The Guardians | Les Gardiennes
Date: Wednesday, April 25th, 2018
Location: Bow Tie Squire Cinemas (115 Middle Neck Road, Great Neck)
Xavier Beauvois | France | French w/ English Sub. | 135min | Narrative
An affecting human drama of love, loss, and resilience unfolds against the backdrop of World War I. The women of the Paridier farm, under the deft hand of Hortense, the family’s matriarch (Nathalie Baye), must grapple with the workload while the men, including two sons, are off at the front. Hortense reluctantly brings on an outsider, the hard-scrabble teenage orphan, Francine (Iris Bry), to help her daughter Solange (Laura Smet, Ms. Baye’s real-life daughter). New tools allow the women to triumph over the land, newfound independence is acquired, yet emotions are stirred especially when the men return from the front on short leaves.
Director Xavier Beauvois revels in the mysteries and beauties of the French countryside, here unravaged by war, with painterly images bathed in natural light, yet keeps his focus on the intricate drama that plays out against the upheaval of the Great War.
SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKER: Delphine Selles-Alvarez
Before joining FIAF (French Institute Alliance Française) as its film curator in May 2013, Delphine Selles-Alvarez was the film program officer at the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in New York. In that capacity, she worked with US film institutions, museums, micro-cinemas and universities across the United States to bring French and Francophone cinema to their audience with film retrospectives and US visits of French filmmakers. She served on the jury of the Mercorel Prize at the 2010 Cinéma du Réel, one of France’s most important documentary festival in France. Delphine Selles-Alvarez is a member of the film selection committee of the Tournées Festival, a grant-giving program that supports the screening of French films on university campuses. She also serves on the board of the film distribution company Big World Pictures (Stop the Pounding Heart, Curling, A Summer’s Tale, Aferim), and is the co-curator of Animation First, New York’s new festival of French Animation.