Walk this Way: same directors, new films
The directors of the 34 films of the Walk this Way project never stop. Many amongst them have already directed other feature films: from social dramas to regressive comedies, there is something for everyone's taste.
Michel Gondry: Microbe et Gasoil
After the lively documentary Is the man who is tall happy? An Animated Conversation with Noam Chomsky on VoD since the 1st June, the renowned French filmmaker Michel Gondry returns with a new personal feature film, a comedy about two young friends who take on a crazy project: to build a car using a few boards and a lawn mower, and then set off on the roads of France...
Released in French cinemas in July 2015 Microbe and Gasoline is a tender and touching comedy about friendship and adolescence, inspired by the whimsical film-maker's own childhood memories. "We were a family of hippies from Versailles, we were very pampered by our parents, not at all bourgeois, and I had always been friends with the 'social cases' at school. I started to put together all my memories and the result is this story of friendship", explains Gondry. "I really wanted to make something which came completely from me, something which is based on characters, with a truly linear narrative, and a very simple filming technique.
Jérôme Enrico: Cerise
His comedy Paulette (VoD from the 1st September), in which a retired woman becomes a cannabis dealer,was awarded 1st Prize in the Bernhard Wicki Awards and was a great box office success. Cerise, the new film from French director Jérôme Enrico is again a comedy which has a woman as its heroine, but this time it is about a young woman (played by the daughter of Isabelle Adjani, Zoé Adjani-Vallat), whose mother sends her to the Ukraine to stay with the father she does not know.
"The film is inspired by my daughter-in-law, Irina, who gave us this idea, a kind of fashion victim, who all of a sudden goes to live with her father in the Ukraine. It was the starting point", says Enrico. "It's a bit like the coming of age novel of an adolescent with her world of cheap trash, her far-fetched dreams, [...] and who little by little matures, grows up through her time spent in 'a different society." Cerise, a real comedy about adolescence, was released in France in April 2015.
Anthony Marciano: Robin Hood, The True Story
Anthony Marciano and the humourist and comedian Max Boublil together wrote the script for The Brats (available on VoD from the 1st September), a transgenerational comedy released in 2013, which had more than a million sales in France.
Two years later, the director brings to us his new feature film: Robin Hood, The True Story. In this re-worked version, Robin Hood (played by Boublil) is a bad guy who, with his companion Tuck, only steals from the poor, women or the elderly: the end of the model hero. For Marciano, the idea "was to create a character like that, starting from Robin Hood who was supposed to be brave, good, noble, a risk taker who sacrificed his life to help the poor, and then to make him into a crook". This film was also released in French cinemas in April 2015.
Pierre Jolivet: The Night Watchman
Armed Hands, the 14th feature film by Pierre Jolivet, released in 2012, is a thriller which received a lot of praise from the public.
Three years later, the French director takes on The Night Watchman, a part thriller/part social drama based on the unemployment crisis. The story revolves around Franck (Olivier Gourmet), a former skilled worker and union delegate who, after losing his job, becomes a security guard in a shopping centre. Previously at the forefront of the social struggle, he is now resigned to his new life. According to the director, The Night Watchman is a dark film, a reflection of "our hard times". Pierre Jolivet, who is devoted to social drama, has again chosen the form of thriller to portray the crisis. "The thriller is the best way to talk about serious subjects whilst distracting the viewer".
Johanna Vuoksenmaa: Adult camp
After focusing on broken marriages in 21 Ways to Ruin a Marriage - the most popular Finnish film of 2013 with more than 400,000 box office sales, and available on VoD from the 15th October 2015, Johanna Vuoksenmaa brings us a comedy about personal development: Adult Camp, was released in Finland January 2015.
Written by the director, Adult Camp tells the story of a group of men and women who spend their summer at a camp for adults, on the Turku archipelago. These individuals in search of personal discovery will return home changed after their experience.
Ferenc Török: No Man's Island
In 2012, the Hungarian director Ferenc Török wrote and directed Isztambul, his fourth fictional feature film. The story is about a mother who decides to run away after her life falls apart following the break-up of her marriage. This film has been available on VoD since the 23rd November.
The director returned in 2014 with No Man's Island, which had its world premiere at the 42nd edition of Hungarian Film Week. The film follows the misadventures of three young people in their search for happiness: a taxi driver who is saving up to buy a house on a Pacific Island, a talented basketball player who does not trust her, and a runaway bride.
Janez Burger: Avtošola/Driving School
Silent Sonata (on VoD from the 30th September), Slovenian director Janez Burger's third feature film, represented Slovenia in the 'Best Foreign Language Film' category of the 2012 Oscar Awards. Silent Sonata is a moral drama in which the action takes place following a war in an unspecified country. With no dialogue, Silent Sonata relies on an impressive photography and tremendous technical perfection.
Driving School, the director's latest film, tells the story of Robert, an unscrupulous investor who tries to gain ownership of a piece of land in order to build a shopping centre. He has two obstacles to overcome: the driving school which owns the land and his own daughter, Lija, who wants to take driving lessons with the school. Driving School was released in Slovenian cinemas in Februay 2015.
Magnus Gertten: Every face has a name
In directing his documentary Harbour of Hope (2011), Magnus Gertten addressed a little-known event: in the spring of 1945, 30,000 concentration camp survivors disembarked at the quiet little port of Malmö in Sweden . In order to tackle this historic event, the Swedish director used numerous films and archive images, along with commentaries from the three survivors.
In February 2015, the follow-on from this documentary was released in Swedish cinemas. In Every face has a name, survivors of the Second World War revisit their story against a backdrop of footage taken from a film which was shot in April 1945 as they arrived in Sweden. Gertten explains, "It is obvious that this documentary has a humanistic objective. The characters which feature in the archived footage are not simply anonymous victims. They are real people who have names, just like us. My film gives names to the many survivors who arrived in Malmö on the 28th April 1945".
26 October 2015, by Cineuropa