Sunday, March 21, 2010

FFF2010 Quick Reference Guide

This year I previewed ten films prior to the opening of the French Film Festival, and that number is growing as I get to more of the screenings. My comments on each film (or you can click on the individual links below) never include spoilers, but if you don't have the time to check these out and just want a quick one-liner recommendation, here are my thoughts at a glance:

  • The Army of Crime. Robert Guédiguian at his best, with his take on a true French Resistance story.
  • Father of My Children. Quite sublime, works on multiple levels. Justly compared to Summer Hours.
  • Ricky. A beautiful addition to the oeuvre of one of France's most interesting directors, screening in Melbourne at ACMI.
  • White Material. If, like me, you're a Claire Denis fan, this is must-see. For others, as per my category title, it's still definitely worth-seeing.
  • Wild Grass. An eclectic take on love and longing that may be must-see for Alain Resnais devotees - I'm not yet, but my affection is growing after seeing this.
  • Making Plans for Lena. Honoré at his best, one of his most accessible yet uncompromising films.
  • Tomorrow at Dawn. Very clever psychological thriller worthy of Hitchcock.
  • Bellamy. More Hitcockian influence, but slow-burn and more mystery than suspense.
  • Korkoro. A new multi-layer angle on WWII, combining gypsies and the resistance.

  • OSS 177, Lost in Rio. Just for laughs, a James Bond-type spoof.
  • First Snow. Good one to see with your kids.
  • Every Jack Has a Jill. Silly title, silly film but worth seeing for Mélanie Laurent (Inglourious Basterds).
  • Lucky Luke. Good fun for kids; gets a bit silly for adults-only.
  • Micmacs. Good fun for all ages; not his best but probably Jeunet's most mainstream film.
  • Little Nicolas. Entertaining, one for the kids.


Anonymous said...

Hi Paul I know my taste is different to yours but 2 films in I think I've found my pick of the festival in "You'll miss me" which saw at the Como yesterday. Review comning up on IMDB. Sun we saw "Madamoseille Chambon" which has totally put out my Vincent London obsession and totally put me off the lead actress who was once London's partner or wife.

There's a lot of films to see at these festivals. I think it's important to recognize the genres you like and stick with these.

You'll miss me has a terrific cast, some of whom I've seen in supporting roles in earlier films. Here they all shine and it makes me wonder why the hell we're not seeing more of some of these actors (the wonderful Carole Bouquet for example) instead of all the hacks like Charlotte Rampling, Jean Paul D and Andre Dussolier. No doubt some of these actors are favourites of the directors a little like how Norman Kaye and Chris Heywood were all in Paul whathisnames films in Australia.

I think as they get older we've seen enough of the ugly dial of Gerard Depardui for example. Give some of the other fine French actors a go!

Cheers John

Anonymous said...

Paul whathisname is of course Paul Cox