(March 16, 2011)

Contact: Rick DelaHaya, Centenary News Services, 318.869.5073

Film Society presents "The French Connection: A French Film Week" March 18 — 24

SHREVEPORT, La.(Centenary College News Service) — The Centenary College Film Society presents their third annual "The French Connection: A French Film Week in Louisiana" Friday, March 18 through Thursday, March 24 at the Robinson Film Center.

The "French Film Week" series includes six recent award-winning French language films which demonstrate the diversity and excellence of films from the Francophone world. This year's selections include a musical romance (Songs of Love), a murder-mystery thriller (Roman de Gare), two animated family-friendly films (Azur et Asmar and A Town Called Panic), and two dramas which explore France's complicated past during World War II as well as its multi-cultural present (Un Secret and 35 Shots of Rum).

A wine and cheese reception kicks off the "French Film Week"" Friday night, March 18, from 6 to 7:30 pm at the Robinson Film Center. Joseph Dunn, Audiovisual and Artistic Attaché at the French Consulate in New Orleans, and Dana Kress, Professor of French at Centenary College and recipient of the 2011 Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities "Humanist of the Year" award will be in attendance and make brief remarks. Admission to the reception is $10 with tickets available at the door.

The films include:

Les Chansons D'Amour (Love Songs)

100 minutes. In French with English subtitles. Unrated.

Love Songs is a modernist musical about love and loss in Paris that centers around a young couple, Ismael and Julie, who in the hope of sparking their stalled relationship, enter a playful yet emotionally laced threesome with Alice. When tragedy strikes, these young Parisians are forced to deal with the fragility of life and love. For Ismael, this means negotiating through the advances of Julie's sister and a young college student — one of which may offer him redemption.

3/18 - 7:45PM
3/19 - 9:45PM
3/21 - 7:30PM
3/24 - 5:15PM

Roman de Gare (Crossed Tracks)

103 minutes. In French with English subtitles. Rated: R.

Best-selling author Judith Ralitzer (Fanny Ardant) is researching unlikely places to find characters for her next bestseller. As luck would have it, a serial killer with a penchant for magic tricks has just escaped from a high-security prison...providing the perfect source material for an intricately plotted, Hitchcockian-like mystery. Deceptively layered and intriguingly misleading, Roman de Gare is an homage to the French genre of the same name, a genre that refers to popular, easy-to-read novels.

3/18 - 5:15PM
3/19 - 7:30PM
3/21 - 5:15PM

Azur et Asmar (Azur and Asmar)

90 minutes. In French and Arabic with English subtitles. Rated PG, but appropriate for all ages.

Michel Ocelot, best known for 1998's Kirikou and the Sorceress, has proven himself to be one of the most gifted animators working in film today; his stories, though made for children, easily appeal to adults as well. Combining cut-out and CGI animation, Ocelot's fourth animated feature tells the story of two boys, the white, blue-eyed prince Azur, and the dark-skinned Asmar, both of whom are being raised by Asmar's mother.

3/19 - 1:00PM
3/20 - 1:00PM
3/23 - 5:15PM

Panique au Village (A Town Called Panic)

75 minutes. Unrated, but appropriate for all ages.

The giddy, chaotic pace in Stéphane Aubier and Vincent Patar's first feature, a marvelous fantasia made using meticulously detailed stopmotion animation and a cast of 1,500 plastic-toy figures, never lets up for a second. Gleefully defying all logic, A Town Called Panic finds its heroes, Horse, Cowboy, and Indian, living together harmoniously, with Horse partial to taking long, soapy hot showers. After a mistake involving an online order of 50 million bricks, the trio travels to the center of the Earth, where they battle an evil giant-robot penguin and find a mysterious underwater universe. During their far-flung adventures, incurable romantic Horse tries to impress an orange-maned mare, Madame Longrée, the town's devoted music teacher. Seemingly inspired by the manic energy of the Marx brothers and old Warner Bros. cartoons, A Town Called Panic celebrates the playful, nonstop anarchy of childhood imagination.

3/19 - 3:15PM
3/20 - 3:15PM
3/23 - 7:30PM

Un Secret (A Secret)

110 minutes. In French with English subtitles. Unrated.

Un Secret follows the saga of a French family in post-World War II Paris. François, a solitary, imaginative child, invents for himself a brother as well as the story of his parents` past. But on his fifteenth birthday, he discovers a dark family secret that ties his family`s history to the Holocaust and shatters his illusions forever. Adapted from Philippe Grimbert`s celebrated truth-inspired best-selling novel, Memory.

3/18 - 3:00PM
3/20 - 5:30PM
3/22 - 5:15PM
3/24 - 7:30PM

35 Rhums (35 Shots of Rum)

100 minutes.In French with English subtitles. Unrated.

A quiet yet beautiful story set in Paris's 18th arrondissement between between a widowed father, Lionel, and his university-student daughter, Joséphine, 35 Shots of Rum is director Claire Denis's warmest, most radiant work. Honoring the father and daughter's extreme closeness while suggesting its potential for suffocation, 35 Shots of Rum reveals the inevitable and necessary pain of children leaving home to start their own lives.

3/19 - 5:15PM
3/20 - 7:45PM
3/22 - 7:30PM

Co-sponsors for this event include The French program at Centenary College; Les Cahiers du Tintamarre and Les Éditions Tintamarre of Centenary College; and the Consulate General of France in New Orleans. This "French Film Week" is part of a larger series of French films shown by the Centenary Film Society at the Robinson Film Center during the fall and spring of 2010-2011. "The French Connection: A French Film Week in Louisiana" is presented also as part of The Tournées Festival of the French-American Cultural Exchange and supported by The Florence Gould Foundation, the Grand Marnier Foundation and highbrow entertainment.

All films in the "French Film Week" are free for Centenary students with valid ID and are open to the public at regular Robinson Film Center admission prices. The Robinson Film Center is located at 617 Texas Street in downtown Shreveport. For more information, contact Dr. Jefferson Hendricks, faculty director, Centenary College Film Society at 318.820.1414 or visit www.robinsonfilmcenter.org.

About Centenary College of Louisiana

Centenary College is a private, four-year arts and sciences college affiliated with the United Methodist Church. Founded in 1825, it is the oldest chartered liberal arts college west of the Mississippi River and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Centenary is one of 16 colleges and universities constituting the Associated Colleges of the South and has been recognized as "One of the Best 373 Colleges" by the Princeton Review and one of "America's Best Colleges" and one of "America's Best Private Colleges" by Forbes.com. In 2008 Centenary College celebrated 100 years in Shreveport and Bossier City.