Bank holiday

Bank holiday: On Mon 25 May, the Cultural Centre will open its doors at 12pm. The library will be closed as usual. We apologise for any inconvenience.

A Thousand Plateaus: a French Philosophy Workshop

This one-day workshop will bring together internationally recognised experts on the work of French theorists Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari to discuss their magnum opus, A Thousand Plateaus (1980). Five philosophers will each take up one of the ‘plateaus’ that make up A Thousand Plateaus, exploring its significance and opening it up to wider discussion.

10.30am – 6pm | in English | £3

Full details of the programme


Huit Femmes

A deliciously camp game of cluedo featuring a full star line up of France’s leading ladies in diva mode. Isolated in a snow bound house where a man has been murdered, all are suspects… and all of them have a chance to sing! Ozon beautifully describes this furnace of feminine charm, decadence and evil embedded in a bleak wintery landscape.

As part of French Leading Ladies.

La Piscine

While on holiday near St Tropez the couple Marianne and Jean-Paul enjoy lazing and making love around the pool. Things take a chillier turn when Marianne’s former lover appears with his teenage daughter. The onscreen reunion of the former dream couple (Alain Delon and Romy Schneider) adds to the tension of this taught psychological drama.

As part of French Leading Ladies. This week: Romy Schneider in La Piscine


Hansen-Løve gives us a fictionalised account of the French house boom that spawned Daft Punk, Cassius and others. With a loose narrative spanning two decades, Eden revolves around aspiring DJ Paul, as he helps put the so-called ‘French Touch’ on the world dance map. This story of a briefly flaring idyll is a tender, exuberant, musically dizzy panorama that comes across like Flaubert’s Sentimental Education with a Frankie Knuckles remix.

See also the New French Faces season

Salt of the Earth

After 40 years spent travelling through the continents, in the footsteps of an ever-changing humanity, the photographer Sebastião Salgado has witnessed some of the major events of our recent history; international conflicts, starvation and exodus. His son, Juliano, who went with him during his last travels, and Wim Wenders, himself a photographer, reveal his last project in the pristine territories of wild fauna and flora as a tribute to the planet’s beauty.

Li’l Quinquin

Originally conceived for the French-German television network Arte as a four-part serial and set right across the Channel in Dumont’s familiar Northern France, P’tit Quinquin is an absurdist, slapsticky, metaphysical and at times disturbing murder mystery. Capitaine Van der Weyden investigates on the discovery of human remains stuffed inside a dead cow in a World War II German bunker and has to contend with a band of young scoundrels led by P’tit Quinquin.


Starring newcomer Vincent Lacoste and Reda Kateb (A Prophet & Zero Dark Thirty), Hippocrate tells the story of Benjamin, a boy who wants to become a great doctor, but will soon be forced to confront his limitations and fears after he goes to work in his father’s practice.

See also the New French Faces season

french film first exclusive

2 Autumns, 3 Winters

Vincent Macaigne plays the hirsute, self-effacing Arman, hoping to change his life at 33, when he literally bumps into Amélie. The first meeting is a shock to him; the second will be a stab in the heart. This comedy drama about love, chance and storytelling is comic and tender in equal measure.


Caught in the whirlwind of her disenchanted 17 years, Charlie develops a friendship with Sarah, the new girl. Their affinity quickly evolves from a breath of fresh air to an overwhelming and dangerous relationship. Mélanie Laurent’s second feature film is a disquieting portrayal of the potency of emotional conflict at teen-age.

The French Minister

Bertrand Tavernier’ adaptation of the hit graphic novel on French Foreign Affairs Minister (and later Prime Minister) Dominique de Villepin is a sparkling and savvy political comedy. Taking us for a breathless ride through the halls of French government, The French Minister follows a young new speechwriter (Raphaël Personnaz) as he joins the frantic entourage of the flamboyant French Foreign Secretary (Thierry Lhermite).

French Riviera

Based on real events in the 1970’s, including the unexplained disappearance of a Nice casino-owner’s daughter, André Téchiné’s latest film takes us in a deeply intriguing drama with a pleasingly teasing ambiguity from the motives of its three fiercely driven principals. In fending off her possibly shady business rivals, Renée Le Roux (Deneuve) greatly values the insightful advice of attorney Maurice Agnelet (Canet), while her recently divorced daughter Agnès (Haenel) finds him appealing for other reasons.

New French Faces

Along with the UK releases of The New Girlfriend, Les Combattants, Hippocrate and Eden that respectively bring on screen young actors such as Anaïs Demoustier, Reda Kateb, Raphaël Personnaz, Adèle Haenel and Vincent Lacoste, uncover a new generation of actors that were revealed within the last couple of years and that you haven’t heard the last of yet in a season dedicated to young and fresh faces of French Cinema.

The season will open with 2 French César 2015 Awardees, Pierre Niney as the title role in Yves Saint Laurent, and Adèle Haenel in French Riviera with Catherine Deneuve. Pairing up in Tavernier’s last feature, The French Minister, Anaïs Demoustier and Raphaël Personnaz also appear in The New Girlfriend. The two very young actresses, Lou de Laâge and Joséphine Japy face one another in Mélanie Laurent’s Breathe, while the ‘new Gérard Depardieu’, Vincent Macaigne, stars in 2 Autumns, 3 Winters.


Céline Sciamma continues her exploration of the effects of social conventions on delicately forming female identities in her triumphant third film. Sixteen-year-old Marieme (Karidja Touré) must navigate not only the disruptive onset of womanhood, but also the inequalities of being black and living in the underprivileged suburbs of Paris. Excluded from school and in fear of her overbearing brother at home, Marieme escapes into the shielding environment of a girl gang. With Girlhood Sciamma flawlessly evokes the fragile resilience of youth.

La Grande bouffe

Four world-weary middle-aged men (a pilot, a chef, a judge and a TV personality) decide to gorge themselves to death in one final orgiastic weekend of gluttony, wanton sex, and general hedonism. (Re)discover Ferreri’s scandalous blackly-comic satire of modern consumer society on a brand new print, released for the first time in the UK.

Et bien, dansez maintenant ! A Masterclass with Philippe Decouflé

There seems to be no end to Philippe Decouflé‘s popularity since his landmark opening ceremony for the 1992 Albertville Olympic Games which propelled him to international stardom. Choreographer, and director at times, swinging between arts and entertainment, he surprises us every time with his joyous and imaginative universe in constant motion. And so he will once again with Contact, his latest production paying tribute to musicals, held at Sadler’s Wells from 16-18 June.

Popping by Ciné Lumière on 15 June, this enfant terrible of dance will treat us with an exclusive masterclass, led by Harry Ross and illustrated with clips, spanning his 30-year hair-raising career.

In English | £12, conc. £10 | early reservation recommended | This event is not suitable for people aged under 15

Picture: Contact ® Laurent Philippe

dca-philippe-decoufle      sadlers-wells

A Nos Amours

This powerful exploration of the pain and the passion of adolescence features an outstanding performance from the young Bonnaire as a 15-year old girl seeking refuge from the tensions of family life in an almost wistful promiscuity.

Preceded by an introduction and followed by a Ciné Salon with Nick Walker

As part of French Leading Ladies. This week: Sandrine Bonnaire in A Nos Amours

Café Philo

Open to everyone interested in discussing philosophical issues in an informal setting, the Café Philo meets every Saturday.

10.30am to 12.15pm | £2


Bruce Brubaker Plays Philip Glass

With the exception perhaps of Glass himself, there is no finer interpreter of Philip Glass’s music in the world than Bruce Brubaker, a highly respected New York pianist who trained and now teaches at the Juilliard School. His new full-length take on Glass’s work, Glass Piano, is released in the UK on 2 June on InFiné/Warp and was recorded in Poitiers, France. This is the only UK date supporting the album.

Free but booking essential:


Yves Saint Laurent

Further confirming the apparently boundless talent of Comédie francaise actor Pierre Niney, Yves Saint Laurent traces the life of the precocious talent, who took over from his mentor, Christian Dior, in 1957, when he was only 21. Catapulted to international stardom, he took the world of fashion by storm with his attempts to democratise fashion against the backdrop of Sixties’ liberation, battling his personal demons to build an empire that would be renowned for liberating women all over the world. Rife with emotional insight into Yves Saint Laurent’s struggles against manic depressive spells and dependency on alcohol, drugs, and his partner Pierre Bergé – admirably played by Guillaume Gallienne – this film provides unique insight into the life of a man who shocked the world of couture and refused to succumb to his critics and self-doubt.

See also Yves Saint Laurent: A Fashion Revolutionary panel discussion at 7.00pm

Film: £10, conc. £8 | Talk + film: £12, conc. £10

Zola and Cinema

Since the early days of the cinema Zola’s novels have been a source of inspiration for successive directors, each offering their own, often highly personal, readings. A talk with Dr Russell Cousins (University of Birmingham).

In English | £3, free for members of the Emile Zola Society | Info & booking:

Yves Saint Laurent: A Fashion Revolutionary

Ahead of the first ever UK exhibition of Yves Saint Laurent this summer, this panel discussion will explore the life and legacy of Yves Saint Laurent. The panel will be chaired by the Editor of Christie’s Magazine and author Meredith Etherington-Smith in discussion with fashion critic Luke Leitch and the curator of fashion & textiles at The Bowes Museum, Joanna Hashagen.

In English | See also the screening of Yves Saint Laurent by Jalil Lespert at 8.30pm

Talk only: £8, conc. £6 | Talk + film: £12, conc. £10

Yves Saint Laurent: Style is Eternal will be on display at The Bowes Museum, County Durham from 11 July – 25 October

the-bowes-museum      fondation-pierre-berge-yves-saint-laurent

Photo: Marina Schiano wearing the short evening dress © The Estate of Jeanloup Sieff

From Soup to Silver: The Enduring Legacy of the Huguenots

The Duke of Buccleuch KBE – a descendant of Henri IV of France and King Charles II of England – will introduce his home Boughton House, ‘The English Versailles’, which becomes this summer the backdrop of The Montagus and the Huguenots, an exhibition celebrating the astonishing French legacy preserved there. This exhibition spotlights the treasures commissioned from Huguenot artists by his ancestor Ralph, 1st Duke of Montagu, Charles II’s ambassador to Louis XIV and the first great patron of those talented migrants.

A panel, chaired by Prof. Robert Tombs, with Prof. Dan Cruikshank, Dr Tessa Murdoch and Dr Bénédicte Miyamoto will focus on the surprising impact of this French cultural legacy.

In English | Free but booking essential:

The exhibition is part of a Huguenot Summer of over 80 events nationwide celebrating the extraordinary story of French migrancy.


A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Free Broadcast from the Festival of Aix-en-Provence

3 acts | music: Benjamin Britten | libretto: Benjamin Britten & Peter Pears, after Shakespeare | conductor: Kazushi Ono | stage director: Robert Carsen | orchestra: Lyon National Opera Orchestra | performers include: Sandrine Piau, Lawrence Zazzo, Miltos Yerolemou running time: 190 mins incl. 1 interval | sung in English

After a phenomenal success at the Aix-en-Provence Festival and worldwide in 1991 & 1992, Robert Carsen’s enchanting production of Britten’s operatic masterpiece returns to its birthplace, the courtyard of the Archevêché, where the summer nights are Provençal and dreams consumed al fresco.

Free but booking essential:

festival-aix-provence      fra-cinema      orange-fondation      cic

Picture: Le Songe d’une nuit d’été | Festival d’Aix-en-Provence 1991 © Pascal Victor / ArtcomArt

Madame Bovary

In 19th Century France, Emma Bovary, a farmer’s daughter brought up in an elegant convent, marries a dull country doctor. Full of romantic aspirations and dreams of luxury, she soon throws herself into love affairs to escape boredom. Claude Chabrol’s adaptation of Gustave Flaubert’s novel offered Isabelle Huppert one of her best roles.

Preceded by an introduction and followed by a Ciné Salon with Nick Walker

As part of French Leading Ladies. This week: Isabelle Huppert in Madame Bovary

The film will be screened on a rare 35mm print

L’été Meurtrier

Isabelle Adjani stars as Elle, a beautiful, moody and extremely feisty nineteen-year- old who returns to hometown in Provence to look after her ailing father and German mother. Initially, her arousing presence shakes up the usually quiet village, enthralling the young men; one, Pin Pon in particular. Using a shifting voice-over narration, an elaborate psychosexual mystery is woven which slowly uncovers Elle’s obsessions and her manipulative streak.

As part of French Leading Ladies. This week: Isabelle Adjani in L’été Meurtrier

Une femme est une femme

Godard’s delightful tribute to MGM musicals casts Brialy as a man whose stripper girlfriend (Karina, in an award- winning role) wants a baby. He is not keen, so she turns to his best friend (Belmondo).

Preceded by an introduction and followed by a Ciné Salon with Nick Walker

As part of French Leading Ladies. This week: Anna Karina in Une femme est une femme

The film will be screened on a rare 35mm print

Rocco and His Brothers

Rocco and His Brothers is the story of a family of Southern Migrants looking for a better life in Milan, a study in social realism that is not ashamed to turn into Greek tragedy. Luchino Visconti’s masterpiece offered Annie Girardot the role of a lifetime as Nadia, a harlot caught between two brothers, Rocco (Alain Delon) and Simone (Renato Salvatori).

As part of French Leading Ladies. This week: Annie Girardot in Rocco and His Brothers

The film will be screened on a rare 35mm print

The Dardennes: Early Works

For The War To End The Walls Should Have Crumbled

Pour que la guerre s’achève, les murs devaient s’écrouler

Looking back to the momentous events of Belgium’s general strike in 1960, the film focuses on the efforts of Edmond G. and colleagues at the Cockerill steel plant in Seraing to organise and secretly publish a workers’ newspaper between 1961 and 1969.

Lessons from a University on the Fly

Leçons d’une université volante

Filmed for television in 1982, this series of intimate portraits of Polish immigrants living in Belgium marks the beginning of the Dardennes’ interest in the lives of immigrants.

£12, conc. £10


I Am the People

Anne Roussillon’s I Am the People is the charming, funny and fascinating portrait of a family, far from Tahrir square in Egypt’s rural South, as they follow the Tahrir uprising via television news and local papers. From the toppling of President Mubarak to the election of Mohamed Morsi, the film charts their progression from amused distant observers of the events in Cairo through their increasing engagement and politicisation.

£12, conc. £10


Death of the Serpent God

Following a fight that ends badly, twenty-year-old Koumba is deported to Senegal. Having lived in France since early childhood, the troubled teenager now finds herself in a remote village, far from her family and Paris life. Director Damien Froidevaux spent five years charting Koumba’s journey as she viciously fights against the system and battles her own demons to take control of her own story again.

£12, conc. £10


Open City Documentary Festival

Open City Documentary Festival creates an open space in London to nurture and champion the art of creative documentary and non-fiction filmmakers – Read more



Anna is nervous when she and her son, Tomas, arrive in the small, close-knit community of Igloolik in the Canadian Arctic. Anna had a short-lived affair with Tomas’s Inuk father when she worked in Igloolik. But Tomas, now 14 years old, was born and raised in Montreal and never knew much about his origins. Over the course of two weeks, Anna and Tomas strive to rebuild the family they can no longer ignore. Shot entirely on location in Nunavut, Uvanga is a glimpse into the Arctic of today.

Followed by a Q&A with dir. Marie-Hélène Cousineau

£12, conc. £10

See also Standstill

As part of Origins Festival



Arihote is a Kanienkehaka ‘Mohawk’, and war photographer, whose relationship with his son Karhiio has been strained ever since his wife left them. His life takes an unexpected turn when he happens upon the aftermath of the murder of his upstairs neighbour. Filmed mainly in moody black and white, Standstill is provocative, intense and deeply moving.

Followed by a Q&A with Wampanoag scholar and artist Gabe Hughes and director Majdi El-Omari

£12, conc. £10

See also Uvanga

As part of Origins Festival


Camus Revisited: an Evening with Kamel Daoud

The Meursault Investigation by Kamel Daoud, winner of the Goncourt Prize for First Novel, is an attempt to do justice to ‘the Arab’ killed by the infamous Meursault, the antihero of Camus’s classic novel. On the occasion of its publication in the UK by OneWorld Publications, Kamel Daoud will debate questions raised by his book, from Arab identity in relation with the disastrous effects of colonialism in Algeria to Camus’s literary legacy. The event will be chaired by Jeremy Harding, from the London Review of Books.

In English

See also the screening of Quand Sisyphe se révolte, a documentary about Albert Camus at 7.15pm

Talk only: £5 | Talk + documentary: £8

Quand Sisyphe se révolte

Traveling through France, Algeria and Greece, young philosopher Marion Richez explores the Camus ‘myth’ with interviews of intelectual figures such as Edgar Morin and Robert Badinter or Camus’s own daughter Catherine. This documentary highlights how essential Camus’s thinking was, and how it can still reflect on the major questions of our society.

See also Camus Revisited: An Evening with Kamel Daoud, a talk at 6.15pm

Documentary only: £5 | Talk + Documentary: £8

Abderrahmane Sissako: Short Films

Programme total length: 120 mins

To complement the Abderrahmane Sissako retrospective at the BFI Southbank, Ciné Lumière is screening a programme of his short films rarely seen on the big screen. The Game (1989), October (1992) and Rostov-Luanda (1997) are the first films he directed and are representative of Sissako’s political engagement which culminates in his latest feature Timbuktu.

See also Timbuktu


The Tribe

Spotted in Cannes 2014 where it was awarded Grand Prix de la Semaine de la Critique, The Tribe is a fascinating silent film contrasted by explicit sign language and violence. Deaf mute Sergey becomes embroiled in the illegal activities of the fearsome gang that rule the specialised boarding school he attends. His burgeoning love for a fellow student however, soon leads him on a collision course with the gang’s hierarchy.

Les Combattants

Thomas Cailley’s remarkable film featuring a sparkling onscreen chemistry between its two young leads took the top prize at Directors’ Fortnight during Cannes 2014. Arnaud’s summer looks set to be a peaceful one until he runs into Madeleine (Adèle Haenel, in a Best Actress César award performance), beautiful as she is brusque, a concrete block of tensed muscles and doomsday prophecies.

See also the New French Faces season


Between the years 1949 and 1990 roughly four million people left the GDR for West Germany. The film shows the interrogations conducted by the Allied secret services, which turned the Emergency Refugee Centre into a cold war location. With great personal and political power, West shows the difficulties of daring to start a new life – when the past has taken away all faith in the future.

The Connection

Marseille, 1975. Young investigating magistrate Pierre Michel embarks on a personal crusade against Gaëtan Zampa, an iconic underworld figure from the French Connection, a mafia organisation that exports heroin around the world. A high-octane and stylish crime drama boasting powerful performances from Gilles Lellouche and Oscar winner Jean Dujardin.

Le Vertige

In Petrograd. Out of jealousy, the General Count Svirsky kills his wife’s lover, Dimitrieff. Knowing what her husband did, Countess Svirska remains faithfull to him as they escape the Russian Revolution to the French Riviera. This rare film featuring decor by Robert Mallet-Stevens, furnishings by Pierre Chareau and Robert Delaunay and costumes designed by Sonia Delaunay, is presented on the occasion of the EY Exhibition: Sonia Delaunay at Tate Modern.


The film will be screened on a rare 35mm print.

© Marie-Ange l’Herbier / Restauration CNC

Gett – The Trial of Vivianne Amsalem

A riveting drama from Ronit Elkabetz, who is also one of Israeli cinema’s most acclaimed actresses, and her brother Shlomi. Gett tells the story of Viviane’s five- year fight to obtain her divorce in front of the only legal authority competent for divorce cases in Israel, the Rabbinical Court. Viviane faces the uncompromising attitude of her husband, who refuses the divorce (gett) even though they’ve been separated for years.

As part of SERET, London Israeli Film & Television Festival


Documenting Nazi Atrocities

Early Films on the Liberation of the Camps – The French contribution

Right after the liberation of Germany, the Allied programme of ‘re-education’ aimed to confront the German population with their responsibility for the rise of National Socialism and its extermination policies. In this series of films that document the liberation of the camps and bear witness to the atrocities committed by the Nazis, we present the ‘official’ French film Le Camp de la mort (1945) as well as the more personal films Night and Fog by Alain Resnais (1955/56) and Henchman Glance (2010) by Chris Marker.

Programme total length: 85 mins | £8, conc. £6

Preceded by an introduction by Prof. Sylvie Lindeperg (University of Paris 1 Panthéon Sorbonne)

In collaboration with the Goethe-Institut London, IWM London (Imperial War Museums), the University of Essex, and Queen Mary, University of London.

For other screenings in the Documenting Nazi Atrocities series please visit the Goethe-Institut website.

Goethe Institute

Fermeture Médiathèque

On Mon 18 May & Tue 19 May, Ciné Lumière, la Médiathèque & the Children’s Library will be closed to the public. Therefore, the cultural centre will be closed to the public from 7.30pm. We apologise for the inconvenience.

Understanding the Arab Counter-Revolution

How to explain the failure of the Arab uprisings that brought so much hope to the Middle East? Which circumstances gave such a power to the Arab counter-revolution that surprises most observers today? In his disturbing and timely book From Deep State to Islamic State (Hurst), Jean-Pierre Filiu, Professor of Middle East Studies at Sciences Po in Paris, lays bare the strategies and tactics employed by the Middle Eastern autocracies. Sharing his discoveries, Jean-Pierre Filiu will give a talk, seeking to unravel this complex and violent reality.

Free | in English | 7pm – 8pm | Booking essential:

Crédit visuel : Samuel Aranda


Winner of 7 César awards, Timbuktu confirms Sissako’s status as one of the true humanists of contemporary cinema. Not far from Timbuktu, now ruled by the religious fundamentalists, Kidane lives peacefully in the dunes with his family and their twelve-year-old shepherd. Back in the city, the people suffer from the regime of terror imposed by the Jihadists determined to control their faith. Music, laughter, cigarettes, even soccer have been banned.

Preview screening with writer and producer Kessen Tall

Other screenings: May – June 2015

Shubbak Festival 2015

Ciné Lumière is delighted to host a selection of films from Shubbak Festival, a window on contemporary Arab culture.

The celebrated Palestinian director Michel Khleifi is 65 this year and Shubbak has invited him to mark this occasion by curating the festival’s main film programme: a themed, personal selection from his own films in dialogue with works of Arab and European cinema. Spread across three venues, the season explores representations of Palestine and the Arab in European cinema, as well as the struggle for the emancipation of women.



This critically acclaimed family drama from the multi-award winning Tunisian director Abdellatif Kechiche (Blue is the Warmest Colour) follows 60-year old shipyard worker Slimane Beiji as he attempts to realise his dream of converting a dilapidated boat into a family restaurant specialising in fish couscous. However, the odds appear to be stacked against him: financial difficulties, state bureaucracy and an unruly extended family.

Followed by a panel discussion on representation of the Arab in European Cinema

Part of Representations of the Arab in European Cinema Strand

Wedding in Galilee

The first Palestinian film to appear at the Cannes Film Festival, where it won the International Critics’ Prize in 1987, Wedding in Galilee tells the story of Abu Adil, the mayor of a Galilean village, who is determined to celebrate his son’s wedding with all the traditional Palestinian fanfare. The village is under an Israeli military imposed curfew, which means that Abu Adil also must invite the military governor…

Followed by a Q&A with director Michel Khleifi