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France

(Il était une forêt)
Nonfiction Features

Luc Jacquet (March of the Penguins) and pioneering botanist and ecologist Francis Hallé fly us to the very top of the Amazon rainforest canopy and chronicle seven centuries in the life of this "green lung" of the world. A glorious celebration of trees and a call to arms for the protection of this wondrous tropical ecosystem.

Animation, Environment, Food, Farm & Garden, Under 18 May Attend, Science & Technology
Spotlight on France

“Films that truly surprise are the rarest of the rare… Marianne Pistone and Gilles Deroo have crafted a prose poem on the randomness of life itself, at first focusing on a young man working as a prep chef and then, quite suddenly, introducing a freak event that changes the course of the picture and steers it down unexpected paths…"—Variety Winner, Best First Film, Special Jury Prize, Filmmakers of the Present, Locarno 2013.

Animals, Drama
(La vie d'Adèle--Chapitres 1 & 2)
Spotlight on France

A tour de force of unbridled intimacy and graphic sexuality, Abdellatif Kechiche’s acclaimed drama features superb performances from Léa Seydoux and Adèle Exarchopoulos as young women finding their love for each other. "A shattering masterpiece about sexual awakening, heartbreak and self-discovery…"—Atlantic. Winner, Palme d’Or (for film and lead actors), Cannes 2013.

Literary (inc. Adaptations), Queer Interest, Romance, Sex & Eroticism
(Jeune & jolie)
Spotlight on France

François Ozon’s controversial drama follows 17-year-old Isabelle (Marine Vacth), from a comfortable Parisian background, who chooses to become a high-class prostitute. Ozon’s refusal to judge coupled with Vacth’s amazing performance make for a disturbing and deeply affecting work.

Drama, Sex & Eroticism

Canada, France

International Shorts

A small-time criminal kidnaps his estranged daughter and takes off on a road trip with ideas of starting a new life in Canada. Staring Dominic Fumusa (Kevin in Nurse Jackie).

Crime, Drama

France, Germany

(Vous n'avez encore rien vu)
Spotlight on France

The great Alain Resnais brings together a fantastic cast—Piccoli, Azéma, Arditi, Amalric and others—for a roundelay of theatre and passion in a country house. "Digital technology meets lyrical drama… in this puckishly daring, intricately original work."—New Yorker. Dedicated to the memory of film critic, professor and VIFF friend Mark Harris.

Fine Arts & Theatre, Filmmaking

USA, Haiti, France, Belgium

(Assistance mortelle)
Nonfiction Features

Raoul Peck gets to the heart of the problem in this cogent and powerful look at why post-earthquake Haiti is worse off than ever. "Shines a damning light on the damage done by international aid agencies whose well-meaning but ignorant assumptions turned a nightmare into an unsolvable tragedy."—Variety

Human Rights, Power Politics, Revolution & Empowerment

France, Belgium, Morocco

(Le sac de farine)
Cinema of Our Time

Just as bright young Sarah is learning to negotiate life in a Belgian Catholic orphanage she is wisked away to a remote Moroccan village. Director Kadija Leclere draws from her own abduction experiences to craft a remarkably immersive film. "Piercingly bittersweet… Beautifully low-key… [A] valiant first feature…"—Hollywood Reporter

Immigration, Islamic World, Religion, Spirituality & Myth, Women Directors

Japan, France, Hong Kong

(Feng ai)
Dragons & Tigers

Wang Bing is one of the greatest documentary filmmakers working today: his new film explores the patients/inmates of a run down mental institution somewhere in China. Wang’s astonishingly observant camera reveals these patients’ inner beings, their loves and their sometime madness with absolute respect and limitless compassion.

Disabilities, Human Rights

Italy, France

(Bella addormentata)
Cinema of Our Time

Isabelle Huppert and Toni Servillo (Il Divo) are superb in Italian master Marco Bellocchio’s caustic political critique and keenly observed social drama centring on the hot-button issue of euthanasia. A powerful and supremely intelligent work, showing Bellocchio at the peak of his powers.

Disabilities, Drama, Human Rights, Power Politics, Religion, Spirituality & Myth

Iran, France

(Le passé)
Special Presentations

Iran’s Asghar Farhadi (A Separation), now working in France, directs the brilliant Bérénice Bejo (The Artist), Tahar Rahim (A Prophet, Grand Central) and Ali Mosaffa in a tense domestic relationship triangle. "An intricate and often brilliant drama, with restrained and intelligent performances… Farhadi’s filmmaking is compelling."—Guardian. Winner, Best Actress, Cannes 2013.

Drama, Family Relations, Mystery

Spain, France, Romania

(Historia de la meva mort)
Cinema of Our Time

Albert Serra’s (Honor de Cavelleria) dreamy period piece finds an aging Giacomo Casanova (Vicenç Altaió) coming face to face with the new age, as embodied in the form of Dracula… “Serra’s most accessible work… Casanova is a vivid character rich with metaphor… [Serra] turns the characters into symbols of history in flux.”—Indiewire. Winner, Golden Leopard, Locarno 2013.

Experimental & Avant Garde, Biography, Fantasy, Literary (inc. Adaptations), Queer Interest

Chad, France

Cinema of Our Time

Mahamat-Saleh Haroun (A Screaming Man) follows the exploits of a disabled young man (Souleymane Démé) who still manages to wow them on the dance floor. When he gets involved with gangsters, however, the music stops… "A calm, lucid drama… the director’s compassion shines out, and so does the charisma of Souleymane Démé."—Guardian

Crime, Disabilities, Drama, Music & Dance

Chile, France

(El verano de los peces voladores)
Cinema of Our Time

"An enticing first fiction feature by accomplished Chilean documentarian Marcela Said. Set in what should be a vacation paradise, it charts the coming to consciousness of a teenage girl, who, in a single summer, has her first love affair and discovers another world—that of the Mapuche Indians, who are being displaced from their land by men like her wealthy, brutish, arrogant father…"—Film Comment

Environment, Human Rights, Women Directors

France, Portugal

(Gebo et l'ombre)
Cinema of Our Time

Michael Lonsdale and Claudia Cardinale are superb in Manoel de Oliveira’s gorgeous period piece about the return of a prodigal son bent on destroying his family. "An exquisite yet anguished spectacle, a grand piece of cinematic chamber music for a cast of mighty soloists…"—New Yorker

Fine Arts & Theatre, Family Relations, Mystery

India, France, Germany

(Dabba)
Cinema of Our Time

When a lunchbox painstakingly prepared and intended for Ila’s (Nimrat Kaur) husband is mistakenly delivered to Saajan (the wonderful Irrfan Khan, Life of Pi), the under-appreciated Mumbai housewife and lonely accountant strike up an intimate correspondence, sharing their inner thoughts and life stories. Ritesh Batra’s soulful debut is "a wistful, elegant love story."—Screen

Drama

France, Estonia

Arts and Letters

Art-house titans (and mutual admirers) Ben Rivers and Ben Russell conspire on this uncompromising, three-part sensory experience that commences in a bucolic Estonian commune and culminates with a black metal concert. "[A] tapestry of beautifully rendered concepts [that’s] impressively committed to its poetic design… Rivers and Russell have certainly cast a spell that sticks."—Indiewire

Fine Arts & Theatre, Experimental & Avant Garde, Music & Dance

France, Turkey, Germany

Cinema of Our Time

Araf means purgatory and that’s where the longings of the spirit and body will take young Zehra. With stunningly directed scenes using seductive music and striking winter vistas, Yeşim Ustaoğlu’s potently soulful drama "creates resonant images that blend countryside, village and landscape into rich visual emotions…"—Hollywood Reporter. Winner, Best Film, Abu Dhabi 2012.

Drama, Romance

Peru, France, Mexico

Cinema of Our Time

Was it a stray bullet or botched assassination attempt that left Constantino mute? Fernando Bacilio delivers a towering performance as an obsessed magistrate exceeding the bounds of his powers to get answers. Diego and Daniel Vega’s deadpan crime procedural conjures Beckett with its distinct and compelling mix of atmosphere and plot. Winner, Best Actor, Locarno 2013.

Comedy, Disabilities, Drama

UK, France, Portugal

Special Presentations

"The [Cannes] festival’s most brilliant movie was Jean-Luc Godard’s The Three Disasters… 3D as you have never seen it before… A masterpiece, the first movie of the cinematic future.”—Film Comment. Peter Greenaway’s and Edgar Pêra’s parts of this trilogy are pretty eye-popping too! Special 3D Presentations.

3D, Fine Arts & Theatre, Experimental & Avant Garde, Filmmaking

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