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Film

Reel Forecast: Vues d'Afrique Debuts, violence on film, & new Quebecois offerings

Posted by Andrés / April 15, 2010

Too many film selections for FRIDAY APR 16 to THURSDAY APR 22

Violence is projected, dissected and contemplated this week with three screenings in particular. The first of these is at the Goethe Institut on Friday with The Baader Meinhof Complex. One of those movies whose trailer begs for the quote "high-octane", it is a non-partisan look at the left wing terrorism in post WW2 Germany enacted by the Red Army Faction in their opposition to what they believed to be a fascist state. German films of late (see: Downfall, The Lives of Others) have done an excellent job at revisiting particularly brutal periods of their history with an eye for fact without sacrificing the audience's need to be entertained. (More Info)

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, one of the better movies of 2007, is a revisionist look at the classic figure of bandit Jesse James. In particular, the film aims to tear down his cult of celebrity and expose the strange relationship Americans have in their love of a violent man. The film plays Saturday at the Cinémathèque québécoise. (More Info) Théâtre Outremont screens Le ruban blanc on Monday. I reviewed this one back in Fall, and it has since been considered one of the finest movies of 2009. While the film does well to stray from showing violence - the sentiment is simmering beneath this quiet town in pre-war Germany. (More Info)

Harold did a fine job previewing some new Québécois films earlier this week, so this is just a reminder that Rafaël Ouellet's New Denmark premieres this week at Cinéma Parallèle. You can also still catch Robert Morin's Journal d'un coopérant at the same theatre. Both directors have become names synonymous with the newly dubbed Québec New Wave. The former's 2009 film, Derrière moi, was a fine addition to the currently popular Slow Cinema movement, while the latter deals primarily in ecstatic-truth style documentaries that are fiction/non-fiction amalgams. (More Info)

The Body is an Offering starts its run at Cinema du Parc. This documentary by Québécoise filmmaker Renée Claude Riendeau made splash a at this year's FIFA, and was highly regarded by MP writer Jasia. The doc is a unique look at how photogaphers deal with the human body as subject. (More Info) From the shocking to the serene, this week's homegrown films are all highly recommended.

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The 26th edition of the Vues d'Afrique Festival starts tonight with the usual assortment of full-length and short fiction and non-fiction films. As with any film festival, the best choices are not always clear, but you can do worse than taking a chance on what has proven to always been a socially stimulating and aware festival. Some of the films are from African filmmakers and others are from foreigners looking in on the continent.

Harragas is a fiction film about the nautical journey of illegal immigrants heading to Spanish shores. Comme un homme sur terre is a documentary about African immigrants living in Rome and their want to feel like equal citizens. Films about the struggles of everyday life are common, such as Afrique économie en sursit. One of the most fascinating may be the closing film, which is in fact a collection of ten shorts by a variety of African filmmakers. I recommend to go through the programming and pick something that interests you. (More Info)

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As if all the above weren't enough, the Cinémathèque québécoise is treating us with two 35mm prints of film classics for opposite-spectrum tastes. If you were to watch just one Japanese animated film, it would have to be Katsuhiro Otomo's 80s classic Akira. Filled with what makes anime so unique in the animated world (adult-level violence, hard-to-figure-out philosophical ponderings, giant blob-like creatures), Akira was so unique upon its release it thrusted itself into film history and remains top of its class. For something a little more docile, legendary filmmaker Ingmar Bergman's Sonate d'automne screen on Sunday. Known for his true-to-life emotional dramas, this one is about a woman whose reunion with her two daughters culminates in a baring of emotional pressures. (More Info)

And you thought Date Night was your only choice this week. Advertise yourself as a more complex and contemplative personality with any of the above choices.

Images courtesy respective film distributors.

Discussion

8 Comments

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Alex / February 4, 2015 at 07:15 am
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