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Classics of French Cinema: “French Cancan”

Both a rollicking musical retelling of the birth of the French Cancan and the legendary Moulin Rouge and a wise meditation on the relationship between life and art, Jean Renoir’s 1955 masterpiece finds struggling impresario Henri Danglard trying to improve his fortunes by reviving an old dance and founding a new nightclub in Montmartre. With cameos by music-hall greats including Edith Piaf, French Cancan is an ebullient celebration of the singers and dancers of the 19th century Paris café-concert, gloriously filmed in a palette reminiscent of the Impressionists and the director’s own father Auguste Renoir.

During a special 30-minute talk in French at 6:45pm, journalist and TV personality Olivier Barrot will share his passionate insights, taking you deep into the social and cultural contexts of the film.