fri 22/11/2019

French cinema

The Best Films Out Now

There are films to meet every taste in theartsdesk's guide to the best movies currently on release. In our considered opinion, any of the titles below is well worth your attention.After the Wedding ★★★★ Starry cast bring gravitas to knotty drama...

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By the Grace of God review - a dark, meticulous drama from François Ozon

This is a departure in every sense for François Ozon. The prolific French director has established himself as a master of ludic style in past dramas played out by predominantly female casts, the exceptions, among them his sad black-and-white period...

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Non-Fiction - adultery spices up digitisation drama

It isn’t provable whether adultery is more accepted in French bourgeois life than in that of other countries, but French films often suggest it’s nothing to get in a lather about. Olivier Assayas’s Non-Fiction, in which three of the four main...

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San Sebastian Film Festival: Proxima review – Eva Green has The Right Stuff

Proxima is a very special, very beautiful space movie, one of those that are more concerned with the bread-and-butter reality of getting people into space – practically, emotionally, psychologically – than with the starry shenanigans themselves...

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The Shock of the Future review - for the music nerds

The Shock of the Future is for anyone who's watched a music biopic and thought "that's not how it works!" Directed and co-written by Marc Collin of Nouvelle Vague fame, it's perhaps the most realisitic film about recording music ever made. But as...

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A Faithful Man review - an atypical romance

There were some early warning signs that A Faithful Man might be another box-ticking French romcom. The poster of two women kissing one man, his bemused look in the middle. The lethargic narration referencing childhood and the mysteries of the...

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Varda by Agnès review - a richly moving film farewell

French director Agnès Varda looks back over a cinematic career of seven decades in this a richly moving film farewell, finished not long before her death at the end of March, aged 90. It’s structured around a series of masterclasses in which she...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Sauvage

Anyone who saw Félix Maritaud playing the angry activist Max in Robin Campillo’s Paris ACT UP drama 120 BPM will certainly remember him (main picture). He came to the film as a non-professional, from an arts student background, and builds on that...

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DVD: The House by the Sea

Robert Guediguian has spoken of the influence of Chekhov on The House by the Sea (Le Villa), and the shadow of the Russian dramatist, particularly The Cherry Orchard, can certainly be felt in the French director’s latest film, his 20th in a career...

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Interview with director Agnès Varda, who has died at 90

I met Agnès Varda, who died today aged 90, just once, for the interview that’s reproduced below. It was in Paris in January 2018, shortly before the Belgian-born filmmaker was to become the oldest Oscar nominee in history, for the wonderful...

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Mektoub, My Love: Canto Uno review - cold carnal overdose from Kechiche

Abdellatif Kechiche, the Tunisian-French director, is perhaps best known for the lengthy and explicit sex scenes in La vie d’Adèle (Blue is the Warmest Colour). His latest film opens, slam in your face, with a sequence of passionate love-making:...

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An Impossible Love review - toxic romance across the years

This is a love that begins sweetly, turns terrible, and is told with unflinching directness. Directed by Catherine Corsini, An Impossible Love is based on a novel by Christine Angot (known in France, and increasingly elsewhere, for her powerful...

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