The 2023 French and Francophone Film Festival presents three feature films that ask what it means to imagine the possibility of other lives. In all three films, the central characters delve deeply into the lives of others and question the limits of their ability to imagine or enter those worlds. The first film showing on February 13 is Alice Diop’s 2022 Saint Omer which offers a sensitive and unsettling portrait of a woman accused of murdering her infant and a woman journalist assigned to cover the trial. The film has been described as “at once a tense courtroom drama, a work of abstracted psychological portraiture, an inquiry into human agency, and a provocative examination of the limits of myth and cross-cultural knowledge.”
The second film showing on February 20 is Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Trouilh’s 2021 film Gagarine which explores a young boy’s response to the demolition of his housing project, showing how through imagination and repair, he transforms the building into a rocket ship. The third and final film showing on February 27 is the 2021 film Memory Box by Khalil Joreige and Joanna Hadjithomas which follows a young Montreal woman as she unravels the repressed memory of her mother’s adolescence in 1980s Beirut, Lebanon. All films are free and open to the public.