Caumon refuses to become emotionally attached to Anne. Behind the camera he very much remains a detached observer, allowing the story to tell itself. His measured direction makes for a particular moving scene when Anne returns to the family home. Where other directors would have overplayed this scene to manipulate the audience, Caumon’s subtle restraint makes the scene all the more effective.

The Bird was a fitting start to what promises to be another excellent IFI French Film Festival programme. Give yourself a treat and get yourself down to the IFI over the next 12 days – you won’t be disappointed…

Steven Galvin

The Bird screens again on 17th November at 18.15

Check out the festival programme here

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEIPBVKsaRI

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IFI French Film Festival Gala Opening screening of ‘The Bird’

The 2011 IFI French Film Festival Gala Opening screening of The Bird with special guest Yves Caumon kicks off 12 days of the highlights from Cannes and Venice, French classics, a special French menu and a host of industry VIPs.

16th-27th November 2011 (IFI Box Office 01 679 3477 or www.ifi.ie/french2011)

The IFI French Film Festival gets off to a glamorous start tonight with the Gala Opening screening of The Bird, a tender drama of a woman coming to terms with grief featuring a stunning performance from Sandrine Kiberlain. The film’s director Yves Caumon will attend and will be taking part in a Q+A before the reception starts.

For 12 days the IFI will be once more transforming itself into Dublin’s Gallic hub with a wide range of special guests coming to present their work and discuss French cinema. Special Guest highlights will include veteran character actor Jean-Pierre Darroussin presenting Early One Morning, major critic Michel Ciment interviewing leading French filmmaker Claude Miller during a focus on his recent work, Philippe Ramos presenting his new take on an iconic subject of French history The Silence of Joan, and Luce Vigo presenting a selection of winners of the innovative Prix Jean Vigo – the prize named after her legendary filmmaker father.

Other familiar faces to French film fans to watch out for in the Festival include Catherine Deneuve acting in His Mother’s Eyes and Beloved, Sandrine Kiberlain in The Bird and Service Entrance and Chiara Mastroianni in Beloved.

Alongside these veterans there are two particularly astonishing newcomers; the heart-wrenching turn from 11-year old Thomas Doret in the Dardenne brothers’ Cannes hit The Kid with the Bike and Yahima Torres’ riveting debut in Abdellatif Kechiche’s Black Venus as Sarah Baartman, an enslaved African who was exhibited around 19th century Europe.

Alongside new acting talent, the three films in the First-Time Directors strand present a vibrant picture of the up and coming generation of French filmmakers: Simon Werner’s Lights Out follows the aftermath of a high school abduction, Roland Edzard’s The End of Silence follows a hunting trip tinged with vengeance, and Cyril Mennegun’s debut drama Louise Wimmer is a bleak but dignified look at a struggling divorcee.

Another excellent IFI French Film Festival programme should provide plenty for fans of French cinema, culture, style and sophistication to enjoy so don’t miss out! Check out the full programme on www.ifi.ie/french2011 or pick up a brochure at the IFI.

Special Guests

 

Claude Miller – Leading French filmmaker – Director of I’m Glad My Mother is Alive and See How They Dance

Jean-Pierre Darroussin – Veteran actor and lead in Early One Morning

Yves Caumon – Director of The Bird and Les Filles de mon pays

Philippe Ramos – Writer, director and cinematographer of Outside Satan and The Life of Jesus

Luce Vigo – President of the Prix Jean Vigo, film critic and daughter of Jean Vigo

Michel Ciment – Leading critic, documentary filmmaker (co-writer of Once Upon A Time…A Clockwork Orange) and editor of Positif magazine.

 

 

IFI French Film Festival Schedule

Tickets are available from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or www.ifi.ie/french2011.

 

Gala Opening: The Bird (L’Oiseau)             16th Nov        18.20

 

The Bird (L’Oiseau)                                 17th Nov        18.15

 

Declaration of War (La Guerre est déclarée)         17th Nov 20.45 & 20th Nov 18.45

 

The Silence of Joan (Jeanne captive)                  18th Nov 18.15 & 19th Nov 15.30

 

Romantics Anonymous (Les Émotifs anonymes)    18th Nov 20.45

 

House of Tolerance (L’Apollonide, souvenirs de la maison close)  19th Nov 20.40

 

IFI Family Screening: Ducobu (L’Éleve Ducobu)                        20th Nov 12.00

 

His Mother’s Eyes (Les Yeux de sa mere)   20th Nov 20.45

 

Outside Satan (Hors Satan)                     21st Nov 20.30

 

Nobody Else But You (Poupoupidou)         22nd Nov 18.30 & 24th Nov 17.00

 

Pater                                                   22nd Nov 20.40 & 23rd Nov 16.00

 

Black Venus (Vénus noire)                       23rd Nov 20.00 & 24th Nov 14.00

 

Service Entrance (Les Femmes du 6ème étage)   24th Nov 20.40 & 25th Nov 15.50

 

Early One Morning     (De bon matin)         25th Nov 18.00 & Sat 26th Nov 15.45

 

The Minister (L’Exercice de l’État)             25th Nov 20.30

 

Once Upon a Time…A Clockwork Orange (Il était une fois…Orange Mécanique) 26th Nov 15.20

 

The Kid With a Bike (Le Gamin au vélo)      27th Nov 18.30

 

First Time Directors

 

Lights Out (Simon Werner a disparu…)      19th Nov 13.30 & 21st Nov 17.00

 

The End of Silence (La Fin du silence)       21st Nov 18.50

 

Louise Wimmer                                      24th Nov 19.00 & 25th Nov 14.00

 

Claude Miller Focus

 

I’m Glad my Mother is Alive (Je suis heureux que ma mere soit vivante)

                            23rd Nov 18.05 & 26th Nov 14.00

 

See How They Dance (Voyez comme ils dansent)

                            26th Nov 17.45 & 27th Nov 16.30

 

Prix Jean Vigo 60th Anniversary (19th & 20th screenings introduced by Luce Vigo)

 

The Lady with a Dog (La Dame au chien)    19th Nov 17.30          

& Smugglers’ Songs (Les Chants de Mandrin)

 

The Life of the Dead (La Vie des morts)    20th Nov 14.00

Les Filles de mon pays

 

Zéro de conduite                                   20th Nov 16.15

& L’Atalante                     

 

The Life of Jesus (La Vie de Jésus)            22nd Nov 16.30

 

French Cinema Now – Special Panel Discussion

with Michel Ciment, Jean-Pierre Darroussin and Claude Miller      26th Nov 12.00

 

Tickets are available from the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or www.ifi.ie/french2011


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2011 IFI French Film Festival Comes to Town

The 2011 IFI French Film Festival will bring the very best of French cinema to Dublin with a sumptuous line-up featuring work from the Dardenne brothers, Catherine Deneuve, Christophe Honoré and Abdellatif Kechiche, and buzzing with special guests including glamorous leading-lady Sandrine Kiberlain, leading director Claude Miller and veteran character actor Jean-Pierre Darroussin.

The IFI French Film Festival returns for twelve days this November with a fantastic programme bringing you the best of new French cinema, and a chance to rediscover the work of some of its greats. A look beyond the highlights reveals a rich and extensive programme featuring 21 Irish premieres and many of the standout films from this year’s Cannes and Venice film festivals. The Festival is also proud to present a host of special guests introducing and discussing their work, new talents with a strand of directorial debuts, and a retrospective look at the Prix Jean Vigo’s sixty years of rewarding imaginative filmmakers.

Click here for further details

 

The Festival kicks off with the Gala Opening screening of The Bird

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IFI French Film Festival: Friday

Heartbeats

Heartbeats (Les amours imaginaries) brought Friday’s proceedings to a close as the IFI French Festival headed into its final weekend. The film’s director Xavier Dolan is proving himself to be quite the prodigy. After winning over critics and audiences with his filmmaking debut J’ai tué ma mère last year, the 21-year-old Canadian actor-turned-director returns with an engaging tale of friendship, jealousy and sexual tension.

Heartbeats sets itself in the midst of a love triangle in which old friends Francis (Dolan) and Marie (superbly played by Monia Chokri) become involved in a battle to win the attention of Nicolas (Niels Scheider) who enters their lives.

Director Dolan is not afraid to flaunt the technical aspects of filmmaking and constructs hyper stylised scenes that employ OTT-coloured lighting, hypnotic slow motion and lingering close-ups alongside overstated manipulation of moods and explicit poetic imagery.

Dolan’s stylistic approach with a camera is matched by his use of music as he puts together a collection of uplifting Euro-pop tracks that sit alongside the melancholia of Bach and Wagner reflecting the film’s twin obsession with the importance of friendship and the unattainability of desire.

Heartbeats is a fresh energetic piece of filmmaking that promises much for the future of its young writer/director.

Earlier that day gave people a second chance to see 2 films that had already been screened during the festival – the powerful Outside the Law (Hors-la-loi) and the witty and insightful The Names of Love ( Le nom des gens).

Steven Galvin

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IFI French Film Festival: Thursday

After the dark humour of Mammuth, which starred Gérard Depardieu as Serge, a retiree who takes to the road on his motorbike in search of the important paperwork – I proceed to enjoy the full IFI experience and get some delicious grub and their special French wine before the later screening. So by the time In The Beginning began at 8:15pm, I was both very full and quite sleepy. This did not last long, however… as I was snapped into awakeness by the high energy and engaging nature of the film.

The incredible plot of the film is actually based on true events; a loner conman, Paul, visits a small French town, which has gone into decline after construction stopped on a highway there a number of years ago. Paul, going under the name Phillip Miller, is mistaken for an official who’s restarting the project, and tries to scam the town’s people out of cash. However when he begins to get personally involved with the locals, especially Stéphane; the beautiful mayor, his plans change. Paul/Phillip goes to unbelievable lengths and manages to fake a company, employ the locals and even begin building the road – but things begin to fall apart when his past catches up with him.

This film is very well directed, shot and is dappled with a host of great actors. Leading with a deep and believable performance is François Cluzet, but also deserving a special mention is the quirky character of Monkia (Soko) and lovable skanger, Nicolas, as played by Vincent Rottiers. Even Gérard Depardieu pops up again, as he does in most French films, as the menacing gangster, Abel.

And here is where I present the compliment sandwich: Although the tension and plot builds effortlessly, the only fault with In The Beginning is its slow paced ending that doesn’t completely satisfy. This however is only a minor disappointment, as the script, story and characters are all so strong. I would go as far as saying that In The Beginning is one of the best films I’ve seen for quite a while, and to keep the vein of good conman flicks – you should Catch It When You Can!

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IFI FRENCH FILM FESTIVAL: Wednesday

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Wednesday’s events kicked off with a 6:30 pm screening of Copacabana, and unconventional comedy by Marc Fitoussi about Babou, a mother who decides to make a few “changes” after her daughter is too embarrassed to invite her to her wedding. Having missed this offbeat comedy, I do plan on catching it again when it’s screened for a second time on Saturday, 27th November at 9 pm.

However I did make it to the quite full screening of the lovely Mademoiselle Chambon at 8.30 pm – a slow and gentle film about the relationship between a married man and his son’s teacher.

Directed by Stéphane Brizé, this film brings us through the heartbreaking turmoil of the quiet builder Jean with a number of sweet subtle shots dappled with a touch of both wry humour and deep insight. A good husband and father, Jean must collect his son from school after his attractive young wife has a minor accident in work. During his visit, he becomes enthralled after a meeting with the vulnerable and artistic Mademoiselle Véronique Chambon.

Jean’s repairing of her window, followed a chance meeting between the pair, sees the attraction between them deepen. However their growing desire to be together may not be enough as events transpire against them. With some superb performances from Vincent Lindon (Jean), Sandrine Kiberlain (Véronique Chambon) and Aure Atika (Anne-Marie), the profound unspoken turmoil invoked by the unfortunate romance is both believable and at times unsettlingly realistic.

Mademoiselle Chambon, which Brizé adapted from a novel by Eric Holder, is a very unique yet simple story, which translated into a very enjoyable piece of cinema.

Click here for details of the festival’s programme of events.

Gemma Creagh

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IFI French Film Festival: Tuesday

Mammuth

Mammuth provided plenty of laughs on Tuesday night screening as part of the IFI French Film festival. Written and directed by Gustave de Kervern and Benoît Delépine, the film tells the tale of the newly retired Mammuth (Gérard Depardieu) who sets off on a road trip on his motorcycle in search of the necessary paperwork from his previous jobs he’s had down the years in order to claim his pension. Along the way he experiences bizarre moments and encounters a strange collection of oddball characters, including a ghost from his past played by Isabelle Adjani.

Though someway losing its way toward the end, there’s no denying the enjoyment the audience shared watching the film. The humour is well observed and succeeds in marrying the painfully real with the surreal, as his post-retirement experiences erupt into moments of absurdity. There are certain scenes, such as the four men in the restaurant, which slowly build up titters in the audience but climax to a collective burst of laughter coupled with prolonged moments of absurdist humour such as bizarre reunions with family members that end up in failed nostalgia-driven attempts at shared gratification – you’ll know when you see it.

The final part in which Mammuth ‘finds’ himself is a bit overdone but by that time the writers have done enough to forgive them their trespasses. Depardieu is in fine form here, although Yolande Moreau steals the film when she’s on screen in her hilarious role as his wife whose patience is constantly tested. Her determination to take vengeance on the person who has stolen her phone is a brilliant comic sequence.

All in all Mammuth is a a wonderfully weird experience.

Tuesday also offered people a second chance to see Making Plans for Léna (Non ma fille, tu n’iras pas danser), which had previously screened on Friday, and there was also the screening of Memory Lane, Mikhaël Hers’ directorial debut which focuses on a group of childhood friends who, having gone their separate ways, all meet up in Paris and reestablish the close bond of friendship they once shared.

Click here for details of the festival’s programme of events.

Steven Galvin

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IFI French Film Festival: Monday

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Outside the Law (Hors-la-loi) burned up the screen on Monday night at the IFI French Film Festival to a full house. Rachid Bouchareb’s eagerly anticipated film is a powerful tale of three brothers who survive the Sétif massacre in French-occupied Algeria in 1945 after WWII and relocate to Paris and organise the underground Algerian independence movement. Bouchareb’s film has become infamous at this stage for causing over 1o00 protestors to gather in the face of riot police to denounce the film’s ‘anti-French’ and ‘pro-terrorist’ stance at this year Cannes Film Festival. There must have been a few empty posh bars along the Boulevard De La Croisette that night.

Outside the Law tells the story of three brothers who in their different ways become entwined within the struggle to secure Algerian independence in Paris. Abdelkader (Sami Bouajila) is released from prison after serving a sentence for radical activity. Messaoud (Roschdy Zem) is a veteran of France’s war in Indochina. Saïd (Jamel Debouze) runs a nightclub and trains a young Algerian boxer. Abdelkader is the force behind the brothers’ attempts at a bloody revolution and Bouajila’s performance is a commanding portrayal of determination and total belief in the extremes he and his fellow countrymen must go to secure what is rightfully theirs. The film never shies away from pointing out how people are forced to violent extremes when political options are denied them.

Bouchareb handles the action sequences with great skill and keeps a tight rein on the epic scope of the film that spans numerous years maintaining a pace that belies its 138-minute running time. Outside the Law is a potent piece of filmmaking that asks questions of French cinema to open itself up to deal with its nation’s colonial past.

Outside the Law screens again on Friday, 26th November at 16.00.

Earlier that day saw the screening of Restless (Le bel âge), Laurent Perreau’s directorial debut. A coming of age tale with a strong central performance by Pauline Ettiene, the film focuses on Claire, a restless teenager struggling to shape her future and unable to communicate with her cranky grandfather with whom she lives.

Click here for details of the festival’s programme of events.

Steven Galvin

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