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New French Cinema Week

Film, Film Series

AFS Cinema
6259 Middle Fiskville Rd
Austin, TX 78752

November 9 - November 12, 2023


The New French Cinema Week returns on November 9-12 at AFS Cinema with a new programming of French feature and short films, supported by Villa Albertine.

Austin Film Society’s annual celebration of the Francophone world’s most distinct new cinematic voices is back, programmed and presented in partnership with the Premiers Plans Festival of Angers, France. Between November 9 and 12, cinephiles will have a unique opportunity to see new French-language films including festival favorites and award-winners, many of them undistributed in the US.

November 9 | 5:30PM | Opening Reception 

November 9 | 7:00PM | For My Country, directed by Rachid Hami

The meaning of “love of country” is explored in-depth in this modern, expansive story of a bi-cultural French family grappling with their son’s military death. Ismael and Aissa are brothers who emigrated from Algeria to France as children. As their lives take starkly different paths in France and beyond, each reckons with their debt to family and to country. Based on Rachid Hami’s personal story and memories of his late brother. Writer-director Rachid Hami will join in person for the screening and Q&A.

November 10 | 7:30PM | Mother and Son, directed by Léonor Serraille

Cannes Caméra d’Or winner Léonor Serraille directs this ambitious family epic, spanning from 1980s France to the present day. A young woman, Rose, moves with her two sons from Côte d’Ivoire to Paris with a vision for a different kind of life. A subtle, rich, and cinematic examination of family and belonging, lensed by master cinematographer Hélène Louvart.

November 11 | 2:30PM | Junkyard Dog, directed by Jean-Baptiste Durand

The days and nights are long in the Languedoc-Roussillon countryside. Here, a young man, Mirales, anoints himself king of the near-empty streets of his ancient small town, where every day is just about the same for his group of aimless young friends. With nothing better to distract them, Mirales lords over his best friend, nicknamed Dog, and the duo’s toxic relationship grows more punishing by the day. Rising French star Raphaël Quenard (known for his work with Quentin Dupieux) shines in this beautifully directed take on the discontents of contemporary rural youth. Featuring a virtual live Q&A with director Jean-Baptiste Durand.

November 11 | 5:30PM | New French Shorts

A selection of some of the greatest new short films from Francophone directors on the festival circuit. Includes the Sundance and Black Star selection SÈT LAM from Reunionese filmmaker Vincent Fontano; DRÔLES D’OISEAUX, an animated selection by emerging female indie animator Charlie Belin; comedy FIVE-O featuring Jeanne Balibar; and BYE BYE, winner of the César Award for Best Short Film. Featuring an in-person Q&A with SÈT LAM director Vincent Fontano.

November 12 | 2:30PM | Four Daughters, directed by Kaouther Ben Hania

Tunisian filmmaker Kaouther Ben Hania (THE MAN WHO SOLD HIS SKIN) inventively reconstructs the family history of a Tunisian mother named Olfra Hamouni in collaboration with Olfra and two of her daughters. Together with a cast of actors, they evoke the memories of the girls’ two missing sisters and the circumstances leading to the sisters’ disappearance. Winner of Best Documentary at the Cannes Film Festival, FOUR DAUGHTERS is a film that tries to find meaning in the tragic separation of a family of Tunisian women, while challenging the medium of film itself as a transmitter of family histories.

November 12 | 5:00PM | Love According to Dalva, directed by Emmanuelle Nicot

Emmanuelle Nicot’s sensitive drama about a teenager’s recovery from familial abuse in a group home was heralded as one of the most promising debuts at Cannes in 2022. Featuring an astounding lead performance by new-discovery Zelda Samson in the title role, the film offers rich detail and unique insights into youth trauma recovery, challenging assumptions about troubled teens.

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