Need some great summer flicks to lift your mood amidst the COVID-19 pandemic? This July, keep your eyes glued to your screens, as the Singapore French Summer Festival makes its debut online! Organised by the Embassy of France in Singapore, in partnership with Shaw Organisation, the festival runs from 14th to 31st July on Shaw Theatres’ newly launched digital platform – KinoLounge by Shaw Theatres, and will feature a lineup of 16 films from France.
These films comprise 8 recently released French films that have never before been screened in Singapore, along with some other popular titles from recent years. Aimed at showcasing the diversity of French cinema, the festival opens with The Lost Prince by Michel Hazanavicus, director of Academy Award-winning film The Artist and starring Omar Sy (The Untouchables). The film is a modern day fairy tale featuring Sy as Djibi, a devoted single father whose life revolves around his 7-year old daughter Sofia.
Another highlight to look out for would be Alice Winocour’s Proxima, which highlights the relationship between single mother Sarah (Eva Green) and her daughter, when Sarah joins a year long space mission as the only female astronaut, leading to fractures in their mother-daughter relationship.
If you’re in need of a laugh, look out for comedy films such as The Best Is Yet To Come, where Patrick Bruel and Fabrice Luchini star as two old friends bonding with each other after a monumental misunderstanding to make up for lost time. Or in Meet the Malawas, four exceptional guests are invited to an unknown, exotic destination and come face to face with the Malawas, one of the most isolated tribes in the world.
In The Lion, a psychiatrist becomes fascinated with a patient claiming to be an international spy, while in Mohamed Hamdi’s Queens of the Field, a city’s football team is disqualified, and a new team comprising completely of women is formed to defend the city’s colours.
Families can come together to enjoy films such as Nicolas Vanier’s Spread Your Wings, where a father and son go on an adventure to save an endangered species of white-fronted geese. Meanwhile, animated film The Bears’ Famous Invasion of Sicily by Lorenzo Mattotti tells of a great bear king who leads his clan down from the mountains and into the world of men to find his long lost son.
Other animated favourites that will be making their way into the festival include Ballerina, The Son of Bigfoot, and The Big Bad Fox and Other Tales, as well as films such as Christophe Gans’ The Beauty and the Beast (with Vincent Cassel and Lea Seydoux), and Julien Rappeneau’s Of Love and Lies, which tells of the touching story of a 12 year old boy who will do anything and everything to make his depressed father happy again.
“The creative industries have taken many innovative initiatives to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Singapore French Summer Festival illustrates the deep-rooted cultural ties between France and Singapore, partners in happy times as well as in more challenging times. As the world’s borders are still waiting to open up, we are glad that this festival will allow the public to travel and wander in different realities and cultures,” says Marc Abensour, Ambassador of France to Singapore.
Says Christopher Shaw, Senior Vice-president at Shaw Organisation: “Amidst the challenges presented by the current crisis, we launched KinoLounge by Shaw Theatres, a special interactive space for film lovers to experience curated quality films not accessible elsewhere. Patrons will also be able to attend ‘live’ sessions with filmmakers and cast as an added bonus.”
“France is a top travel destination for Singaporeans, and with the current closed borders, we wish to offer the public the chance to enjoy the sights and sounds of France via the best of French cinema this summer holiday season. The start of the first Singapore French Summer Festival has been chosen to coincide on the 14th of July, on the occasion of the French National Day and in the frame of our collaboration with the Embassy of France,” adds Christopher.
The Singapore French Summer Festival runs from 14th to 31st July 2020 online at KinoLounge. For more information, visit their website here