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A French Wave Hits the Santa Barbara International Film Festival


Final Cut

SBIFF's Riviera Theatre
2044 Alameda Padre Serra
Santa Barbara, US 93103

July 14-20, 2023


The Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s (SBIFF) French Wave is back with 11 new French films playing the historic Riviera Theatre July 14 – 20, 2023.

Presented by the El Encanto Hotel, the historic Riviera Theatre is screening 11 French films as part of the French Wave Film Festival July 14-20.

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s (SBIFF’s) French Wave is back! 11 new French films will play from July 14 – 20. The festival opens with a reception at the El Encanto Hotel, followed by screenings at SBIFF’s Riviera Theatre. Make sure to check out the hotel’s specially curated menu of quintessentially French dishes in between screenings. Don’t miss this wonderful selection of acclaimed French films in this historic venue! Tickets and special passes are available for purchase on the festival’s website.  

Films this year include:

Diary of a Fleeting Affair
Written and Directed by Emmanuel Mouret
Starring Sandrine Kiberlain, Vincent Macaigne, Georgia Scalliet
1h 40m

A single mother and a married man enter into an affair with the understanding that their relationship is purely sexual. Though they agree the relationship has no future, they find themselves increasingly drawn into each other’s company.

Nominee – Best Actor – César Awards
Official Selection – Cannes Film Festival

Sunday 7/16 @ 12:00 PM
Wednesday 7/19 @ 2:30 PM

Final Cut
Written and Directed by Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist)
Starring Romain Duris, Bérénice Bejo
1h 50m

The opening night selection of last year’s Cannes Film Festival was this wacky horror comedy, a remake of Shin’ichirô Ueda’s cult hit One Cut of the Dead. A small film crew attempts to shoot a zombie horror movie on a shoestring budget, but they encounter more than just technical difficulties when real zombies suddenly begin attacking them.

Nominee – Best Adapted Screenplay and  Best Original Score – César Awards
Official Selection – Cannes Film Festival

Monday 7/17 @ 2:30 PM
Wednesday 7/19 @ 5:00 PM

The Innocent
Directed by Louis Garrel
Written by Louis Garrel, Tanguy Viel, Naïla Guiguet
Starring Roschdy Zem, Anouk Grinberg, Noémie Merlant, Louis Garrel
1h 39m

Part crime thriller, part family farce, Louis Garrel’s The Innocent shows with panache and pathos the dangerous lengths two men go, and the outlandish lies they tell, for the women they love. When a prison drama teacher marries one of the inmates, her son begins to wonder if the ex-con is still a criminal, or if he has actually been rehabilitated.

Winner – Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actress – César Awards
Nominee – Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Original Score, Best Sound, Best Editing, and Best Costumes – César Awards

Friday 7/14 @ 7:30 PM
Tuesday 7/18 @ 5:00 PM

More than Ever
Directed by Emily Atef
Written by Emily Atef, Lars Hubrich
Starring Vicky Krieps, Gaspard Ulliel, Bjørn Floberg
2h 2m

Hélène and Mathieu have been happy together for many years. The bond between them is deep. Faced with an existential decision, Hélène travels alone to Norway to seek peace, an act that will test the strength of their love.

Official Selection – Cannes Film Festival

Saturday 7/15 @ 5:00 PM
Monday 7/17 @ 7:30 PM

Mother and Son
Written and Directed by Leonor Serraille
Starring Annabelle Lengronne, Stéphane Bak, Ahmed Sylla, Kenzo Sambin
1h 57m

In the late 1980s, Rose moves to the Paris suburbs with her two young sons, Ernest and Jean. Spanning 20 years from their arrival in France, Leonor Serraille’s follow-up to her Camera d’Or-winner Jeune Femme (Cannes 2017 Un Certain Regard) is the moving chronicle of the construction and deconstruction of a family.

Official Selection – Cannes Film Festival

Sunday 7/16 @ 2:30 PM
Tuesday 7/18 @ 7:30 PM

The Night of the 12th
Directed by Dominik Moll
Written by Gilles Marchand, Dominik Moll
Starring Bastien Bouillon, Bouli Lanners, Anouk Grinberg, Mouna Soualem, Pauline Serieys
1h 55m

Sooner or later, every police investigator comes across a case that remains unsolved and that haunts him. For Yohan, Clara’s murder proves to be that case. What starts as a thorough investigation into the victim’s life soon turns into a nagging obsession. One interrogation follows another, there is no shortage of suspects, and Yohan has more and more doubts. Only one thing is sure, the crime occurred on the night of the 12th.

Winner – Best Film, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Male Newcomer, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Sound – César Awards
Nominee – Best Cinematography, Best Editing, Best Original Score, Best Set Design – César Awards
Official Selection – Cannes Film Festival

Saturday 7/15 @ 2:30 PM
Thursday 7/20 @ 7:30 PM

Written and Directed by Albert Serra
Starring Benoît Magimel, Sergi López, Pahoa Mahagafanau, Cécile Guilbert, Matahi Pambrun
2h 42m

On the French Polynesian island of Tahiti, the high commissioner of the Republic and French government must investigate a persistent rumor: the sighting of a submarine whose ghostly presence could herald the return of French nuclear testing.

Winner – Best Actor, and Best Cinematography – César Awards
Nominee – Best Film, Best Director, Best Sound, Best Original Score, Best Costumes, Best Set Design, and Best Visual Effects –  César Awards
Official Selection – Cannes Film Festival

Sunday 7/16 @ 7:30 PM
Thursday 7/20 @ 2:00 PM

The Passengers of the Night
Directed by Mikhaël Hers
Written by Mikhaël Hers, Maud Ameline, Mariette Désert
Starring Charlotte Gainsbourg, Quito Rayon-Richter, Noée Abita, Megan Northam, Thibault Vinçon, Emmanuelle Béart
1h 51m

Set on the night of the 1981 French presidential election and in the following days, the film follows a newly divorced mother of two teenagers who meets a troubled teenager.

Nominee – Best Original Score, César Awards
Official Selection – Berlin International Film Festival

Saturday 7/15 @ 7:45 PM
Tuesday 7/18 @ 2:30 PM

Revoir Paris
Directed by Alice Winocour
Written by Alice Winocour, Marcia Romano, Jean-Stéphane Bron
Starring Virginie Efira, Benoît Magimel, Grégoire Colin, Maya Sansa, Amadou Mbow, Nastya Golubeva Carax, Anne-Lise Heimburger, Sofia Lesaffre, Clarisse Makundul
1h 44m

Three months after surviving a terrorist attack at a bistro, Mia is still traumatized and unable to recall the events of that night. In an effort to move forward, she investigates her memories and retraces her steps.

Winner – Best Actress, César Awards
Official Selection – Director’s Fortnight

Sunday 7/16 @ 5:00 PM
Wednesday 7/19 @ 7:30 PM

Directed by Pietro Marcello
Written by Pietro Marcello, Maurizio Braucci, Maud Ameline, with the collaboration of Geneviève Brisac
Starring Juliette Jouan, Raphaël Thiéry, Noémie Lvovsky, Louis Garrel
1h 43m

Raised by her father in rural France, a girl grows up to become a lonely woman who dreams of greater possibilities. Reckoning with her future, she soon gets swept away by a rakish young pilot who literally falls from the sky.

Official Selection – Director’s Fortnight
Official Selection – New York Film Festival

Saturday 7/15 @ 12:00 PM
Monday 7/17 @ 5:00 PM

The Young Imam
Directed by Kim Chapiron
Written by Kim Chapiron, Ladj Ly (Les Misérables), Dominique Baumard, Ramzi Ben Sliman
Starring Abdulah Sissoko, Hady Berthe, Rebecca Brou, Anta Diaw, Moussa Cissé
1h 38m

A young man in his 20s becomes the inspiring imam of a humble Muslim community in France, but he struggles between his mother’s wishes for him and his true calling.

Saturday 7/15 @ 10:00 PM
Thursday 7/20 @ 5:15 PM

Click here for more information and to buy tickets!

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