Mathieu Amalric’s “Barbara,” a transfixing film about the celebrated French singer, will kick off the 23rd edition of Rendez-Vous With French Cinema in New York, the festival co-organized by The Film Society of Lincoln Center and UniFrance.
The Rendez-Vous will showcase 24 movies directed by a wide range of directors, from emerging helmers to well-established directors. The lineup includes Eric Toledano and Olivier Nakache’s dramedy “C’est la vie!” (pictured); Albert Dupontel’s comic caper set in Jazz Age Paris “See You Up There”; Laurent Cantet’s “The Workshop”; Hubert Charuel’s “Petit Paysan”; Xavier Legrand’s harrowing domestic drama “Custody,” winner of Venice’s Silver Lion; and Xavier Beauvois’ “The Guardians,” a female-centered set against the backdrop of World War I.
Other titles set to unspool at the Rendez-Vous include Léonor Serraille’s complex portrait of a newly single woman “Montparnasse Bienvenüe,” winner of Cannes’ Golden Camera; Tonie Marshall’s feminist drama “Number One”; Jean-Paul Civeyrac’s coming-of-age drama “A Paris Education”; Noémie Lvovsky’s mother-daughter tale, “Tomorrow and Thereafter”; Nobuhiro Suwa’s ghost story “The Lion Sleeps Tonight,” with Jean-Pierre Léaud; Eugène Green’s “Waiting for the Barbarians”; Bruno Dumont’s “Jeannette, the Childhood of Joan of Arc”; Emmanuel Finkiel’s “A Memoir of War”; Léa Mysius’ “Ava,” and others.
“The level of originality and artistry exhibited in this year’s lineup serves as proof that French cinema today is as innovative and creative as ever,” said Florence Almozini, the associate director of programming at Film Society of Lincoln Center.
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“We are so pleased to be partnering again with UniFrance to bring you incredible stories, so many of which are anchored by strong, complex female leads, including outstanding performances by the likes of Jeanne Balibar and Emmanuelle Devos and unforgettable newcomers Laetitia Dosch and Iris Bry,” added Almozini.
Isabelle Giordano, the executive director of UniFrance, said the festival will “showcase a wide variety of women’s stories – films about women’s resilience during times of war, millennial women trying to find their place in the world, the glass ceiling, and even the childhood of a young girl destined to become a legend.”
Giordano pointed out that bold new French voices, such as Mysius, Serraille, Maryam Goormaghtigh, and Marine Francen, will be introduced to American audiences during that week.
Aside from screenings, the Rendez-Vous will also feature two panels, one of which will focus on female empowerment and the place of women in the French film and corporate industries. The other roundtable will discuss first-time feature films.
The year’s guest roster includes the directors Amalric, Legrand, Cantet, Dumont, Green, Beauvois, Finkiel, Marshall and Serraille, as well as Gilles Bourdos, Raymond Depardon, and thesps Balibar and Vincent Macaigne.
In a side section titled “Salut les Jeunes,” the festival will also highlight films about the experiences of young people today. The festival will, in parallel, host a contest for millennials who will have the opportunity to write a review of a film playing at the Rendez-Vous.