A marvelously robust and compelling group of French shorts. They are all satisfyingly different filled with flashes of honesty, humour and a little horniness
AHMED’S SONG (Le chant d’Ahmed) Director: Foued Mansour
The low key charm is real as young Mike, a chancer and wannabe rapper, has to work at the public baths while on probation. He is befriended by Ahmed a weary but wise immigrant co-worker. Friendship blossoms as they are both able to see how the other’s life could be better more clearly than they can their own (30m)
SHEEP, WOLF, AND A CUP OF TEA (Moutons, loup et tasse de thé) Director: Marion Lacourt
Dreamy animation conjures up the descent into sleep of a family who all have their own peculiar personal nocturnal habits.The minimalist use of sound is curiously spellbinding and the visuals are wonderfully hallucinogenic (12m)
TUESDAY FROM 8 TO 6 Director: Cecilia de Arce
A reminder of why you would never want to be back in school or be a teacher. Kindly school monitor Nevine’s fractious day is riddled with insolence, indifference and detentions as she tries to save middle school kids on the verge of ruining their lives.
THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US AND THE SKY (La distance entre nous et le ciel) Director: Vasilis Kekatos
The first of the shorts with a gay theme. A flirtation between two strangers at a gas station straddles between the ridiculous and the poetic. Just as flirtation should (9m).
THE TEARS THING (Le coup des larmes) Director: Clémence Poésy
Some people dream of accidentally bumping into their ex while looking gorgeous. Actress Florence bumps into her ex-girlfriend while learning how to shoot a gun for a role as an assassin. Is this the opportunity for revenge or reunion? It’s a twisty girl on girl action movie that’s more Bourne than Bond. (25m)
MAGNETIC HARVEST, (La traction de pôles) Director: Marine Levéel
Will organic farmer Mika blow it with his true love as he is faced with an overabundant crop of cocks down on the farm? Or will he be distracted hunting for his lost piggy? It’s all tractors and tension in this one. If only Emmerdale was more like this (24m)
THE GLORIOUS ACCEPTANCE SPEECH OF NICOLAS CHAUVIN Director: Benjamin Crotty
Billed as a bonus movie this incomprehensibly surreal jumble of historical references verges on Monty Python. Possibly it means more to a French audience but best not risk it unless you love your baguette with double fromage. The rest of the shorts are much easier to understand (and like)
NEW FRENCH SHORTS 2020 :The annual showcase of some of the most exciting new cinematic voices from France – charming, petite Gallic pleasures, including award winners from Cannes, Locarno & more!
Opening Fri, May 15 in U.S. Virtual Screening Rooms Full list of cities: https://kinomarquee.com/new-french-shorts-2020
Review by Andrew Hebden
Queerguru Contributing Editor ANDREW HEBDEN is a MEDIA & CULTURAL STUDIES graduate spending his career between London, Beijing and NYC as an expert in media and social trends. As part of the expanding minimalist FIRE movement he recently returned to the UK and lives in Soho. He devotes as much time as possible to the movies, theatre and the gym. His favorite thing is to try something (anything) new every day.