French Film Festival Headed to Marywood University

Published on Wed, November 02, 2011

Persepolis, an animated film about a young girl coming of age in Iran during the Islamic Revolution, is just one of the five films that will be shown at the upcoming Tournées French Film Festival at Marywood University. The film series will be presented during the month of November, beginning on November 4 and concluding on November 18.

Laurie McMillan, Ph.D., associate professor of English and a member of the film selection committee, is excited about her role in providing students and the community with the opportunity to preview contemporary French films.

"[The selection process] is very difficult," Dr. McMillan said, "because there are so many good films to choose. All the films we've chosen all have a strong story, and anyone can enjoy them."

Listen to Laurie McMillan discuss the film festival.

All films will be presented at 7 p.m. throughout the month of November at Marywood University's Learning Resource Center, Lynett Multi-Media Room 160. Films will include subtitles and will be shown as follows:

Date Film Synopsis
Friday, November 4 Of Gods and Men (2010) Directed by Xavier Beauvois, this film chronicles the story of eight French Trappist monks faced with threats from fundamentalist terrorists and the Algerian military. The monks must decide whether to seek safety or risk their lives.
Thursday, November 10 Seraphine (2008) Yolande Moreau plays Seraphine, a real-life artist who died in an insane asylum in 1942, and explores mental illness.
Friday, November 11 Persepolis (2007) Persepolis is the poignant story of a young girl coming of age in Iran during the Islamic Revolution.
Thursday, November 17 White Material (2008) Set in an unnamed African country, White Material centers on Maria Vial, a coffee-plantation owner who is determined to continue her business while civil war rages on around her.
Friday, November 18 The Illusionist (2010) Based on a comic strip by Jacques Tati, a struggling magician befriends a poor cleaning girl who follows him to Edinburgh. The Illusionist shows the ways people understand one another verbally. 

The Tournées Festival is a program of the French American Cultural Exchange (FACE), in partnership with the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, which aims to bring contemporary French cinema to American college and university campuses. Festival officials state that the program distributes close to $200,000 in grants annually to encourage schools to begin their own self-sustaining French film festivals.

"The festival is trying to spread French Culture and an appreciation for French films," said Dr. McMillan, when asked why it important to support foreign films. "I'm hopeful that people will give French films a chance."

After each film a faculty member will lead a discussion about the movie. Faculty from the communication arts, English and psychology departments will be participating.

For more information about the Tournées French Film Festival at Marywood University, please contact Laurie McMillan at (570) 348-2266 or