France

Rose Lowder – Bouquet d’Images (1978-1995)

After training as a paintor and sculptor in artist’s studios and art schools in Lima (The Art Center, La Escuela de Bellas Artes) and in London (Regent Street Polytechnic, Chelsea School of Art), Rose LOWDER worked in London as an artist while earning a living in the film industry as an editor. From 1977 onwards she concentrated on studying the visual aspect of the cinematographic process, and was encouraged by Jean Rouch and his staff at the University de Paris X to present some of her work as a thesis under the title The experimental film as an instrument towards visual research (1987).Since 1977 Lowder has been active programming rarely shown films. In order to make this body of work available to a wider public, she constituted a collection of films and paper documents, The Experimental Film Archive of Avignon (1981). Since 1996 Lowder is also associate professor at the University de Paris I. Read More »

Jan Kounen – 99 francs (2007)

A first person diatribe against modern consumerist society as seen through the eyes of a cynical advertising executive whose efforts to get fired from his job backfire as he keeps getting promoted. Read More »

Claude Miller – Thérèse Desqueyroux (2012)

The unhappily married woman struggles to break free from social pressures and her boring suburban setting. Read More »

Claude Lelouch – La Vie, l’amour, la mort aka Life, Love, Death (1969)

Review Summary
The title Life Love Death (originally La Vie, L’amour, la Mort) pretty much runs the gamut of the subject matter which normally appeals to French filmmaker Claude Lelouch. Awaiting execution for murder, Souad Amidou reflects on the events leading up to this sorry contingency. It seems that Amidou can only cohabit with prostitutes, thus he seeks out satisfaction in all the side streets of Europe. Disturbed by a whore’s insults when he was unable to perform, Amidou goes completely off the deep end and begins cutting a swath of death from one end of Spain to another. Lelouch’s principal stylistic decision in Life Love and Death is to draw as many parallels as possible between sex and bullfighting. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide Read More »

Georges Méliès – Le monstre aka The Monster (1903)

Plot Synopsis:
An Egyptian prince has lost his beloved wife and he has sought a dervish who dwells at the base of the sphinx. The prince promises him a vast fortune if the dervish will only give him the opportunity of gazing once more upon the features of his wife. The dervish accepts the offer. He brings in from a neighboring tomb the receptacle containing the remains of the princess. He opens it and removes the skeleton, which he places upon the ground close beside him. Then, turning to the moon and raising his arms outstretched toward it, he invokes the moon to give back life to her who is no more. The skeleton begins to move about, becomes animated, and arises. The dervish puts it upon a bench and covers it with a white linen; a masque conceals its ghostly face. Read More »

Marcel Ophüls – Faites vos jeux, mesdames AKA Make your Bets, Ladies (1965)

Synopsis
Exciting Eddie Constantine outing finds Eddie playing a special agent searching for missing NATO weapons. When he encounters a scientist who has invented a ring that emits a paralysis spray, the hard-boiled spy saves the day with some very Bondian heroics… Read More »

Various – Chacun son cinema aka To Each His Cinema (2007)

A collective film of 33 shorts

Review:
The specter of the death of cinema and the communal movie experience hangs like an ironic shroud over “To Each His Own Cinema,” a mostly engaging compilation of 33 three-minute films made by leading international auteurs on the occasion of the Cannes Film Festival’s 60th birthday. Venture was conceived and produced by fest prexy Gilles Jacob as a way to celebrate the cinema rather than Cannes per se, and the directors were asked only to express “their state of mind of the moment as inspired by the motion picture theater.” Collection was televised throughout France on Canal Plus simultaneously with its Cannes preem and will be released on DVD in Gaul on May 25. Read More »