Films (2024)

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27th annual Festival of Films in French – February 16-25, 2024

Recovery threads through the spectra of journeys that this year’s mosaic of fiction, documentary, and animation films undertake. Recovery of memory to understand survivor’s guilt (Revoir Paris); recovery through restorative justice (Je verrai toujours vos visages), and with sheer determination and the community’s unstinting support (Houria); or with the sustaining grace of tales and cultural traditions (Dounia et la princesse d’Alep) and the embedded truths of story telling to stand up to capitalist ventures (Sitabaomba, chez les zébus francophones) as well as in the intergenerational exchanges of school children with the elderly of an under-resourced retirement home (Quand tu seras grand). Recovery of the past looking through generational lenses at Belgian and French colonial History (Colette & Justin and Chocolat); documenting the search for the long-lost first Francophone African film (Au cimetière de la pellicule) and following the recovery of a colored copy of Le Lion des Mogols, Jean Epstein’s 1924 silent film returns restored to the silver screen. The journeys are also about finding oneself in a foreign land, in Paris thanks to the art of cinematographic performance, as migrants do, traveling from Vietnam to Quebec (Ru), from Italy to Provence (Toni), Harlem to Marseille (Claude McKay) and in a Parisian banlieue where a cosmic event fractures its social order (La gravité). Where questions of identity surface for Le lycéen and for the drag queen of Solo, and shape life choices for the conductor (Les jours heureux), secrets hover, troubling family relations in Serre-moi fort, obscuring the crime perpetuated in Cette maison and waiting to be exposed in Nina et le secret du hérisson. Come behold these 20 films and consider how they conjure the frameworks of the human condition.