Tokyo art houses have a selection of French films this autumn that illustrate the range of the nation’s cinema—from seminal masterpieces to raunchy comedies. One of the lesser-studied figures in the New Wave movement, Jacques Rozier, is the subject of a retrospective running through November 18 at Image Forum in Shibuya (2-10-2 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku; www.imageforum.co.jp) One highlight is the rarely-screened but influential Adieu Philippine (1962), a coming-of-age tale about a young soldier about to be shipped off to Algeria and the two girls he spends the summer with on the island of Corsica.
There will be cinema to savor with the vineyard-set family drama First Growth (Premiers crus), on from November 19 at Bunkamura’s Le Cinema (2-24-1 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku; www.bunkamura.co.jp). It focuses on Charlie, the publisher of a successful wine guide who has no practical experience, that is not until his father’s vineyard in Burgundy faces bankruptcy.
Lucile Hadzihalilovic’s beautifully-shot atmospheric, meditative horror film Evolution is set on an idyllic island populated only by women and children, until one day something comes out of the sea. On from November 26 at Cinema Qualite (3-37-12 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku; qualite.musashino-k.jp).
And proving that France can crank out comedies just as silly as Hollywood fare is the recent mega-hit All Gone South (a.k.a. Babysitting 2). Presented largely in “found footage,” it chronicles the disastrous vacation of a dim-witted guy and his bros escaping Paris for the jungles of Brazil. On from November 19 at Cinemart (3-8-15 Roppongi, Minato-ku; www.cinemart.co.jp/theater/shinjuku/) and Human Trust Cinema Shibuya (Cocoti Bldg.7,8F 1-23-16, Shibuya-ku; www.ht-cinema.com).