01/06/2020 ASHLAND, Ohio -- Ashland University’s Department of Foreign Languages will hold a Tournées Film Festival in January featuring five recent French films and one classic film. The festival, which is free and open to the public, will take place each evening at 7 on Jan. 14, 15, 21, 22, 28 and 29 in the Ronk Lecture Hall in the Schar College of Education.
The festival, which is presented in collaboration with Ashland University’s College of Arts and Sciences, was made possible by a grant from the French-American Cultural Exchange received by Dr. Richard Gray, associate professor of foreign languages, who organized the festival. Gray is the only professor in the Midwest to have received this grant six of the last seven years.
Additional support also is provided by Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States, the Centre National de la Cinématographie et l'Image Animée Campus France USA, the Florence Gould Foundation and highbrow entertainment.
The event opens Jan. 14 with a screening of the 1934 classic, L’Atalante, considered one of the foundation stones of French cinema and frequently cited as one of the top 10 films ever made. Jean Vigo’s only full-length feature film -- the story of newlyweds aboard a river barge with another man, a cabin boy and a host of unruly cats – explores the comedic and dreamlike aspects of daily living.
That film will be followed on Jan. 15 by “Madame Hyde,” a 2017 adaptation of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde but set in a high school in a tough Paris suburb and infused with a mix of B-movie chills, dry humor and contemporary reality.
Vivre Riche follows on Jan. 21. A fly-on-the-wall documentary from 2017 about young internet scammers in Abidjan, the film also raises questions about the European colonial legacy and the moral compass of a young generation with few opportunities.
On Jan. 22, Le Concours (The Competition) comes to the screen. This 2016 Claire Simon documentary takes a step-by-step look at the highly competitive process students undertake in order to be admitted to La Femis, France’s leading film school.
After that comes Mes Provinciales (A Paris Education), Jean-Paul Civeyrac’s fresh spin on a time-honored narrative tradition. The audience follows the life of aspiring filmmaker and university student Etienne Tinan, using the time-honored themes of solitude, devotion, hope and hopelessness. The film will be screened Jan. 28.
The series wraps up on Jan. 29 with 2018’s Tazzeka, which also is the name of the Moroccan village that is home to Elias, an aspiring chef who finds nothing is what he imagined when he leaves his hometown for the roaring traffic of Paris.
Ashland University, ranked in the top tier of colleges and universities in U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities category for 2018, is a mid-sized, comprehensive private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Religiously affiliated with the Brethren Church, Ashland University (www.ashland.edu) deeply values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students. ###