In France the 1920’s are called the “crazy years”. It was then, during the merriment of post-World War I, that the French, and in particular, Parisians, adopted the phrase ‘‘Carpe Diem’’ (seize the day). The 1920s represent the true expression of freedom, liberalization, creation and the cultural cornucopia of France; women cut their hair, and their skirts, jazz was de rigueur, cultural circles boomed and modernity was on the rise.
To pay tribute to one of the most exciting and creative times in France, this year’s cinema programme comprises two halves: One showcases masterpieces from the 1920’s. Some of these are shown as they were meant to be seen at that time (accompanied by live music), others have been restored to their former shine by the latest in state-of-the-art technology, a few are testimony to the art of excellent preservation, which has kept these rare pieces filmed between the wars in a condition that still allows viewing some 80 years later, and many have never been shown in Hong Kong, such as those directed by Rene Clair, Luis Bunuel and Cocteau.
The other half is a presentation of modern-day films that take place in France during the 1920s. Paris is revisited in Coco Chanel And Igor Stravinsky, and La Vie en Rose starring the magnificent Edith Piaf. Set in French Indochina, forbidden romance creates the drama in The Lover by Jean-Jacques Annaud and a unique documentary explores what it was like during the concession in Shanghai (Shanghai: The Roaring 20’s).
The French countryside features in Jean de Florette, Manon of the Springs, both by Claude Berry, and Therese Desqueyroux, the last film from director Claude Miller before he passed away last year. The film was first presented at the Cannes Film Festival in 2012, and this is its Hong Kong premiere.
A dazzling cast sing their hearts out in the musical Not on the Lips by Alain Resnais. There are also special screenings for young audiences that include Belleville Rendez-Vous by master of animation, Sylvain Chaumet, and Tintin.
More info, visit: http://bc.cinema.com.hk/filmfestival/FrenchMay2013/home.htmlRead less