By Laura Weyman, Photo Editor
Thanks to the French embassy and the Tournée Festival, the French Club is hosting their 10th annual Francophone Film Festival Thursday Feb. 22 and Friday Feb. 23. Tournée’s film festival has partnered with over 500 universities since 1995 to give American students a taste of culturally diverse cinema through various genres such as, fiction, documentaries and animated films. The movies come from various francophone countries, and, according to director for the Office of International Programs and Services Dr. Dorothée Mertz-Weigel, the intention behind this festival is “to expose the public to the diversity of francophone countries through motion pictures.” As she stated, “We wanted to make sure that people knew French was spoken outside of France, and that French speakers are on all five continents”.
This event is organized by professors across the nation, and as the executive director of the Franco-American Cultural Fund, Alejandra Norambuena Skira stated, “The most ingenious aspect of the program is that cinema education is effectively accomplished through film festivals. We extend a big thank you to the professors who put on these festivals that inspire us, through exploring another culture, to become more tolerant, more curious, and more available to others.”
This is a great opportunity for French students to further their proficiency in the language and it also offers an opportunity for non-French students to widen their cultural lens.
What can you expect from this year’s showing? The lineup is made up of two animated films, one documentary and one fiction film. All movies will be shown at the Ogeechee Theatre in French with English subtitles and are free admission and open to the public.
Thursday, February 22nd at 1pm (70 minutes)
“Ma Vie de Courgette”- The title, translating to, “My Life as a Zucchini,” is a Swiss-French, adult-comedy drama. This dark comedic animation tells the story of Icare, also known as Courgette, who is adjusting to his new orphan life due to an unfortunate accident that resulted in his mother’s death. He eventually meets a few characters along the way who help him through his difficult journey, while he is living in foster care. This 2016 motion picture won the Oscar for best animated feature.
Thursday, February 22nd at 6pm (90 minutes)
“Frontières” or “Borders” is a fictional film about four women from different regions who form a friendship on a bus journeying across West Africa. Together, they face the universal challenge of being independent women in this mundane setting.
Friday, February 23rd at 10am (85 minutes)
“Un monstre à Paris” or “A Monster in Paris” is a 3D animated musical fantasy produced by Luc Besson, set in 1910 Paris. The main characters, Raoul and Emile, accidentally unleash a monster from a scientist’s garden. An investigation is launched on the whereabouts of the creature.
Friday, February 23rd at 6pm (85 minutes)
“The Banane” or “The Big Banana” is a documentary film that touches on the inhumane conditions of the banana farming industry. This documentary was filmed in Cameroon, and it was banned there after its release in 2011. This film uncovers the devastating truth of poverty, pollution, and sickness from pesticides, which all affect the farmers as well as the communities surrounding the plantations.
Friday, February 23rd at 8pm (75 minutes)
The last showing ends with “Louise en Hiver” or “Louise by the Shore”, a French animated drama. An old lady finds herself stranded on a resort and is forced to face nature’s ferocity. She endures her choice’s consequences with the heavy storms and tides. This movie has been nominated for Best Animated Feature Film at the European Film Awards.