Festival of French film: Marian hosts Tournées


Panique au Village (A Town Called - Panic)
  • Panique au Village (A Town CalledPanic)

The Tournées Film Festival is spinning its reels once again. Sponsored by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy and the French Ministry of Culture, the French film festival returns to Marian University for the fourth year in a row.

The festival will offer a wide variety of films that represent the best of contemporary French cinema—the films will cover a range of genres and subjects, while also showcasing innovations in both style and storytelling. There are films by first-time directors alongside those from respected and revered figures in French cinema.

“The festival has been a great success on many levels,” says Carolyn Johnston, an associate professor of history and the coordinator of the festival for Marian. “For the students, it brings images, ideas and cultures to their campus that they have never been exposed to before. Find more event at the Marian University web site.

Here’s a rundown of the films:

April 5 – 7 p.m.
L'Ennemi Intime (Intimate Enemies)

Set in 1959, this film is a harrowing depiction of Algeria’s war for independence. Arriving after an incident of “friendly fire” kills a commanding officer, Lieutenant Terrien instantly clashes with Sergeant Dougnac, an amoral combat veteran who stopped caring about doing the right thing years ago. As the film traces Terrien’s slow disintegration, it also depicts the absolute madness of war.

April 7 – 7 p.m.
La Fille du RER (The Girl on the Train)

Inspired by true events: the RER D (a Paris commuter line) affair of July 2004, in which a non-Jewish young woman falsely claimed to be the victim of an anti-Semitic attack by six men, whom she identified as Arabs and blacks. Jeanne’s motives for her act deliberately remain unknowable, but the film isn’t interested in easy answers. Instead, the film provides a prism through which we may begin to understand anti-Semitism, racism and what it means to declare yourself a victim.

April 9 – 2 p.m.
Panique au Village (A Town Called Panic)

A Town Called Panic finds its stop-motion heroes, Horse, Cowboy and Indian, living together harmoniously, with Horse partial to taking long, soapy hot showers. After a mistake involving an order of 50 million bricks mistakenly placed online, the trio travels to the center of the Earth, the frozen tundra and a mysterious underwater universe.

April 9 – 7 p.m.
La France (La France)

A drama about the horrors, loneliness, and camaraderie of World War I that intermittently blooms into a delirious musical. Liberty, equality, and fraternity are all dissected in the film, which laments the folly of nationalism. The songs themselves are sung by weary soldiers who come to life with their handcrafted string instruments, made from cans and other everyday detritus. Camille, a soldier’s wife who goes in search of her husband, poses as a man to join ten combatants.

April 10 – 2 p.m.
C'est dur d'être aimé par des cons (It's Hard Being Loved by Jerks)

This important documentary on the freedom of the press, censorship, and the right of religious minorities looks at a crucial 2007 Paris trial. Several Islamic organizations brought charges of racist slander against a French news weekly for reprinting satirical cartoons depicting the prophet Mohammed. Amid the media circus surrounding the case, the film captures cogent, passionate speakers on both sides of the argument, reminding viewers of the absolute necessity of both the right to publish and the right to protest.


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