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Alliance Française French Film Festival Is Bringing a Stacked 41-Movie Program to Australian Cinemas in 2024 

French film fans, rejoice — this year's AFFFF includes Michel Gondry and Catherine Breillat's latest, plus multiple movies starring Isabelle Huppert.
By Sarah Ward
February 07, 2024
By Sarah Ward
February 07, 2024

2024 marks two decades since one of the best blends of romance, comedy, drama and sci-fi of the 21st century reached screens in the form of Michel Gondry's Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. How should you celebrate that fact? Rewatching the movie always, and also checking out the French filmmaker's latest feature at Australia's annual Alliance Française French Film Festival. In his first movie since 2015, the director draws from his own experience in semi-autobiographical comedy The Book of Solutions — one of the just-announced full AFFFF program's clear must-sees.

French film fans, rejoice — the lineup goes on from there, with 41 titles on offer overall. The festival will run across March and April in its 35th year, giving most of its stops a month of Gallic movies. So, in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide and Canberra, get ready to see plenty of France from your cinema seat. Byron Bay's season is shorter, but still lasts for three weeks.

At the end of 2023, AFFFF unveiled its first eight flicks for 2024, so audiences already had opening night's The Three Musketeers: D'Artagnan to look forward to, alongside its second part The Three Musketeers: Milady. And, the Catherine Deneuve (The Truth)-led The President's Wife, Juliette Binoche (The Staircase)-starring The Taste of Things, futuristic The Animal Kingdom, regal scandal-focused Jeanne Du Barry, legal drama All Your Faces and Laure Calamy (The Origin of Evil) in Iris and the Men as well.

Joining them are plenty of new highlights, such as Last Summer, the latest from iconic director Catherine Breillat (Abuse of Weakness), about a woman and her teenage stepson. Not one but two movies starring the great Isabelle Huppert (The Crime Is Mine) are on the roster, with The Sitting Duck casting her as IRL whistleblower Maureen Kearney and Sidonie in Japan about a love triangle that includes a ghost. And Second Round gets the closing-night spot, hailing from Albert Duponte (Bye Bye Morons), and taking aim at politics and the media.

Attendees can also check out A Difficult Year, from The Intouchables' Éric Toledano and Olivier Nakache, and with Noémie Merlant (The Innocent) and Mathieu Amalric (The French Dispatch) among the cast — plus rom-com Mr Blake at Your Service!, with author Gilles Legardinier turning director to adapt his own book, and John Malkovich (Billions) and Fanny Ardant (Well Done!) starring. Historical drama Bonnard, Pierre & Marthe is about the painter (Vincent Macaigne, Irma Vep) and his wife (Cécile de France, The Swarm), while Out of Season has Guillaume Canet (Breaking Point) and Alba Rohrwacher (La Chimera) play ex-lovers.

Like The Book of Solutions, The Taste of Things, The Animal Kingdom and romantic drama Along Came Love, both Àma Gloria and Rosalie grace the program after debuting at Cannes 2023. The first focuses on a girl and her nanny, while the second tells of a real historical figure who was born with hair covering her face and body.

Other options include Take a Chance on Me, as starring French pop singer Louane Emera; fellow comedy A Chance to Win, where two rival villages face off in rugby; the swashbuckling The Edge of the Blade; the world premiere of King of My Castle, from the writers of Welcome to the Sticks; and the animated Nina and the Secret of the Hedgehog, with Audrey Tautou (The Jesus Rolls) among the voices.

The fest is also giving classic Children of Paradise from 1945 a new big-screen celebration, taking viewers back to the 1800s with its storyline, as well as into Paris' theatre scene — because looking at France's great films from year gone by is another way to showcase the country's cinema industry and its impact.

Alliance Française French Film Festival 2024 Dates:

Tuesday, March 5–Tuesday, April 2 — Palace James St and Palace Barracks, Brisbane
Tuesday, March 5–Tuesday, April 9 — Palace Central, Palace Norton Street, The Chauvel, Roseville Cinema and Cinema Orpheum Cremorne, Sydney
Wednesday, March 6–Tuesday, April 2 — Palace Como, Kino Cinema, Palace Balwyn, Palace Brighton Bay, Palace Westgarth, Pentridge Cinema, The Astor Theatre and Palace Penny Lane, Melbourne
Wednesday, March 6–Tuesday, April 2 — Palace Raine Square, Luna on SX, Luna Leedeerville and Windsor Cinema, Perth
Thursday, March 7–Wednesday, March 27 — Palace Byron Bay, Byron Bay
Thursday, March 7–Tuesday, April 2 — Palace Electric, Canberra
Thursday, March 21–Tuesday, April 16 — Nova Prospect and Palace Nova Eastend, Adelaide

The Alliance Française French Film Festival tours Australia in March and April 2024. For more information and tickets, visit the AFFFF website.

Published on February 07, 2024 by Sarah Ward
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