L’Illusioniste/ The Illusionist

The Tournées Festival of New French Cinema
Friday, January 27, 2012 - 7:00pm

Sylvain Chomet’s delightful follow-up to 2003’s The Triplets of Belleville is another exquisitely animated film, one based on an unproduced script by the French comic genius Jacques Tati. As an homage to the source material, Chomet’s title character is the spitting image of Tati. This middle-aged, slightly stoop-shouldered magician is upstaged by his rabbit during performances in Paris; at his shows his London, the Illusionist can’t begin to compete with a wildly popular proto-Beatles band. But he is adored by Alice, a poor cleaning girl who follows him to Edinburgh where the two form a touching father-daughter bond. Though neither the magician nor his young charge speak each other’s language, The Illusionist, like Tati’s work, beautifully shows the ways people understand each other nonverbally.

(Sylvain Chomet, UK/France, 2010, 35mm, 80 min)

The Tournées Festival of New French Cinema
January 6-February 3, 2012
For the fourth year, the FSC and France Chicago Center partner to bring a series of contemporary French films to campus. This winter, spend Friday evenings with the films of five innovative directors whose work represents the best of French cinema today.

The Tournées Festival was made possible with the support of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, the French Ministry of Culture (CNC), The Florence Gould Foundation, The Grand Marnier Foundation and highbrow entertainment.