Cinéma du Reél 2019 Overview

The 41st Cinéma du Reél

March 15-24

Nearly 50 new documentary features make up the lineup of this Paris fest, alongside many more retrospective offerings.


Offerings in the French Selection include Pascale Bodet’s NEARLY A CENTURY, about the filmmaker’s 99-year-old grandmother; Edie Laconi and Cécile Dumas’ I’M NOT GONNA DIE, a portrait of a drug injection room of a Parisian hospital; Manuela Frésil’s THE GOOD GRAIN AND THE CHAFF, which follows the lives of the children of homeless families in Annecy; Pierre Michelon’s AMARA, on the director’s search for what happened to an Algerian sent to a French penal colony; Michaël Andrianaly’s NOFINOFY, about a wandering Malagasy hairdresser; Hind Meddeb and Thim Naccache’s PARIS STALINGRAD, on the refugee experience within the titular Parisian neighborhood; and Ariane Doublet’s GREEN BOYS, on the friendship between two boys in the Normandy countryside.


More than a dozen titles vie for recognition in the International Competition, including: René Ballesteros’ DREAMS OF THE CASTLE, in which teenage prisoners in Chile recount their nightmares; Sebastian Brameshuber’s MOVEMENTS OF A NEARBY MOUNTAIN, about a Nigerian mechanic in the Austrian Alps; Gustavo Vinagre and Rodrigo Carneiro’s THE BLUE FLOWER OF NOVALIS, a portrait of a performative HIV-positive gay man; Tiago Hespanha’s CAMPO, an immersion into a Portuguese military base; Micol Roubini’s THE WAY TO THE MOUNTAINS, in whch the filmmaker seeks out a house in Ukraine supposedly built by her great-grandfather prior to WWII; Javiera Véliz Fajardo’s LIVING THERE IS NOT HELL, IT IS THE FIRE OF THE DESERT. THE PLENITUDE OF LIFE THAT STAYED THERE LIKE A TREE, an experimental observational portrait of an Argentine desert town; and Kavich Neang’s LAST NIGHT I SAW YOU SMILING, in which the filmmaker chronicles the shuttering of a Phnom Penh artists’ residence.


Other offerings include Daniele Incalcaterra and Fausta Quattrini’s CHACO, on efforts to save Paraguay from deforestation; Claire Simon’s docuseries, LE VILLAGE, including a work-in-progress of the second season, about a southern French village that has hosted a documentary festival for nearly 30 years; and Armel Hostiou’s LA PYRAMIDE INVISIBLE, about a woman born in Bosnia.

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Filed under Documentary, Film, Film Festivals, Overviews, Recommendations

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