The five faces of Europe
From In Bruges [+see also:
film profile] to Alatriste [+see also:
film profile] and the co-production Waltz with Bashir [+see also:
film profile], European film demonstrates its great diversity today as five new releases hit French screens alongside four US titles.
The quintet of films includes two French debut features that are poles apart from one another: Nora Hamdi’s drama Dolls and Angels [+see also:
film profile] and the comedy Seuls two [+see also:
film profile] by Eric and Ramzy.
Made on a budget of €18.4m, Seuls two is the debut directorial feature by Eric Judor and Ramzy Bedia. The stellar cast includes the two comedians, as well as Benoît Magimel, Kristin Scott Thomas and Élodie Bouchez. The film – whose humour alternates between absurd and poetical – retraces the misadventures of a policeman who has been making a fool of himself for years by trying, in vain, to catch a burglar.
Produced by Les Films du Trésor and distributed by Warner, Seuls two received a rare combination of funding, including co-production and pre-sales investment from two TV networks (€2.4m from TF1 and €1.3m from M6), as well as pre-sales from Canal + and TPS.
Writer Hamdi makes her directorial debut with Dolls and Angels, adapted from her eponymous novel. Starring acclaimed actresses Leïla Bekhti and Karina Testa, the film traces the difficult experiences of a 17-year-old girl who lives on a suburban housing estate with her family, who are mistreated by a violent father. Longing to escape, the young girl agrees to become a model, but soon realises she is falling into prostitution.
Produced by Flach Film for a budget of €3.02m, Dolls and Angels is being released by Rezo on 25 screens. The feature received €650,000 in pre-sales and co-production support from France 2 Cinéma, pre-sales from Canal + and Ciné Cinéma, and an advance on receipts from the National Film Centre (CNC).
Non-national European films are in the spotlight this Wednesday as SND release UK director Martin McDonagh’s In Bruges on 155 screens. The film stars Colin Farrell, Ralph Fiennes, Belgian actor Jérémie Renier and French actress Clémence Poesy.
Metropolitan are launching Alatriste by Spanish director Augustin Diaz Yanes on 37 screens. The film – which enjoyed enormous success at the domestic box office – stars Viggo Mortensen, Elena Anaya and Eduardo Noriega.
This week’s major release is Ari Folman’s Waltz with Bashir, which was unveiled at the latest Cannes Film Festival (see news). Co-produced by French-based Les Films d'Ici and Germany’s Razor Films, with backing from Arte France and the Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, the film is being launched on 157 screens by Le Pacte.
All these films will compete for audiences alongside US blockbuster The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. Released on 768 screens, the title stars a host of European actors, including Liam Neeson, Ben Barnes, Warwick Davis and Sergio Castellitto.
(Translated from French)