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Coming Soon! The 5th Annual Fort Kent French Film Festival

February 26, 2010

NR10024

The fifth annual Fort Kent French Film Festival will begin on Thursday, March 11 and will run through Sunday, March 14. All films will be shown at the University of Maine Fort Kent’s Fox Auditorium. Show times will be 6 and 8:30 p.m.

The festival will feature a series of five different contemporary French language films over a four-day period. The films will be shown in French, with English subtitles.
 
Admission for each movie is $3.50. A festival pass, to see all movies, may be purchased for $10. UMFK students attend free.
 
According to Katharine Harrington, University of Maine at Fort Kent assistant professor of French and the festival's director, “I have been encouraged by the steadily growing popularity of the French film festival each year. Now in our fifth year, this year's selection of films has something for everyone including several award winning films. I invite the entire campus and community to come enjoy an evening of high quality foreign film that we don't often have the chance to see.”
 
The first film of the festival is Entre les murs (The Class),which will be shown on Thursday, March 11 at 6 p.m. and on Sunday, March 14 at 8:30 p.m.  Written by and starring a real-life teacher, this hybrid documentary/drama is an absorbing journey into a multicultural high school in Paris, over the course of a school year. The film explores the complexities of education from the differing viewpoints of the students, teachers, administrators and parents.
 
The second film, Elle s’appelle Sabine (Her name is Sabine) is a moving portrait of Sabine, a 38-year old autistic woman filmed by her sister, the French actress Sandrine Bonnaire. The film tells her story through personal footage filmed by the actress over a period of 25 years. This very intimate film exposes an inadequate care structure for disabled people and its dramatic consequences. The film will be shown on Thursday, March 11 at 8:30 p.m. and Sunday, March 14 at 6 p.m.  
 
On Friday, March 12 at 6 p.m. and on Saturday, March 13 at 8:30 p.m. the film Le fils de l’épicier (The Grocer’s Son) will be shown.  The film is about how Antoine grudgingly leaves his life in Paris to return home to the south of France to take over the family business when his father has a sudden heart attack. His family’s mobile grocery store is integral to the daily shopping of the often feisty elderly people living in the local countryside. This charming film offers beautiful scenery and subtle humor.
 
La graine et le mulet (The Secret of the Grain) will be shown on Friday, March 12 at 8:30 p.m. In the southern France port city of Sète, the tired 60-year-old, Slimane, drags himself to an increasingly difficult shipyard job. Despite the years of scissions and tensions, his family rallies around him to help realize his dreams of restoring an old boat in the harbor into a floating couscous restaurant.
 
The film Il y a longtemps que je t’aime (I’ve Loved You So Long) will only be shown on Saturday, March 13 at 6 p.m. Kristen Scott Thomas stars as Juliette a former physician who’s just completed a 15-year prison sentence for murdering her young son. This powerful story of familial struggles and redemption follows the shell-shocked Juliette who returns to live with her younger sister, Léa, as she attempts to find her place in society.
 
Additional sponsorship was received from the UMFK Student Senate and UMFK Student Nurses Organization (SNO).
 
Harrington stresses the fact that the films are accessible to everyone, not just French   speakers, since they all are subtitled in English.
 
Festival passes may be purchased in advance at the office of University Relations, by calling (207) 834-7557 or at the door. 
 
For more information, contact Katharine Harrington at (207) 834-7629 or by e-mail at: katharine.harrington@maine.edu