We’ve seen a lot of great films and budding filmmakers break out of charming Critics’ Week artistic director Charles Tesson’s annual slate of 10 films, seven in competition and three out-of-competition. Last year, the sidebar world-premiered the 2015 indie horror hit sensation “It Follows,” which is now breaking US box office precedent as a little indie that could, and did.
This year, Critics’ Week opens with Elie Wajeman’s fin de siècle period drama “The Anarchists,” led by hot young international stars Adele Exarchopoulos and Tahar Rahim. The lineup, typical, tips toward French film, including actor Louis Garrel’s feature debut “Les Deux Amis” — which from the title already sounds alluringly like a film in his father Philippe Garrel’s footsteps. Garrel cowrote the film with Christophe Honoré, who cast Garrel in many of his whimsical films including “Love Songs,” “Dans Paris” and 2011 Critics’ Week selection “Beloved.” (“Les Deux Amis” also stars Garrel’s partner Golshifteh Farahani, who is lovely in Asghar Farhadi’s “About Elly,” now in US theaters.)
Mathieu Vadepied’s first film “La Vie en Grand” will close out Critics’ Week, which runs May 14 to 22. Vadepied worked as DP on “The Intouchables” and on “Read My Lips” by Jacques Audiard, another art-household name that broke out of Critics’ Week.
Trey Edward Shults’ searing addiction drama “Krisha” also hits la Semaine after winning the Audience and Grand Jury awards at SXSW. This claustrophobic domestic horror movie in “Woman Under the Influence” vein is still seeking US distribution, and will play in competition.
Here’s the full lineup. As previously announced, Ronit Elkabetz will serve as jury president. Prizes include the Grand Prix and the France 4 Visionary Award. First features in Critics’ Week, and in other sidebars, collectively run for the festival’s esteemed Camera d’Or.
“The Anarchists,” Elie Wajeman (opening film)
“La Vie en Grand,” Mathieu Vadepied (closing film)
“Les Deux Amis,” dir: Louis Garrel (special screening)
“Dégraded,” dir: Arab and Tarzan Abunasser
“Krisha,” dir: Trey Edward Shults
“Mediterranea,” dir: Jonas Carpignano
“Ni le ciel, ni la terre,” dir: Clement Cogitore
“Paulina,” dir: Pauline Santiago Mitre
“Sleeping Giant,” dir: Andrew Cividino
“La tierra y la sombra,” dir: Augusto Cesar Acevedo
Ryan Lattanzio is the staff writer for TOH at Indiewire. Follow him on Twitter.