The 14th edition of Rendez-Vous with French Cinema, The Film Society of Lincoln Center and Unifrance’s annual showcase of contemporary French film, will take place at The Film Society and the IFC Center from March 5-15, 2009. Eighteen titles will premiere in the series, including new work from Claude Chabrol, Claire Denis, Costa-Gavras, Benoit Jacquot, Agnes Varda, and the world premiere of Andre Techine’s “The Girl on the Train.”
“Rendez-Vous’s goal has been to provide as broad a panorama as possible of contemporary French cinema,” said Richard Pena, program director at The Film Society, in a statement. “This year, the aesthetic and stylistic spread of the program is more impressive than ever.”
The series will open with the U.S. premiere of Christophe Barratier’s “Paris 36,” starring comedian Gerard Jugnot as a theater manager leading a movement to bring his music hall back into prominence. The screening will also mark The Film Society’s return to the newly renovated Alice Tully Hall, home of the New York Film Festival, Thursday, March 5.
As the series continues, Rendez-Vous director Agnes Varda will present “The Beaches of Agnes,” Costa-Gavra’s “Eden Is West,” and Samuel Collardey’s directorial debut “The Apprentice,” all of which continue the style of New York Film Festival Opening Night selection “The Class” by mixing documentary and fiction filmmaking.
Following more traditional methods are Pierre Schoeller’s debut “Versailles” which stars the late Guillaume Depardieu Andre Techine’s “The Girl on the Train,” receiving its world premiere in the series, and Jean-Francois Richet’s two-part crime story “Mesrine,” already a winner of multiple honors at this year’s Lumiere Awards and Globes de Cristal.
Also announced were Claude Chabrol’s latest thriller “Bellamy,” Daniele Thompson’s “Change of Plans,” Ilan Duran Cohen’s “The Joy of Singing,” Benoit Jacquot’s “Villa Amalia,” starring Isabelle Huppert and based on Pascal Quignard’s Goncourt Prize-winning novel, and first-time director Martin Provost’s biopic “Seraphine,” which received nine Cesar nominations.
Other Cesar honored titles in the series include “Mesrine,” “Versailles,” “Paris 36,” “The Girl from Monaco,” “With a Little Help from Myself,” and “The Beaches of Agnes.”
Claude Chabrol, whose “Bellamy” will receive its North American premiere during Rendez-Vous, will be honored with the prestigious Berlinale Camera during this year’s Berlin International Film Festival.
Finally, new this year to Rendez-Vous is a program of prizewinning short films by emerging filmmakers will provide “an exclusive introduction to the next generation of French cinema,” says Pena in a statement. The seven titles in “Tout Court: New French Shorts” will screen together, Friday, March 13, at 4:00 p.m. and Sunday, March 15, at 3:15 p.m.
For a full list of films and screening times, visit this website.