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55th New York Film Festival

This edition of the festival’s main slate will feature 25 films from around the world. Opening Night is Richard Linklater’s Last Flag Flying, Todd Haynes’s Wonderstruck is Centerpiece, and Woody Allen’s Wonder Wheel will close the festival. There is also the chance to see a number of French films at the festival, many of which are being shown in the United States and North America for the first time.

BPM (120 battements par minute), directed by Robin Campillo
The film depicts the comradeship and tenacity of members of ACT UP, an AIDS activism group with mostly gay members who were too familiar with the world of the disease.

Bright Sunshine In (Un beau soleil intérieur), directed by Claire Denis
Juliette Binoche stars in this picture as Isabelle, a middle-aged Parisian artists in search of definitive love. The film drifts between one romantic attachment to another in a mysterious rhythm and feels like it’s been lit from within.

Faces Places (Visages villages), directed by Agnès Varda
88-year-old director Varda teamed up with 33-year-old visual artist JR to tour rural France and document scenes of artisanal production, workers’ solidarity and photographic arts. The resulting picture is a mix of scenes captured by the pair as well as by others who filmed the filmers. The film won this year’s L’Oeil d’or, the documentary prize. at the Cannes Film Festival.

Félicitédirected by Alain Gomis
Gomis, a French director of Guinea-Bissauan and Senegalese descent, brings the audience to the ragged and rough streets of Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of the Congo where a woman named Félicité works as a singer in a bar. When her son is injured, she must go on a journey to find the money for his medical care, exploring both the city and her soul.

Ismael’s Ghosts (Les fantômes d’Isamël), directed by Arnaud Desplechin
Mathieu Amalric plays the titular character, Ismael, who is haunted by ghosts of the past as he writes a spy film about his brother. Suddenly, his life is upended when his wife Carlotta (Marion Cotillard) returns after a 20-year disappearance. Above all, the film captures the process of creating a work of art and all the madness required.

Lover for a Day (L’Amant d’un jour), directed by Philippe Garrel
After a painful breakup, heartbroken Jeanne (Esther Garrel) moves back in with her university professor father, Gilles (Eric Caravaca), to discover that he is living with optimistic, life-loving student Ariane (Louise Chevillotte), who is the same age as Jeanne. An unusual triangular relationship emerges as both girls seek the favor of Gilles, as daughter or lover, while developing their own friendship, finding common ground despite their differences.

Mrs. Hyde (Madame Hyde), directed by Serge Bozon
Based loosely on Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the film centers on Mrs. Géquil (Isabelle Huppert) who, when struck by lightning, wakes up different from her former timid high-school-professor self. Once mocked and despise by everyone around her, with the exception of her gentle stay-at-home husband, Géquil becomes a newly powerful Mrs. Hyde with mysterious powers.