Virtual Cinema | French Film Festival | March 3–28 February 16, 2021
Each year, more than 200 million people worldwide see French films, and Paris has the highest density of cinemas anywhere. While most U.S. theaters remain closed, MFAH audiences can still enjoy their fix of French films this March—the international month of French Culture.
MFAH Films presents the French Film Festival in collaboration with Boston’s Department of Time and Space. Ten new films span many genres, and we’re certain you’ll enjoy the je ne sais quoi that is French cinema.
Funny French films are a tradition at the MFAH, and this festival does not disappoint. Quentin Dupieux’s Keep an Eye Out combines deadpan humor and a clever script in a story starring festival favorite Benoît Poelvoorde as an unhinged police officer. My Donkey, My Lover & I is a female-directed comedy about a schoolteacher (Laure Calamy) spontaneously deciding to secretly follow her married lover and his family on a hiking vacation.
Among the dramatic features are two films based on historical events. The animated Josep by Le Monde cartoonist Aurel recounts a painful chapter of French history through the life of Catalonian artist Josep Bartolí (whose real-life mistress was Frida Kahlo). Faithful follows Algerian communist Fernand Iveton (Vincent Lacoste) and his wife, Hélène (Vicky Krieps), as they endure harassment and accusations in 1950s Paris.
Night Shift, a police drama from Anne Fontaine, follows three officers (including Omar Sy, the star of Lupin, and Virginie Efira of Sibyl) transporting a man (Payman Maadi of A Separation) who’s about to be deported. In Tazzeka, a Moroccan chef learns the ropes in Paris, and in Sol, a famous tango dancer re-evaluates her past mistakes. In Perfumes, Emmanuelle Devos plays a temperamental “nose” for a perfumery who develops an unlikely friendship with her chauffeur.
• French Film Festival / WATCH HERE March 3–28. Your ticket ($10 per film / $80 for a 10-film pass) supports the MFAH and provides a 2-day window to view each film.
This event is part of the French Cultures Festival coordinated by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in Houston.
Additional partnership support is provided by the Department of Time and Space in Boston.
“Faithful,” “Josep,” and “My Donkey, My Lover & I” are part of 2021 Young French Cinema, an initiative of UniFrance and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy.
Underwriting for the Film Department is provided by Tenaris and the Vaughn Foundation. Generous funding is provided by Nina and Michael Zilkha; The Consulate General of the Republic of Korea; Franci Neely; Carrin Patman and Jim Derrick; Lois Chiles Foundation; ILEX Foundation; L’Alliance Française de Houston; and The Foundation for Independent Media Arts.