A rich French programme at the Avvantura Film Festival

The 6th festival, took place during the last week of August, prepared a rich French programme, as a result of the cooperation and a part of the big event “Rendez-vous, the Festival of France in Croatia”. 22nd – 28th August 2015.

The French film is arrived at AFF festival summer stage with significant authors’ retrospectives and also with recent titles; in addition, it entered the expert discussions which are a part of the Avvantura Matchmaking.

We remembered Jacques Demy, a big picture, sound and romance enthusiast, through important titles including the most celebrated one – The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1963), a Palme d’Or winner, impressive also because of Michel Legrand’s music, great French actors like Deneuve and others…

We watched Yves Montand and Simone Signoret in the famous Le joli mai by Chris Marker. We also recalled 1959, when the big French director Robert Bresson made Pickpocket. Furthermore, Avvantura FF presented Mahamat-Saleh Haroun’s A Screaming Man (2010) which won a reward from the jury in Cannes, Gadjo dilo by Tony Gatlif, Hadewijch by Bruno Dumont…

The festival’s spectators and guests enjoy the delicious premiere of Steak Revolution by Franck Ribiere, along which we prepared a distinctive gourmet happening in cooperation with Kraljevski Vinogradi Wineyards.

Another fresh title – Love by Gaspar Noe, a movie that caused quite a stir in Cannes because of it’s explicit sex scenes, is came to AFF as well. Babai by the director from Kosovo Visar Morina is another new title in which the co-producer is France; it won the award for best director in Karlovy Vary and was a part of the discussions about co-production.

At the festival, that from the very beginning has been focused on European co production, but also on the cooperation with France through various programmes, we organized discussions about the way that France participates in creating audiovisual contents and puts itself in the position of the partner-country, it was also a great opportunity to talk about specific experiences and outcomes of the Croatian-French cooperation and co-production.

Avvantura is the first film festival in Eastern Europe to offer a part of its programme online too, and now with the French sales company Wide, which is starting to do the distribution and the production, it is maintaining the longtime cooperation with the platform Eyeflick. It’s a platform that will show movies at AFF and in France, USA and Croatia simultaneously, so that authors, producers and distributors will be able to see them.

This was also a reason to set up a roundtable discussion about the possibilities of independent movies to achieve commercial exploitation.

After Michel Reilhac (former ARTE Cinema director), Jerome Paillard (Marche du Film – Cannes festival director) and Christophe Leparc (Quinzaine des Realisateurs art director) visited Croatia for the first time, invited by Avvantura, this year invited by Sergej Stanojkovski (Avvantura Film Festival director) Christian Jeune (head of Cannes Film Festival’s film office) visited Croatia for the first time as well. Avvantura Film Festival prepared other contents in cooperation with Rendez-Vous.

Synopsis: In Nantes, a bored young man named Roland is letting life pass him by when he has a chance meeting with a woman he knew in his teens. Lola, now a cabaret dancer, is also the devoted single mother of a young son, and she harbours the hope that his father, who deserted her during pregnancy, will return. Roland falls in love with Lola, and this gives sudden purpose to his life. But how does Lola feel about Roland?
Original title: Lola (1961)
Duration: 90 min
Language: French, English
Country: France, Italy
Producers: Georges de Beauregard, Carlo Ponti
Director: Jacques Demy
Screenplay: Jacques Demy
Cast: Anouk Aimée, Marc Michel, Jacques Harden, Alan Scott, Elina Labourdette, Margo Lion

Synopsis: In the carefree days before World War I, introverted Austrian author Jules strikes up a friendship with the exuberant Frenchman Jim. Both men fall for the impulsive and beautiful Catherine, but it is Jules who wins her hand. After the war, Jim visits Jules, Catherine and their daughter in their Austrian home and discovers not only that his feelings for Catherine are unchanged, but also that they are reciprocated.
Original title: Jules and Jim (1962)
Duration: 106 min
Language: French
Country: France
Producers: Marcel Berbert, François Truffaut
Director: François Truffaut
Screenplay: François Truffaut, Jean Gruault
Cast: Jeanne Moreau, Oskar Werner, Henri Serre

Synopsis: A young Frenchman, Stephane, is on a trek around the stark Romanian outback one winter, hoping to track down Nora Luca, a gypsy singer that his late father recorded many years ago. One night, he meets Izidor, a grizzly old Gypsie, who insists on sharing his vodka and later offers him a place to sleep in his humble hut in a small village of gypsies. The village eventually befriends him and teach him their language.
Original title: Gadjo dilo (1997)
Duration: 102 min
Language: French, Romanian, Romany
Country: Romania, France
Producer: Doru Mitran
Director: Tony Gatlif
Screenplay: Tony Gatlif, Jacques Maigre, Kits Hilaire
Cast: Romain Duris, Rona Hartner,Izidor Serban, Ovidiu Balan, Angela Serban, Adrian Simionescu

Synopsis: Aging Adam Ousmane, who was once an up-and-coming Chadian swimmer, now manages the pool at a prestigious local resort. When the new Chinese managers of the establishment decide to downsize, Adam loses his job to his own son, Abdel. Shattered by this demeaning turn of events, Adam is pressured into contributing to the Chadian war effort. With no money to speak of, the only asset he can donate is his son, who is then abducted into the Chadian army.
Original title: Un homme qui crie (2010)
Duration: 92 min
Language: French, Arabic
Country: France, Belgium, Chad
Producer: Randy Florence
Director: Mahamat Saleh Haroun
Screenplay: Mahamat Saleh Haroun
Cast: Youssouf Djaoro, Dioucounda Koma, Emile Abossolo, Hadje Fatime N’Goua, Marius Yelolo

Synopsis: Michel takes up pickpocketing on a lark and is arrested soon after. His mother dies shortly after his release, and despite the objections of his only friend, Jacques and his mother’s neighbour Jeanne, Michel teams up with a couple of petty thieves in order to improve his craft. With a police inspector keeping an eye on him, Michel also tries to get a straight job, but the temptation to steal is hard to resist.
Original title: Pickpocket (1959)
Duration: 75 min
Language: French
Country: France
Producer: Agnès Delahaie
Director: Robert Bresson
Screenplay: Robert Bresson
Cast: Martin LaSalle, Marika Green, Jean Pélégri, Dolly Scal, Pierre Leymarie, Kassagi

Synopsis: The aspirant nun Céline vel Hadewijch is invited to leave the convent where she studies and she returns to the house of her mother in Paris. Céline meets her outcast Muslim teenage friend Yassine Chikh on the streets and they hang around together. Yassine introduces Céline to his older brother and religious leader Nassir Chikh and he invites the teenage girl to participate in his religious seminars. However, Nassir is actually a terrorist and the confused Céline is the perfect tool for his cell.
Original title: Hadewijch (2009)
Duration: 105 min
Language: French
Country: France
Producers: Rachid Bouchareb, Muriel Merlin
Director: Bruno Dumont
Screenplay: Bruno Dumont
Cast: Julie Sokolowski, Karl Sarafidis, Yassine Salime, David Dewaele, Brigitte Mayeux-Clerget, Michelle Ardenne

Synopsis: In this light-hearted precursor to Croupier, Jeanne Moreau stars as Jackie, a compulsive gambler who falls in love with a bank clerk (Claude Mann) on holiday in Nice. At first, the two lovers simply use each other as good luck charms; but what happens to love when luck runs out?
Original title: La baie des anges (1963)
Duration: 90 min
Language: French
Country: France
Producers: Paul-Edmond Decharme
Director: Jacques Demy
Screenplay: Jacques Demy
Cast: Jeanne Moreau, Claude Mann, Paul Guers, Henri Nassiet, André Certes, Nicole Chollet