14th French Film Festival | Manila



The festival opens on Friday, June 5, 2009 at 6:30 p.m.

at the Grand Atrium Level 2 of Shangri-La Plaza



The 62nd Cannes film festival marks a milestone in the history of Philippine cinema as Brillante “Dante” Mendoza becomes the first Filipino to be awarded the “Best Director” prize for his film “Kinatay.” 2009 will also be remembered as the year that saw five Filipino films in the different sections of the festival: “Kinatay” in the Official Competition, “Independencia” by Raya Martin in Un Certain Regard, “Manila” byAdolfo Alix, Jr and Raya Martin in the Special Screening, “Sabongero” by Janice Perez and “Manong Maong” by Aissa Peñafiel and Miguel Ocampo in the Short Film Corner.  

In celebration of this event, the 14th French Film Festival in Manila will be held from June 5-14, 2009 at the Shang Cineplex of Shangri-La Plaza. It will feature a retrospective of 14 French films which have been presented at the Cannes film festival, as well as a sneak preview of the Filipino film “Independencia”, which premiered at Cannes earlier this month. 

The festival will open on June 5 with the film “Home” by the famous French photographer Yann Arthus Bertrand. Shot entirely from the sky in high definition,“Home” is a documentary about the stunning beauty of our planet and the alarming danger it faces. It will also be the first movie to be released simultaneously on all media (theatre, TV, DVD and Internet) across 5 continents, as part of World Environment Day, which also be celebrated worldwide on June 5 (www.goodplanet.org). 

On June 12, Independence Day, the festival will present a sneak preview of“Independencia”. Produced by Arleen Cuevas, the film has received assistance from the French government through the Fonds Sud Cinema, a grant offered by the French Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs. 

There will be four screenings each day of the festival. All films are open to the public with free admission on a first-come, first-served basis. The French films that will be screened include François Truffaut’s “Les 400 Coups”(1959), André Téchiné’s “Ma Saison Préférée” (1993), Michael Haneke’s “La Pianiste” (2001) and Benoît Jaquot’s “A tout de suite”(2004). For screening schedules, you may call 633-2277 or visit www.spot.ph

For Filipino cinephiles who will not be able to attend the Manila screenings, there will also be a French Film Festival in Cebu which will run from June 19-21 at the Ayala Center Cebu. This event will feature many of the same films that will be shown in Manila. 

The French Film Festival is organized by the French Embassy to the Philippines, together with CulturesFrance and Alliance Française de Manille, with the generous support of Shangri-La Plaza, the Shang Cineplex, Pioneer Films and Spot.ph. The French Film Festival in Cebu is organized through the efforts of Les Amis de la France and with the cooperation of the Arts Council of Cebu, and Ayala Center Cebu. 

The logo of the festival shows the intertwined laurel branch of the Cannes Film Festival and a coconut branch to symbolize the strong cultural ties between France and the Philippines through cinema.


Director: Claire Simon
Cast: Camille Varenne, Gilbert Melki, Olivia Willaumez, Kader Mohamed, Marion Maintenay, Morgane Moré, Jean-Quentin Châtelain, Nabil Radi, Mathieu Bagnis
Running time: 1h 51mn
She lives in the Var, she has a horse, and she’s angry.
The exalted love story of an adolescent 15-year-old, with a local man: Jean, 37 years old, teacher, voluntary fireman, married and father of two. It’s the beginning of vacation and the eternity of summer.

Director: Benoît Jacquot
Cast: Isild Le Besco, Ouassini Embarek, Nicolas Duvauchelle, Laurence Cordier, Fotini Kodoukaki, Catherine Davenier, Nicolas Pignon, David Ayala, Odile Vuillemin, Léonor Graser, Emmanuelle Bercot, Olivier Augrond, Sabri Lahmer, Fatiha Chériguene
Running time : 1h 35mn
Set in the 1970s, A Tout de Suite is the story of a 19-year-old girl who discovers that her lover, seemingly a Prince Charming, is actually a thief who has just committed murder. “Tout de suite,” instantly, her safe and comfortable world is turned upside down and she is swept into an adventure that takes her from Spain to Morocco and Greece.

Director: Michael Haneke
Cast: Isabelle Huppert, Benoît Magimel, Annie Girardot, Anna Sigalevitch, Susanne Lothar, Udo Samel
Running Time: 2h 10mn
Erika Kohut, 40 years old, is a respectable piano teacher at the Conservatory of Vienna. Living a single life, hardened by a possessive mother, she is a musician who leads a frustrated sex life. Frequenting peep shows and watching porno films, Erika dives into a morbid voyeurism and practices masochism. Until one day, when Walter, a 20-something student falls in love with her. From this affection is born a troubled relationship, emotional and perverted, between master and disciple.

Director: Robert Guédiguian
Cast: Ariane Ascaride, Jean-Pierre Darroussin, Gérard Meylan, Julie-Marie Parmentier, Jacques Boudet, Yann Trégouët, Frédérique Bonnal, Souhade Temimi, Maïa Sevleyan, Frédéric Garbe, Danielle Stefan, Jacques Germain, Axel Koehler
Running Time: 2h 5mn
Marie-Jo loves her husband Daniel dearly, but is also passionately in love with her lover Marco. She is torn between the two, with tragic consequences.

Director: Bruno Dumont
Cast: Adélaïde Leroux, Samuel Boidin, Inge Decaesreker, Patrice Venant, Henri Cretel, Jean-Marie Bruveart, David Poulain, David Legay
Running Time: 1h 31mn
In Flanders, Demester other and young local men enlist as soldiers to fight in a distant land. He also falls in love deeply with the young Barbe, even accepting her strange ways and her many lovers. Tragically, the war exacerbates the relationship between them, leading them to extremes.


Director: Claude Miller
Cast: Cécile De France, Patrick Bruel, Ludivine Sagnier, Julie Depardieu, Mathieu Amalric, Nathalie Boutefeu, Yves Jacques, Sam Garbarski, Orlando Nicoletti, Valentin Vigourt, Robert Plagnol, Eric Godon, Philippe Grimbert, Quentin Dubuis, Myriam Fuks, Michel Israel, Arthur Mazet, Annie Savarin, Yves Verhoeven
Running time: 1h 40mn
A story of passions and dark family secrets, as told through the eyes of François, an only child who creates a make-believe brother and imagines the past of his parents. On his 15th birthday, a family friend reveals to François a disturbing but illuminating truth.

DIX-SEPT FOIS CECILE CASSARD (Seventeen times Cecile Cassard)
Director: Christophe Honoré
Cast: Béatrice Dalle, Romain Duris, Jeanne Balibar, Ange Ruzé, Johan Oderio-Robles, Tiago Manaïa, Jérôme Kircher, Julien Collet, Lisa Lacroix, Assaad Bouab, Fabio Zenoni
Running time: 1h 45mn
17 fois Cecile Cassard is seventeen portraits of a young woman who attempts to rebuild her life…

Director: Abdellatif Kechiche
Cast: Osman Elkharraz, Sara Forestier, Sabrina Ouazani, Nanou Benahmou, Hafet Ben-Ahmed, Aurélie Ganito, Carole Franck, Abdelah Benabdelah, Leticia Gutierrez, Rosalie Symon, Olivier Loustau
Running time: 1h 57mn
Fifteen-year-old Abdelkrim, aka “Krimo,” is madly in love with his classmate Lydia. But he worries about what a declaration of love will do to his reputation.

A solution presents itself : coerce Rachid, Lydia’s partner in the play Le jeu de l’amour et du hasard (The game of love and of chance) by the famous playwright Marivaux. What Krimo does not dare to admit, Marivaux does. It becomes a real challenge for Krimo.

Director: Yann Arthus-Bertrand
Running time: 2h
In 200, 000 years, humans have disrupted the fragile balance on which Earth was living for 4 billion years. Global warming, shortage of resources, endangered species: humans are jeopardizing their own living conditions. By the end of the century, the relentless consumption will have exhausted almost all of our planet’s natural resources. But it is too late to be pessimistic: we have barely 10 years left to reverse the trend. We need to become aware of our abusive exploitation of Earth’s gifts and change our way of life.

Home is a travel notebook, showing landscapes captured from a bird’s eye view above. This film calls for a new awareness, inviting the viewer to stop for a moment in order to look at our planet and realize how we treat her treasures and her beauty.

Director: Daniel Vigne
Running time: Lorant Deutsch, Philippe Torreton, Sara Forestier, Jean-Claude Dreyfus, Élodie Navarre, Julien Courbey, Jocelyn Quivrin, Daniel Duval, Armelle , Jean-Pierre Malo, Sylviane Goudal, Romain Rondeau, Mélanie Maudran, Jean-Paul Farré, Jérémie Lippmann, Mathieu Bisson, Fabienne Babe, Nicky Naude, Virginie Desarnauts, Emmanuelle Galabru, Jean-François Perrier, Héloïse Godet
Running time: 1h 40mn
Paris wakes up on the morning of September 5, 1661 to much noise: Fouquet, the King’s Counsel, is arrested upon order of Colbert, and the young Louis XIV has just become sole ruler of France.

While other artists offer their services to the Divine Monarch, one man affirms his support for the destitute Fouquet: the poet Jean de La Fontaine. Colbert swears to make the rebel surrender, the only artist in the kingdom to put his art above the King. Hence, La Fontaine, even in his misery, stands up to his convictions. Without regret, he resists the persecution and writes the Fables, which become deadly pamphlets against a despotic and decadent regime.

Director: Maurice Pialat
Cast: Jacques Dutronc, Gérard Séty, Bernard Le Coq, Alexandra London, Elsa Zylberstein, Corinne Bourdon, Lise Lamétrie
Running time: 2h 35min
Under the care of Doctor Gachet, Vincent Van Gogh arrives in Auvers-sur-Oise in 1890. This is the most productive period of his life, as he finishes hundreds of paintings and drawings in a span of weeks. And yet it is also his most torturous, as he lives out his last days torn between love and despair.

This film is part of the Antoine Doinel Saga
Director: François Truffaut
Cast: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Claire Maurier, Albert Rémy
Running Time: 1h 33min.
This largely autobiographical film by François Truffaut tells the story of the young Antoine, an adolescent with a reputation for being a troublemaker. But is he really a troublemaker, or just a victim of harsh, uncaring adults?

Director: André Téchiné
Cast: Catherine Deneuve, Daniel Auteuil, Marthe Villalonga, Jean-Pierre Bouvier, Chiara Mastroianni, Carmen Chaplin, Anthony Prada, Bruno Todeschini, Michèle Moretti
Running time: 2h 5mn
A story of a brother and a sister, both doctors, who are forced to confront what they have made of themselves as their mother slowly loses her sanity.

Director: Patrice Leconte
Cast: Charles Berling, Fanny Ardant, Jean Rochefort, Bernard Giraudeau, Judith Godrèche, Gérard Hardy, Urbain Cancelier, Marie Pillet, Philippe Magnan, Carlo Brandt
Running time: 1h 42mn
At Versailles, in the year 1780, everything is being given away: commandments, ribbons, awards, pensions, honorific titles and administrative responsibilities. But because there are only a certain number of prizes available, a competition ensues in the court of King Louis XVI. The honest Grégoire Ponceludon de Malavoy, descended from an ancient, noble and bankrupt family, enters into this center of corruption. Will he be able to resist all of its temptations?

Director: Pierre Jolivet
Cast: Adrien Jolivet, Mhamed Arezki, Yannick Nasso, Naidra Ayadi, Vincent Grass, Pierre Jolivet, Nathalie Richard, Nicolas Marie, Maka Kotto, Abbès Zahmani, Jean-Philippe Vidal, Guilaine Londez, José Luis Roïg, Hubert Delattre, Francis Leplay, Simon-Pierre Boireau, Michèle Goddet, Joakim Latzko
Running time: 1h 30mn
Zim, 20 years old, faces a dilemma: either find a real job, or go to prison. He’s not the lazy type, and looks into the classified ads. But the only job he finds requires him to have a car and a driver’s license in 10 days! Neither of which he has. Good thing Zim has tricks, and best of all, friends: Cheb, Arthur et Safia. And to avoid going to jail, they’re ready to do anything … at least, almost!

Screening schedule:
(Note: Schedule is still subject to change)

7:30 PM Opening Night – Home

12:30 PM Les Quatre Cents Coups
3 PM Ridicule
5:30 PM Ma Saison Préférée
8 PM Van Gogh

12:30 PM 17 Fois Cécile Cassard
3 PM A Tout de Suite
5:30 PM Marie-Jo et Ses Deux Amours
8 PM La Pianiste

12:30 PM Zim & Co
3 PM Flandres
5:30 PM Ça Brule
8 PM Home

12:30 PM L’esquive
3 PM Un Secret
5:30 PM Jean de la Fontaine
8 PM Les Quatre Cents Coup

12:30 PM Ridicule
3 PM Ma Saison Préférée
5:30 PM La Pianiste
8 PM Van Gogh

12:30 PM 17 Fois Cécille Cassard
3 PM A Tout de Suite
5:30 PM Zim & Co
8 PM Marie-Jo et Ses Deux Amours

TBA (Filipino Films exhibited at Cannes)

12:30 PM Ça Brule
3 PM Ma Flandres
5:30 PM L’esquive
8 PM Home

12:30 PM Un Secret
3 PM Jean de la Fontaine
5:30 PM Les Quatre Cents Coups
8 PM Van Gogh


~ ni lunabertigo sa 4 Hunyo 2009.

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