The best of France’s contemporary movies
The French Film Festival in Israel celebrates 10 years of cinema.
cycling with moliere Photo: courtesy
Celebrate a decade of French cinema at the 10th French Film Festival in Israel,
which will run this year from March 9-19 at the cinematheques in Jerusalem, Tel
Aviv, Haifa, Sderot, Rosh Pina, Holon and Herzliya.
This year’s festival
offers the best of contemporary French cinema and will be attended by many of
France’s most acclaimed directors. It includes the popular new feature Alceste
on a Bicycle, from director Philippe Le Guay, who directed last year’s
well-reviewed film The Women on the 6th Floor, about Spanish maids working for
upper-class Parisian households. Alceste on a Bicycle (called Moliere on
a Bicycle in Hebrew) stars Fabrice Luchini, the actor who played the Parisian
bourgeois boss in The Women on the 6th Floor. It’s also co-written by Luchini,
who uses the film to celebrate his deep love for the works of Moliere. Luchini
co-stars with Lambert Wilson, and the two play very different actors who are
trying to get a new production of Moliere’s play Le Misanthrope off the ground.
Le Guay and Wilson will attend the festival to present the film.
Lvovsky, the director/writer/star of the time-traveling comedy Camille Rewinds,
will be present at screenings of the film. She plays a woman who gets a chance
to see what her life would have been like if she had made different decisions.
In the film, Camille meets the love of her life, Eric, while in high school.
They marry and have a child, then he dumps her for another woman when Camille is
over 40. The film explores whether she should do anything differently when she
gets the chance.
Cedric Kahn is coming to show his latest film, A Better
Life, at the festival. It stars Guillaume Canet in an award-winning performance
as a kitchen worker who hopes to become a chef. When he meets his dream woman,
they borrow money to buy property so they can open their own restaurant. He also
becomes close to her nine-year-old son. But when they encounter problems with
their new venture, the girlfriend heads to Canada for what she says will be a
short visit, and he is left taking care of her son. What follows has been
compared to a working-class version of Kramer vs. Kramer. Scott Thomas and Isabelle Carré.
Lorraine Levy, the director of The Other
Son, a drama about two families, one Israeli and one Palestinian, who discover
that their children – now teens – were switched at birth, will also be
coming. Levy will be accompanied by Rafael Berdugo, one of the film’s
producers. Levy directed the enormously charming 2004 film The First Time I
Among the other directors who will be coming is Edith Zavole,
the director of Mander Street, the story of a Jewish family coping with a
The festival will feature a tribute to late director Claude
Miller (he passed away in April 2012), featuring his last film, Therese
Desqueyroux , an adaptation of the Francois Mauriac novel, starring Audrey
Tautou. Several of Miller’s other films will be shown at the
Other films to be screened include Café de Flore, a drama
featuring several parallel love stories, starring Vanessa
Paradis. Bowling is a popular comedy about a hospital
strike. Cloclo is a biopic of French singing star Claude Francois,
starring Jeromie Renier, which traces the singer’s childhood in Egypt to his
untimely death in France in the late 1970s. And Our Children is Yoachim
Lafosse’s look at a couple who lose control of their own lives and children when
they move in with the wife’s well-to-do family.
The festival is sponsored
by the cultural department of the French Embassy and the Eden Cinema company.
The French television channel TV5Monde, which has been broadcast in Israel for
20 years, also helped create the festival.
For detailed schedule
information and tickets, check the websites of the participating cinematheques