Italian films to be shown in Cannes after Palme d’Or snub

After disappointment at being left out of the main competition at Cannes next month, three Italian films were included in the Director's Fortnight contest held alongside the prestigious cinema showcase.

Italian films to be shown in Cannes after Palme d’Or snub
Italian film director Marco Bellochio's "Fai Bei Sogni" will open the Director's Fortnight. Photo: Tiziana Fabi/AFP

Italian cinema great Marco Bellochio, 76, saw his latest film “Fai Bei Sogni” (Sweet Dreams) chosen to open the increasingly prized sidebar competition, after being snubbed in the Palme d'Or selection.

The film about a boy coping with the death of his mother is his first to be shown at Cannes since “Vincere” (To Win) was shown in the main competition in 2009.

The other two Italian films are “Fiore” by Claudio Giovannesi, set in a juvenile detention centre, and “La Pazza Gioia” (Like Crazy) – about two patients who escape a mental institution.

They are among 18 feature films chosen for the Director's Fortnight, which often offers up some of the most raved about films during Cannes.

“This year there is a mixture of the veterans, Jodorowsky, Bellochio, and the youth,” said Director's Fortnight artistic director Edouard Waintrop.

Chilean director Alejandro Jodorowsky, 87, will present his autobiographical feature “Poesia sin Fin” (Endless Poetry).

Another film initially slated to be included in the main competition that ended up in the Director's Fortnight is “L'Economie du Couple”, a tale of a divorced couple who continue to live under the same roof for economic reasons, by Belgian director Joachim Lafosse.

Chilean director Pablo Larrain's “Neruda”, starring Gael Garcia Bernal as an inspector hunting for poet Pablo Neruda, who became a wanted man in Chile in the late '40s for his communist sympathies, also got the nod.

Indian director Anurag Kashyap – who directed the acclaimed psychological thriller “Ugly”, shown at Cannes in 2013 – returns to the genre with “Psycho Raman” about a serial killer terrorising Mumbai in the '60s.

American director Laura Poitras, who won an Oscar for “Citizenfour” about fugitive US intelligence whistleblower Edward Snowden, will be showing her latest documentary “Risk” focusing on Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.

The independent competition will end with “Dog Eat Dog” by Paul Schrader, director of the 1980 crime drama American Gigolo and author of numerous screenplays for Martin Scorsese films, including “Taxi Driver”.

Starring Nicolas Cage and Willem Dafoe, “Dog Eat Dog” follows three ex-cons trying to adapt to life outside bars.

The traditional animated film entry will this year be Claude Barras' debut “Ma Vie de Courgette” (My Life as a Courgette) about a nine-year-old boy making it in a foster home after his mother's sudden death.

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French films with English subtitles to watch in November

As days get shorter and temperatures drop, November is a great month to enjoy a warm and comforting moment at the cinema. Here’s a round up of the French movies with English subtitles to see in Paris this month.

Cinema in France
Photo: Loic Venance/AFP

The cinema group Lost in Frenchlation runs regular screenings of French films in the capital, with English subtitles to help non-native speakers follow the action. The club kicks off every screening with drinks at the cinema’s bar one hour before the movie, so it’s also a fun way to meet people if you’re new to Paris.

These are the events they have coming up in November.

Friday, November 5th

Boîte Noire – What happened on board the Dubai-Paris flight before it crashed in the Alps? In this thriller Matthieu, a young and talented black box analyst played by Pierre Niney (star of Yves Saint-Laurent among other movies) is determined to solve the reason behind this deadly crash, no matter the costs. 

The screening will take place at the Club de l’étoile cinema at 8pm. But you can arrive early for drinks at the bar from 7pm. 

Tickets are €10 full price, €8 for students and all other concessions, and can be reserved here.

Sunday, November 14th

Tralala – In the mood for music? This new delightful French musical brings you into the life of Tralala (played by Mathieu Amalric), a 48 years old, homeless and worn-out street singer, who one day gets mistaken for someone else. Tralala sees an opportunity to get a better life by taking on a new personality. He now has a brother, nephews, ex-girlfriends, and maybe even a daughter. But where is the lie? Where is the truth? And who is he, deep down?

The night will start with drinks from 6pm followed by the screening at 7pm at the Luminor Hôtel de Ville cinema. There is also a two-hour cinema-themed walk where you’ll be taken on a “musicals movie tour” in the heart of Paris, which begins at 4pm.

Tickets cost €10, or €8 for students and concessions, and can be found here. Tickets for the walking tour cost €20 and must be reserved online here.

Thursday, November 18th

Illusions Perdues – Based on the great novel series by Honoré de Balzac between 1837 and 1843, this historical drama captures the writer Lucien’s life and dilemmas who dreams about a great career of writing and moves to the city to get a job at a newspaper. As a young poet entering the field of journalism, he is constantly challenged by his desire to write dramatic and eye-catching stories for the press. But are they all true?

The evening will kick off with drinks at L’Entrepôt cinema bar at 7pm, followed by the movie screening at 8pm. Tickets are available online here, and cost €8.50 full price; €7 for students and all other concessions.

Sunday, November 21st

Eiffel – Having just finished working on the Statue of Liberty, Gustave Eiffel (played by Romain Duris) is tasked with creating a spectacular monument for the 1889 Universal Exposition in Paris. It’s ultimately his love story with Adrienne Bourgès (Emma Mackey) that will inspire him to come up with the idea for the Eiffel Tower.

After a first screening last month, Lost in Frenchlation is organising a new one at the Luminor Hôtel de Ville cinema, with pre-screening drinks at the cinema bar. 

Tickets cost €10, or €8 for students and concessions, and can be found here

Thursday, November 25th

Les Héroïques – Michel is a former junkie and overgrown child who only dreams of motorbikes and of hanging out with his 17-year-old son Léo and his friends. But at 50 years old, he now has to handle the baby he just had with his ex, and try not to make the same mistakes he has done in the past. 

The film will be followed by a Q&A with the director Maxime Roy who will discuss his very first feature. 

Tickets cost €10, or €8 for students and concessions, and can be found here.

Full details of Lost in Frenchlation’s events can be found on their website or Facebook page. In France, a health pass is required in order to go to the cinema.