Lights Out up against titles by Bouchareb, Kaplanoglu and Guadagnino
by Fabien Lemercier
22/09/2010 - Three 2010 Cannes titles, a winner of the 2010 Berlinale Golden Bear, an Italian feature showcased at Venice last year, a title that aroused debate at Locarno, a documentary that premiered at Toronto and a collage piece with Hitchcock as narrator are among the fascinating new releases unfurling on French screens this Wednesday. There are 12 new releases in all, no fewer than 10 of which are European productions.
The major release this week is Rachid Bouchareb’s Outside the Law [trailer], distributed by StudioCanal in over 450 theatres. The mainly French-Belgian production was unveiled in competition at Cannes earlier this year (see article) in an agitated atmosphere due to its subject matter (struggle for Algerian independence). Featuring a star-studded cast including Jamel Debbouze, Roschdy Zem and Sami Bouajila, the title is hoping to draw 3.1m filmgoers to screens, a record held by 2006 release Days of Glory [trailer, film focus], Bouchareb’s previous title starring the same actors.
Another Cannes find (see news) and critics’ favourite, the playful Lights Out [trailer] is opening through Diaphana on 91 prints. Starring a teenage cast, the debut feature directed by Fabrice Gobert screened in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes this year. Another quality French title Renaud Fély’s Pauline et François [trailer] (see news) is on release through Haut et Court on 42 prints.
European cinema enjoys pride of place this week with two critically acclaimed titles among releases. Bodega Films is distributing 33 prints of Semih Kaplanoglu’s Honey [trailer, film focus], a Golden Bear winner at the 2010 Berlinale, while Ad Vitam is releasing I am Love [trailer, film focus] by Italian helmer Luca Guadagnino on 70 screens. Unveiled at the 2009 Venice Film Festival, the title stars British actress Tilda Swinton in the lead role. Meanwhile, distributor Les Acacias are releasing 12 prints of Semih Kaplanoglu’s most recent title Milk [trailer].
Among the quirky titles are Christophe Honoré’s Man at Bath [trailer], which received a rapturous reception at Locarno (distributed through Le Pacte on eight prints), and Belgian/German/Dutch co-production Double Take [trailer] directed by Johan Grimonprez, an astonishing film based on archive footage (see news) opening through ED Distribution on five screens.
Other noteworthy releases include Otar Iosselani’s Chantrapas, selected at a special screening at Cannes (Les Films du Losange, 24 prints) and Pierre Thoretton’s documentary L’amour fou [trailer], which premiered at Toronto (Sophie Dulac Distribution, 19 prints). This highly diversified menu of releases should delight French filmgoers, although its density will no doubt sweep to the wayside more than one title of quality.
(Translated from French)