FRENCH FILM FESTIVAL – 20 March – 8 April – Palace

The Festival with that certain‘je ne sais quoi’ returns for 2012

From modest beginnings in 1989, the ALLIANCE FRANÇAISE FRENCH FILM FESTIVAL has emerged as one of the pre-eminent events on Australia’s cultural calendar.

This beloved celebration of French cinema, which will take place nationally from early March through to April, welcomed a record-breaking 130,000 attendees during its 2011 season and for its 23rd outing will feature over 1,300 sessions at 17 locations across the country.  Proudly presented by the Alliance Française in association with the French Embassy in Australia and the gracious support of Gold Sponsor Peugeot, the 2012 programme incorporates 9 eclectic sections dedicated to a host of universal themes, certain to entice the ‘bon vivant’ in us all!

Launching the 2012 Festival will be Declaration of War (La Guerre est déclarée) a powerful tale selected as France’s official submission for the 2012 Academy Awards.  Based on real-life events, Declaration of War, will screen courtesy of Palace Films, and is the compelling tale of a young Parisian couple whose carefree existence is suddenly shattered by an unexpected twist of fate.  A massive box office success in its native France, Declaration of War is just one of the fantastic 45 films and documentaries on offer in this year’s line-up, which will also include a closing night presentation of François Truffault’s 1980 classic, The Last Metro starring Catherine Deneuve, Gérard Depardieu and Jean Poiret.  Winner of 10 César Awards, The Last Metro embodies all that is great about French cinema and, like the Festival, has stood the test of time.

As in previous years, the 2012 line-up will showcase a dazzling array of Gallic and international talent including Anouk Aimée, Woody Allen, Niels Arestrup, Daniel Auteuil, Josiane Balasko, Jean-Marc Barr, Juliette Binoche, Michel Blanc, Dany Boon, Daniel Brühl, Isabelle Carré, Geraldine Chaplin, Jean-Pierre Darroussin, Julie Delpy, Gérard Depardieu, Jane Fonda, Miloš Forman, Cécile de France, Valeria Golino, Mélanie Laurent, Vincent Lindon, Chiara Mastroianni, Vanessa Paradis, Vincent Perez, Denis Podalydès, Benoît Poelvoorde, Charlotte Rampling, Ludivine Sagnier, Mathilde Seigner, Audrey Tautou and Roschdy Zem, who will appear in films by directors such as Rémi Bezançon, Philippe Claudel, Jennifer Devoldère, Robert Guédiguian, Christophe Honoré, Cédric Klapisch, Gilles Legrand, Philippe Lioret, Mia Hansen-Løve, Emmanuel Mouret, Michel Ocelot and many more.

2012 Festival highlights include:

A HAPPY EVENT (Un heureux événement)

Director: Rémi Bezançon  (Cast: Louise Bourgoin, Pio Marmaï & Josiane Balasko)

This stylish, contemporary drama with a comedic tone, takes an intimate look at a woman’s most joyful, painful, terrifying and life-changing experience: first-time motherhood.

ALL OUR DESIRES (Toutes nos envies)

Director:  Philippe Lioret  (Cast: Vincent Lindon & Marie Gillain)

Claire, a 30-year-old judge at Lyon magistrates’ court, becomes locked in a fight for justice, on behalf of citizens impacted by the unscrupulous practices of the financial services industry. Her plight piques the interest of disenchanted colleague Stéphane, who becomes drawn into the case. Something emerges between them: a mixture of rebellion, outrage, and above all an urgent need to live life to the fullest.

AND IF WE ALL LIVED TOGETHER (Et si on vivait tous ensemble)

Director:  Stéphane Robelin  (Cast: Guy Bedos, Daniel Brühl, Geraldine Chaplin & Jane Fonda)

Annie, Jean, Claude, and Jeanne have been friends for more than 40 years. So when the possibility of being consigned to an old-age home rears its ugly head, they rebel and decide to cohabit.

BELOVED (Les bien-aimés)

Director:  Christophe Honoré  (Cast: Catherine Deneuve, Chiara Mastroianni & Ludivine Sagnier)

Starring Catherine Deneuve and her real-life daughter Chiara Mastroianni, this sly and exquisitely romantic musical-drama spans four decades as it follows a mother and daughter’s twin misadventures in love.

POINT BLANK (A bout portant)

Director: Fred Cayavé  (Cast: Gilles Lellouche, Roschdy Zem, Gérard Lanvin & Elena Anaya)

In this classic wrong-man scenario, an innocent nurse-in-training whose career is on the rise, finds himself entangled in a web of violent chaos when his wife is kidnapped, before his very eyes, from their apartment one evening.

PRESUMED GUILTY (Présumé coupable)

Director:  Vincent Garenq  (Cast: Philippe Torreton, Noémie Lvosky & Wladimir Yordanoff)

This chillingly raw account of one of France’s most famous miscarriages of justice, tells the true story of Alain Marécaux, an average family man from a small village in the north of France who, along with 17 other people, was wrongly accused and jailed for paedophilia in 2001.

OMAR KILLED ME (Omar m’a tuer)

Director:  Roschdy Zem  (Cast: Sami Bouajila, Denis Podalydès & Maurice Bénichou)

Based on a true story, this compelling drama revists a famous murder case in which a poorly educated Moroccan immigrant was imprisoned for a crime that he may not have committed.

ROMANTICS ANONYMOUS (Les émotifs anonymes)

Director: Jean-Pierre Améris  (Cast: Benoît Poelvoorde & Isabelle Carré)

Two shy chocolate makers find the perfect recipe for love in this moving comedy.

THE ART OF LOVE (L’art d’aimer)

Director: Emmanuel Mouret  (Cast: Emmanuel Mouret, Pascale Arbillot, Ariane Ascaride, François Cluzet, Julie Depardieu & Gaspard Ulliel)

In this charming comedy, we follow the romantic and sexual misadventures of four Parisian couples.

THE CONQUEST (La conquête)

Director: Xavier Durringer  (Cast: Denis Podalydès, Florence Pernel & Bernard Le Coq)

This part fictional, part factual biopic gives an account of the rise of President Nicolas Sarkozy to power. The film opens on the night of Mr Sarkozy’s election victory, 6 May 2007.

THE WELL-DIGGER’S DAUGHTER (La fille du puisatier)

Director: Daniel Auteuil  (Cast: Daniel Auteuil, Kad Merad, & Jean-Pierre Darroussin)

At the onset of WWII, a young and beautiful country girl has a chance encounter with a seductive and handsome pilot from a bourgeois family that leads to a fleeting romance and future heartbreak.

National dates and venues for the 2012 ALLIANCE FRANÇAISE FRENCH FILM FESTIVAL are:

ADELAIDE:         20 March – 8 April Palace Nova Eastend Cinemas

For booking and session details, visit the Festival’s official website at:

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