Director : Pierre-William Glenn
Crew : VCUart Cinema and La Fémis students
Presentation by and discussion with director Pierre-William Glenn
Thursday, March 21 – 6:30 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 40 min • General Audience • Free Screening
“The 20th French Film Festival – Richmond, Virginia, has been the culmination of Françoise and Peter Kirkpatrick’s dedication and commitment to French Cinema’s cause. During last year’s splendid 20th anniversary, we were able to witness the convergence of American and French inspiration, inventiveness, and talents, since the cinematograph was invented.
To be 20 in Richmond, symbolically shot by French film students from la Fémis and American film production students from VCU, is a documentary about the 2012 Symposium. This event purported to subjects as technical creation and the role of the “technician artist” in French cinema. It involved directors, film technicians, cinematographic industry specialists, experts in environmental sciences, as well as health and culture, film students and film critics from France and the United States.”
French Director and Cinematographer
President of the CST (Commission Supérieure Technique de l’Image et du Son)
Professor of Cinematography at La Fémis-Paris
Director : Jean Achache
Screenplay : Jean Achache, Guy Zilberstein
Starring : Thierry Hancisse, Elise Caron, Marilyne Canto, Anne Kessler
Presentation by and discussion with director Jean Achache and producer Charles Paviot
Thursday, March 21 – 8:00 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h28 • General Audience
Simon Nardis, a former jazz pianist with an international reputation, has been leading a quiet life for ten years with his wife and family. But his life takes a whole new direction when he passes by a jazz club one night. He finds himself face to face with the demons that it has taken him so much time to overcome: music, alcohol and doubts. He is hooked by the club’s atmosphere and his encounter with Debbie, the club owner.
Director : Gilles Bourdos
Screenplay : Jérôme Tonnerre, Gilles Bourdos
Starring : Michel Bouquet, Vincent Rottiers, Christa Theret, Thomas Doret
Thursday, March 21 – 10:10 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h51 • General Audience
The Côte d’Azur,1915. In his twilight years, celebrated impressionist painter Pierre-Auguste Renoir is tormented by the loss of his wife, the pains of arthritis and the terrible news that his son Jean has been wounded in action. But when a young girl miraculously enters his world, the old painter is filled with a new, wholly unexpected energy. Blazing with life, radiantly beautiful, Andrée will become his last model and the wellspring of a remarkable rejuvenation. Back at the family home to convalesce, Jean too falls under the spell of the new, redheaded star in the Renoir firmament. In their Mediterranean Eden- and in the face of his father’s fierce opposition- he falls in love with this wild, untamable spirit. . . and as he does so, within weak-willed, battle-shaken Jean, a filmmaker begins to grow.
Director : Lucas Belvaux
Screenplay : Lucas Belvaux
Starring : Yvan Attal, Sophie Quinton, Nicole Garcia
Friday, March 22 – 3:00 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h44 • Parental Guidance
When she comes home after a business trip in China, Louise discovers that her street has been the site of a crime, a fatal attack against a young woman. No witnesses, everyone was asleep. . . so they say. Apparently Pierre, her husband, was working. According to him, he was at sea. Or so the story goes. The police investigators carry out an investigation, as do the media.
Director : Valérie Donzelli
Screenplay : Valérie Donzelli, Jérémie Elkaïm, Gilles Marchand
Starring : Valérie Lemercier, Jérémie Elkaïm, Béatrice de Staël, Valérie Donzelli
Friday, March 22 – 5:00 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h25 • General Audience
When Helene Marchal and Joachim Fox meet, their lives could hardly be more different. Helene runs the prestigious ballet school of the Paris Opera. A bit of a snob, she shares her life with her old friend Constance. Joachim works for a mirror maker, far from the hustle and bustle of Paris. He loves skateboarding and lives with his sister and her husband, who manage the local gym club.
But when their paths cross by chance, a strange power suddenly works its spell on them. Without understanding how or why, they can no longer be apart. It’s physically impossible. If one leaves the room, the other follows. If one walks off in one direction, the other catches up and follows. If Helene raises her arm, Joachim reaches his out to her. And when he steps to the side, she moves with him.
From the moment they meet – and against their will – Helene and Joachim begin a lovers’ dance they are powerless to stop.
Director : Raoul Peck
Screenplay : Raoul Peck
Presentation by and discussion with director Raoul Peck
Friday, March 22 – 7:00 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h40 • General Audience
Award-winning Haitian-born filmmaker Raoul Peck invites us inside his 2-year investigation of the challenging, contradictory and colossal rebuilding efforts in post-earthquake Haiti. Fatal Assistance powerfully illustrates the work behind the scenes and the twists and turns of international aid in Haiti, all the while questioning its impact and consequences.
Director : Fabrice Cazeneuve
Screenplay : Fabrice Cazeneuve, Jean-Claude Grumberg
Starring : Adelaïde Leroux, Salomé Stévenin, Mélodie Richard
Presentation by and discussion with actress Salomé Stévenin
Friday, March 22 – 9:15 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h37 • General Audience
WWII. While fighting their way to Paris and beyond, some 6,500 American recruits fell in love and married French girls. An overwhelmed U.S. Army set up “cigarette” camps – Camp Chesterfield, Camp Lucky Strike – to “Americanize” the brides before joining their new American in-laws. Cigarettes & Nylons follows three young women through their hope, trials and tribulations, love and heartbreak, in a time when even as the world was burning, young hearts were set aflame.
Director : Jean-Christophe Dessaint
Screenplay : Amandine Taffin
Starring : Jean Reno, Lorànt Deutsch, Isabelle Carré, Claude Chabrol
Presentation by and discussion with screenwriter Amandine Taffin
Saturday, March 23 – 10:20 a.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h36 • General Audience
The young Courge lives in the heart of the forest, raised by his father, a tyrannical giant who reigns triumphant over his domain and prevents his son from exploring beyond its boundaries. Isolated from civilization, the boy grows up wild, with for only companions the placid ghosts who haunt the forest. That is until the day he will venture to the nearest village, where he meets young Manon. . .
Director : Patrica Mazuy
Screenplay : Simon Reggiani
Starring : Marina Hands, Bruno Ganz, Josiane Balasko, Amanda Harlech
Presentation by and discussion with director Patricia Mazuy and actress Josiane Balasko
Saturday, March 23 – 12:30 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h41 • General Audience
Enraged by the sale of the jumping horse that she was promised to ride, Gracieuse, a highly talented equestrian, quits her job at the stable. She starts again from the beginning accepting work as a groom at a dressage stud farm adjacent to her father’s property. The owner, Joséphine de Silène, exploits with an iron grip the international reputation of a German trainer, Franz Mann. The former champion, now cynical and worn out, is still coveted by female riders the world over, for his knowledge as well as for his attention.
In this microcosm of power and money, no one is paying attention to Gracieuse, whose only assets are her talent, her fiercely stubborn character, and, most particularly, her determination to succeed. Restless, ready to stand up to Franz Mann and to face any obstacle, even if it means stepping outside the law, she pursues her sole obsession: to have a horse to call her own, and to take it to the top.
Director : Phillipe Lellouche
Screenplay : Frédéric Petitjean
Starring : Gérard Darmon, Julie Gayet, Philippe Lellouche, Vanessa Demouy, Christian Vadim
Presentation by and discussion with actress Julie Gayet
Saturday, March 23 – 2:40 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h34 • General Audience
During the heat wave of July 1976, Claude and Isabelle spend their summer vacations with their two young sons, Simon (12) and Bibou (8), Isabelle’s mother, and two couples who are dear friends. Isabelle is originally from Brittany. She is the one who has chosen the small village of her birth, Rocher Abraham, as their summer destination. Claude is Jewish, originally from Algeria. Locals whose accent is as rough as their manners greet the group with suspicion. The coexistence is not easy between Parisians and country-folk, Jews and Bretons. But, gradually, old resentments, past hatred and prejudices are swept away to make room for friendship, emotions, puppy-loves and rekindled romances. These are precious moments, never to be forgotten. In Rocher Abraham, twenty miles away from the sea, Bibou and Simon carve out for themselves an unforgettable summer. Their most memorable vacation!
Director : Eric Besnard
Screenplay : Eric Besnard
Starring : Josiane Balasko, Gérard Jugnot, Clovis Cornillac, Pierre Richard, Magaly Berdy
Presentation by and discussion with actress Josiane Balasko
Saturday, March 23 – 4:45 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h27 • General Audience
Maxime works overtime to save his ambulance company, at the risk of alienating his wife and children. When he learns that his mother has been arrested, he gets her out of prison. Only to be reprimanded. Olga, his mother, can be difficult, to say the least, and he discovers that she has once again had an argument with his father. Maxime decides to accompany her back home. It will be a chance to spend a weekend far away from his responsibilities and worries. His parents, both in their sixties, have been together forty years, loving each other as much as they fight with one another. This joyful interlude in his hectic life will be an opportunity for the son to find his roots once again. Life may well be ephemeral and unfair, but it can also a series of happy and fun moments. And even more so, with his parents having an unexpected guest. . .
Director : Géraldine Maillet
Screenplay : Géraldine Maillet
Starring : Julie Gayet, Raphaël Personnaz, Ahmed, Bakari Sangare, Brisa Roché
Presentation by and discussion with actress Julie Gayet
Saturday, March 23 – 10:00 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h23 • General Audience
Paris – One night. A woman and a man meet in a restaurant. Julie is beautiful, married, leading an uneventful life. Guillaume is impulsive, seductive, free. She is shy, he is bewitched. He is a smooth talker, she stays on her guard. He tries, she avoids. They are clumsy and embarrassed. He over does it, she resists with biting humor … Still, an intense relationship starts. During the night, masks fall off and the seduction game gives in to sincere feelings. Will this love last over a night?
Director : Laura Morante
Screenplay : Laura Morante, Danièle Constantini
Starring : Laura Morante, Pascal Elbé, Isabelle Carré, Samir Guesmi
Saturday, March 23 – Midnight at the Byrd Theater • 1h23 • General Audience
Amanda suffers from androphobia, a real fear of men, which drives her to systematically destroy any love relationship that might become serious.
Florence, her best friend, dreams of seeing her commit to a stable and harmonious emotional relationship. She insists that Amanda doesn’t stay alone at home on New Year’s Eve and manages to convince her to come to the party. . . and the story begins.
Director : Béatrice Pollet
Screenplay : Béatrice Pollet
Starring : Joséphine de Meaux, Patrick Catalifo, Dominique Reymond, Fanny Cottençon, Carmen Maria Vega
Presentation by and discussion with director Béatrice Pollet
Sunday, March 24 – 10:00 a.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h28 • General Audience
Passionate archeologist, Anna Brahé keeps excavating a wide underground passage for months. She is convinced that she is about to find some tombs. Her impatient and skeptical boss decides to dispatch a famous archeologist Peter Morel to estimate his workmate discoveries. Even though they were completely different, the collapsing of the cave made them closer.
Director : Carine Tardieu
Screenplay : Carine Tardieu, Raphaëlle Moussafir
Starring : Agnès Jaoui, Denis Podalydès, Isabelle Carré, Isabella Rossellini
Presentation by and discussion with director Carine Tardieu
Sunday, March 24 – 12:05 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h29 • Parental Guidance Plus
Stuck between her parents, who smother her with love, and constant blunders, nine-year-old Rachel counts the minutes separating her from freedom. Until the day her path crosses that of intrepid Valérie.
Directors : Matthieu Delaporte, Alexandre de la Patellière
Screenplay : Matthieu Delaporte, Alexandre de la Patellière
Starring : Patrick Bruel, Valérie Benguigui, Charles Berling, Guillaume de Tonquedec, Judith El Zein
Presentation by and discussion with directors Matthieu Delaporte and Alexandre de la Patellière
Sunday, March 24 – 2:10 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h49 • General Audience
Vincent, a successful, and in his 40s, is about to be a father for the first time. He is invited to a dinner party at his sister and brother-in-law’s, Pierre and Elisabeth, where he is joined by his childhood friend, Claude. Awaiting the arrival of Anna, his young wife who is always running late, the guests bombard Vincent with generally good-humored questions about his impending fatherhood. However, when they ask Vincent if he has already chosen a name for his future son, his response plunges the family into complete dismay. . .
Director : Claude Miller
Screenplay : Claude Miller, Nathalie Carter
Starring : Audrey Tautou, Gilles Lellouche, Anaïs Demoustier, Catherine Arditi
Presentation by and discussion with Annie Miller
Sunday, March 24 – 4:40 p.m at the Byrd Theater • 1h50 • General Audience
In the Southwest region of France, the Landes, marriages are arranged to combine land parcels and unite rich families. Thus, young Thérèse Larroque becomes Mrs. Desqueyroux; but this young avant-gardiste woman does not intend to comply with provincial conventions. To free herself from the fate imposed upon her, she will stop at nothing to fully-live her life.
Director : Jean Becker
Screenplay : Jean Becker, François d’Epenoux
Starring : Patrick Chesnais, Jeanne Lambert, Miou Miou, Jacques Weber, Xavier Gallais
Sunday, March 24 – 7:40 p.m. at the Byrd Theater • 1h30 • General Audience
Despite his fame, Taillandier has suddenly stopped painting. Deeply depressed, the sixty-year-old decides to leave everything. He has no clear goal and no explanation to give to his friends. During his travels, he stumbles upon Marylou, a wild teenager who has been rejected by her mother. The lost girl and the man at the end of his tether will follow the same path for a while. Like father and daughter, finally at peace.