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Tournées Film Festival
Seven diverse French movies make up the first Radford University Tournées Film Festival hosted by a committee of faculty from the College of Visual and Performing Arts, starting March 22.
The Tournées Film Festival is a joint project between the FACE Foundation and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, who provide French cinema viewing opportunities to American college and university campuses. For 19 years, the festival has partnered with over 450 universities and has provided nearly $200,000 in Tournées Film Festival grants every year.
Radford University received such a grant and is offering a variety of films March 22 through April 7. These include “The Illusionist,” “GriGris,” “ Holy Motors,” “The Missing Picture,” “Monsieur Lazhar,” “Mauvais Sang,” and “ Jimmy P.”
“We thought this would be a good opportunity to use a popular visual arts medium as a means of creating opportunities to see how issues of creative and social transformation can be expressed in movies,” said Roann Barris, chair of the Department of Art. “We hope to attract students and faculty from all disciplines to these movies. The committee which put this together is itself interdisciplinary, consisting of faculty from dance, art, education, and the core curriculum.”
Committee members involved with bringing these films to the university are: Eloise Philpot, Richard Bay, Steve Arbury, Andrew Ross, Sal Barajas, Sean Kotz, and Roann Barris.
Schedule, Locations and Synopses
“The Illusionist” (PG) – March 22 at 5 p.m. – Hurlburt Auditorium
“The Illusionist,” made by the director of “The Triplets of Belleville,” is an animated feature film from 2010. It is the love story of a magician, who is upstaged by his rabbit and who cannot compete with the Beatles. Alice, a young cleaning girl from Edinburgh, magically transforms the magician’s life.
“GriGris” (Unrated) – March 25 at 6 p.m. – Hurlburt Auditorium
“GriGris,” made in Chad in 2013, is a French-Arabic film that tells the story of a spectacular dancer named GriGris whose physical disability has made him an outcast when he is not amazing the crowds with his dancing. He and Mimi, a prostitute, become involved in illegal activities in an attempt to pay his father's hospital bills. Eventually they must flee for their lives.
“Holy Motors” (Unrated) – March 29 at 12 p.m. – 203 McGuffy Hall
“Holy Motors,” a 2012 movie from Leos Carax, is the story of a man who, like a movie, transforms himself into 12 different people in one day as he pursues the "beauty of the act." It begins as a dream sequence in a movie theater, ultimately celebrating the art of cinema.
“The Missing Picture” (Unrated) – March 29 at 3 p.m. – 203 McGuffy Hall
“The Missing Picture” is a film about the barbarities of the Khmer Rouge, made by someone who fled from the occupation. How can an artist recreate the horrors he has experienced? In this movie, Rithy Panh uses art to do just that, making clay and sculptural surrogate figures and detailed dioramas for his artistic retelling of these incomprehensible events in his life.
“Monsieur Lazhar” (PG-13) – April 1 at 6 p.m. – Hurlburt Auditorium
“Monsieur Lazhar” tells the story of the effect of a school teacher's suicide on his sixth-grade students from the perspective of both the students and their new teacher – an unsentimental but compassionate movie about education.
“Mauvais Sang” (Unrated) – April 5 at 5 p.m. – Hurlburt Auditorium
“Mauvais Sang,” also made by Leos Carax, is set in Paris. It is the romance of a card sharp with the girlfriend of his gangster partner; the most dramatic scene is the parachute jump with the lovers tethered together (performed by the actors themselves).
“Jimmy P” (Unrated) – April 7 at 5 p.m. – 203 McGuffy Hall
“Jimmy P” is a study of the relationship between a Blackfoot Indian who served in WW II and his psychoanalyst as he tries to uncover the source of his paralyzing headaches.
Celebrating with the festival theme, students in the graphic design typography class taught by Ken Smith, associate professor of art, designed gig posters based on the movies. These are the graphics included with the above schedule. All the posters will be exhibited in the RU Art Museum Gallery at the Bondurant Center Downtown April 1-11 with a an opening reception 5 p.m., April 2.
This international festival of French movies is a designated university Scholar-Citizen program. Admission is free due to backing from the McConnell Library, the College of Visual and Performing Arts, and from the Tournées Festival.
DVDs are also on reserve in McConnell for private, small screen preview.
Tournées Festival was made possible with the support of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the U.S., the Centre National de la Cinématographie et de l’Image Animée, and the Franco-American Cultural Fund. Festival sponsors are Florence Gould Foundation, Campus France USA, highbrow entertainment, and the Franco-American Cultural Fund.
For more information, call (540) 831-5778.