Things To Come
Isabelle Huppert is stoic to a fault as she experiences a terrible, no good, very bad year, in Mia Hansen Love’s glorious Things To Come. One by one, the foundations of her comfortable life start to weaken, and the academic confronts the reality of middle age minus the people, places and the profession by which she’s defined herself. An intelligent, empathetic and genuinely moving film, full of small moments that speak volumes. Pick of the festival.
Septuagenarian André Téchiné (Wild Reeds) taps back into the tumult of being a queer teenager in this vibrant spin on the coming-of-age drama. Over 12 months, a forced truce between violent rivals develops into something much stronger, and a shared family drama unearths a latent, confusing, potentially dangerous attraction. Co-writer Celine Sciamma (Tomboy, Girlhood) reinforces her talent for writing about transformative moments of adolescence, and Sandrine Kilberlain gets a fully developed role as a woman /doctor/working mum spreading herself too thin.
Heal The Living
Brace yourself for an assault on your heart and your tear ducts, with this bittersweet story of two patients on life support, and the potential organ donation that connects them. Katell Quillevere (Suzanne) directs a superb cast of Tahar Rahim, Emmanuelle Siegner, Anne Dorval and Bouli Lanners, across a turbulent day of anguish and devastating decisions.
All About Eve meets the Belle Epoque in this story of passion, ambition – and strobe-lit billowing cotton. The Dancer charts the rise of cabaret performer Loie Fuller, whose mesmerising blend of choreography, costuming and production design made her the toast of Paris. Fuller’s success exacerbates her social anxieties, and she comes to rely on her ambitious protégée, Isadora Duncan, whose motives are never fully clear. The Dancer screened in the Un Certain regard sidebar of the 2016 Cannes Film Festival and features standout performances from Soko, Lily Rose Depp and Gaspard Ulliel.
A Journey Through French Cinema
Veteran French writer-director Bertrand Tavernier dives deep into the archives of French film history with his personal tribute to Gallic greats - both known and overlooked (it ain't all New Wave). The three-hour opus is akin to his contemporary Martin Scorsese’s own sprawling citation of cinematic influences, My Voyage to Italy.
The Alliance Française French Film Festival opens in Sydney on March 7 and travels nationally throughout the month. Full festival details and program can be found here.
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