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K-State Today

February 19, 2016



Free French films hosted by La Societe Francaise

By Mary Hellmer

K-State's La Société Française is hosting the Tournées Film Festival Feb. 19 to March 6 in the K-State Student Union's Little Theater. We will be showing six French and Francophone with English subtitles. All of the films are free and open to the public.

Films include: 

•"The Rabbi's Cat" will show at 5 p.m. Friday, Feb. 19. Based on the best-selling graphic novel by Joann Sfar, "The Rabbi's Cat" tells the story of a rabbi and his talking cat — a sharp-tongued feline philosopher brimming with scathing humor and a less than pure love for the rabbi's voluptuous teenage daughter.

•"Girlhood" will show at 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 20. Céline Sciamma's third feature focuses on Marieme, Karidja Touré, a 16-year-old who assumes responsibility for her two younger sisters while their mother works the night shift; the teenager also must frequently absorb the wrath of her tyrannical slightly older brother.

•"Timbuktu" will show at 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 21. In his magnificent fourth feature film, Abderrahmane Sissako demonstrates his remarkable ability to thoroughly condemn religious fanaticism and intolerance with subtlety and restraint. "Timbuktu" concerns the jihadist siege of the Malian city of the title in 2012. A ragtag band of Islamic fundamentalists, hailing from France, Saudi Arabia and Libya, among other nations, announce their increasingly absurd list of prohibitions — no music, no sports, no socializing — via megaphone to Timbuktu's denizens, several of whom refuse to follow these strictures, no matter the consequence.

•"Love at First Fight" will show at 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 28. Thomas Cailley's thoroughly delightful first film upends the cliché of the "meet cute." Set during the summer in a coastal town in southwest France, "Love at First Fight" follows the unlikely attraction that develops between Arnaud, Kévin Azaïs, a mild-mannered woodworker and carpenter, and Madeleine, Adèle Haenel, a doomsday-obsessed graduate student preparing for an elite army unit. As in the best comedies about mismatched couples, much of the enormous appeal of "Love at First Fight" is rooted in the terrific chemistry between Azaïs and Haenel, two of France's brightest young talents.

•"The Nun" will show at 5 p.m. Saturday, March 5. In Guillaume Nicloux's adaptation of Denis Diderot's late-eighteenth-century anticlerical novel, a devout 16-year-old is forced by her parents to enter a convent. Although her time in the nunnery was originally supposed to last just a few months, Suzanne soon finds herself imprisoned in the abbey, subject to the humiliations of the cruel Mother Superior Christine, Louise Bourgoin, and the selfishness of her actual mother — who makes the startling announcement to her daughter that she is, in fact, an illegitimate child and must therefore expiate the family's sins by staying in the convent indefinitely.

•"Daybreak" will show at 5 p.m. Sunday, March 6. This paragon of "poetic realist" cinema from 1939 was the fourth collaboration between director Marcel Carné and screenwriter Jacques Prévert, who enjoyed one of the most illustrious partnerships in movie history. They are the team responsible for 1945's Children of Paradise, perhaps the most beloved French film of all time. Suffused with despair, "Daybreak," released just a few months before France and the U.K. declared war on Germany, uncannily anticipates the unrelenting real-life misery to come. 

The K-State Tournées film festival was made possible with the support of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the U.S., the Centre National de la Cinématographie et de l'Image Animée and the Franco-American Cultural Fund and the Florence Gould Foundation, Campus France USA, highbrow entertainment and the Franco-American Cultural Fund.