Every year, about 100 documentaries are released in French theaters. COLCOA is proud to introduce in Hollywood four high-profile new French films, which will compete for the 2018 COLCOA Best Documentary Award chosen by the audience. This line-up reflects the dynamism and the diversity of current documentary production in France.
All films are in English or presented with English subtitles.
Tuesday, April 24 – 5:45PM – Truffaut Theater
Los Angeles Premiere • 96 min • France, 2017
“Makala” means charcoal in Swahili. But this solemn, restrained documentary is not about words. It is almost silent. It is the simple story of Kasongo, a 28-year-old man who dreams of building a home for his wife and daughters. To do so, he fells a colossal tree, turns it into charcoal, stuff it into colossal bags, precariously loads them onto a rickety bicycle, then — Sisyphus-like — pushes his load up a colossal hill, through clouds of dust and exhaust fumes, to market. Emmanuel Gras’ exquisitely photographed, existential film, a loving ode to one man’s resolve and backbreaking labor, is said to be the first documentary ever selected
Thursday April 26 – 5:45PM – Truffaut Theater
West Coast Premiere • 67 min • France, 2017
“I lived… we all lived with a ghost,” says director Éric Caravaca in the voiceover narration of his deeply moving, poetic film, Plot 35. The “ghost” is that of the sister he never knew. He never even knew she existed. Christine, who died at three, before he and his brother were born. Stranger still, his mother burned every photograph and home movie the child appeared in. Reeling from that discovery, Caravaca sets out to investigate the truth and try to find out why Christine’s death was so shameful that his parents chose to methodically erase her entire existence. The resulting film is a fascinating, fearless look — not into the grave at plot 35, but into the heartbreaking, dysfunctional nature of family secrets and lies.
Saturday April 28 – 10:15PM – Truffaut Theater
Los Angeles Premiere | France / Germany / Qatar | 2017 | Documentary | 85 min | In French and Dari with English subtitles
“Hollywood, Bollywood, Nothingwood!” proclaims Salim Shaheen. He has been called the “Afghan Ed Wood” and is certainly the war-torn country’s most popular and prolific actor/director/producer. Launching production on his 111th B-movie masterpiece, the exuberant filmmaker travels to a remote village to shoot with his usual ragtag crew of friends, actors, war veterans and his perennial cross-dressing “leading lady.” Armed with a small video camera, a few Kalashnikovs and a box of live ammo, it’s “lights, camera, action!”
Sunday April 30 – 1:30 pm – Truffaut Theater
Los Angeles Premiere • 121 min • France, 2017
What makes virtuoso chef Alain Ducasse tick? How did that little boy who grew up on a farm in southwestern France become an innovative, sustainability-conscious culinary master, with 23 restaurants on different continents, 18 Michelin stars and three cooking schools to his name? Gilles de Maistre endeavored to find out, following his fascinating subject across the globe for almost two years, in his indefatigable search for perfection. And if this film offers any rationale for Ducasse’s brilliance, it is certainly his endless curiosity, humanity, energy and passion for learning, sniffing, tasting, and eking out the most exquisite of ingredients and flavors.