French Film Festival: The Ladies Night “an evening à la Française”

French Film Festival: The Ladies Night “an evening à la Française”

Posted: April 02, 2024

French Film Festival: The Ladies Night “an evening à la Française”

April 02, 2024

Review by Clara Esnault

The French Film Festival runs in Sydney from March 5th to April 9th. Organised by l’Alliance Française, the festival promotes french films released recently. March 14th was a special night at Palace Cinemas Moore Park: the Ladies Night headlined by the movie The President’s Wife.

In front of the cinema, the sweet smell of hot crêpes instantly draws you in. You are welcomed by smiling women in pink tee shirts bearing the effigy of the Alliance Française. Inside bartenders serve refreshing drinks to cool off on this hot autumn evening.

There are mainly women but a few shy husband have come to accompany their wives. Conversations are noisy. Claire, a young volunteer from l’Alliance Française distributes flyers for the festival. She explains her interest for french culture “I’ve started learning french at school and I’ve discovered french films. I studied a french film in year 12, “The Intouchables”, I loved it so much that I decided to continue with my french passion and now I’m here”. Good news, this year for the 35th birthday of the festival, the film “The Intouchables” has been chosen by the audience to be screened.

A little further away, two smartly dressed friends finish their crepes and testify “We came here to have a fun night, experienced a bit of french culture and practice our french”. Indeed, every films of the festival are screened in french with english subtitles.

There are also long-time regulars who come to the festival, like Virginia a woman in her sixties we met just before the session began. “I heard about the festival quit a few years ago and we’ve been coming with my husband for a few years”.

We are now invited to enter the darkened room, for the film’s presentation speech. Suddenly silence falls and the film The President’s Wife directed by Léa Domenach begins. The session is punctuated by lots of laughter. The movie is a about Bernadette, the wife of Jacques Chirac, a former president elected in 1995. The story is an illustrious caricature of French politics. Catherine Deneuve, the famous french actress is gorgeous in Bernadette’s role.

At the end, everyone comes out of the room with empty champagne glasses and a smile on the face.

It was a successful evening!

Share "French Film Festival: The Ladies Night “an evening à la Française”"