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Sexy Thriller to open French Fest in Australia

The 17th Alliance Française French Film Festival will open with the Australian Premiere of Jérôme Salle’s sexy romantic thriller Anthony Zimmer, starring Sophie Marceau and Yvan Attal, headlining a program of 21 new features – the most in the event’s history. The Festival, touring Australia in March and April (see below for dates), supported by Peugeot, sold 45,000 tickets in 2005.

"I’m proud to say that this is unquestionably the strongest Festival selection yet" said Chantal Girondin, Artistic Director of the Festival. “To be able to present the first Australian screenings of some of the world’s most award-winning, provocative and critically acclaimed cinema is a privilege and a joy, and I’m confident the public will be as enchanted by the selection as I am.”

Other Festival selections include:
The Child (L’Enfant), winner of arguably world cinema’s most prestigious award, the Palme d’Or at Cannes 2005. The new drama from Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne observes the serious ramifications for a young father who sells his newly born child on the black market.

Regular Lovers (Les amants réguliers), the drama that won Philippe Garrel the Best Director award at Venice 2005, stars his son Louis Garrel as an idealistic poet living through the aftermath of the 1968 Paris revolution, a time of restless ambitions and chaotic excitement.

Hell (L’Enfer), the compelling new drama from Academy Award-winning director Danis Tanovic (of No Man’s Land fame) which premiered to great acclaim at the 2005 Toronto Film Festival. Starring Emmanuelle Beart and Carole Bouquet, the film chronicles the lives of three sisters, bound forever by an act of violence that they witnessed in their childhood. Hell (L’Enfer) was written by Krzysztof Piesiewicz, who developed the film as part of a trilogy with the late Krzysztof Kieslowski.

The program also includes three standouts from Cannes last year: the searing coming-of-age drama Little Jerusalem (La Petite Jerusalem); the provocative partner-swapping tale To Paint Or Make Love (Peindre ou faire l’amour) which features French superstars Daniel Auteuil & Sabine Azéma; and Time To Leave (Le temps qui reste) the tremendously humane new film from François Ozon (Swimming Pool) starrring Jeanne Moreau in a rare screen appearance. Also screening will be the visually inventive documentary Dogora from Patrice Leconte (Ridicule); and Just Friends (Je préfère qu’on reste amis), the hilarious odd-couple comedy with Gérard Depardieu and Jean-Paul Rouve.

Previously announced highlights include: Bertrand Blier’s How Much Do You Love Me? (Combien tu m’aimes?), starring Monica Bellucci and Gérard Depardieu, Dominik Moll’s Lemming with Laurent Lucas, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Charlotte Rampling; and Anne Fontaine’s absorbing thriller In His Hands (Entre ses Mains) starring Isabelle Carré, plus the erotically charged dramas Cold Showers (Douches Froides) and The Ring Finger (L’Annulaire).
Andrew L. Urban
www.urbancinefile.com

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