Events and French Movies playing in Theaters




January 6th

+ The Conquest
Directed by Xavier Durringer
The Conquest Showtimes

The most hotly anticipated film at the Cannes Film Festival was The Conquest, the first French film ever made about the nation’s President while in power. A treat for political junkies, in the same mode as The Queen and Il Divo, as well as Oliver Stone’s W. “Politics gets personal in The Conquest, a vivid re-imagining of French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s rise to power and the simultaneous unraveling of his marriage. As the first French leader to divorce—and then remarry—while in office, Sarkozy’s real-life saga is the stuff of soap operas, and director Xavier Durringer treats it as such, viewing the five years of political jockeying that preceded Sarkozy’s 2007 election through the lens of his relationship with then-wife, Cecilia.

January 13th

+ Carnage
Directed by Roman Polanski
Carnage Showtimes

The bitterly amusing story of two families who become locked in a showdown after their children are involved in a playground squabble, Carnage shines a spotlight on the risible contradictions and grotesque prejudices of four well-heeled American parents. Shot in real time as the four adults meet to settle the dispute, Carnage pits power couple Nancy (Kate Winslet) and cell phone-addicted Alan (Christoph Waltz) against the liberal writer and campaigner Penelope (Jodie Foster) and her wholesaler husband, Michael (John C. Reilly). Unpredictable and shocking, the film hilariously exposes the hypocrisy lurking behind their polite façade.


January 20th

Directed by Win Wenders
Pina Showtimes

Pina Bausch is a legendary dancer and choreographer. Her unique creations transformed the language of dance and offer a visual experience like no other.
This revolutionary 3D film PINA from director Wim Wenders captures the aesthetic of Pina Bausch’s greatest works in a thrilling way.


The Best of Annecy

Friday, January 13 & Sunday, January 15
San Francisco Film Society

Back by popular demand! The Annecy International Animated Film Festival, led by Serge Bromberg, who garnered the Novikof Award at this year’s San Francisco International Film Festival, is widely regarded as the most important festival for animation in Europe and as a bellwether for the evolution of one of the most creative forms in cinema. The Best of Annecy—a reprise of the ever-popular SF International Animation Festival program—presents a dynamic and entertaining array of shorts that appeared in Annecy this year.

Henri-Georges Clouzot: The Cinema of Disenchantment

January 12 – February 4
Pacific Film Archive

French director Henri-Georges Clouzot’s virtuosic way with suspense—in acclaimed thrillers such as Diabolique and Wages of Fear, among othersearned him the title “French Hitchcock.” But his gripping films, often tinged with sardonic humor, had a hard-edged realism born of the pessimism of war-torn France. “Whereas Hitchcock’s pictures tend to be set . . . in the world of archetypes, Clouzot always seems bent on recreating life itself with all its contradictions

Austere Perfectionism: The Films of Robert Bresson

January 19, 2012 – February 25, 2012
Pacific Film Archive

This complete retrospective of French director Robert Bresson’s fourteen films—austere and controlled, yet replete with compassion—reveals the beauty and perfectionism of his singular body of work. “Bresson touched something very close to the bone of what French cinema is about; ultimately he defined it” (Olivier Assayas)


+The Artist
Directed by Michel Hazanavicius

Hollywood, 1927: As silent movie star George Valentin wonders if the arrival of talking pictures will cause him to fade into oblivion, he sparks with Peppy Miller, a young dancer set for a big break.
Read our article
The New York Times review
The Artist Showtimes

+Le Havre
Directed by Aki Kaurismäki

When an African boy arrives by cargo ship in the port city of Le Havre, an aging shoe shiner takes pity on the child and welcomes him into his home.
Read our article
Le Havre showtimes


+Midnight in Paris
Directed by Woody Allen

A romantic comedy about a family traveling to the French capital for business. The party includes a young engaged couple forced to confront the illusion that a life different from their own is better.
Midnight in Paris showtimes

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