History Docs

ANDRÉ BRINK, THE AFRICAN    
Directed by Jean-Marc Giri and Jean-Marc Bouzou
(Veilleur de Nuit Production, 2011)


Once Nelson Mandela had become president, he said to Brink: "When I was in prison, you changed the way I viewed the world"". André Brink is well known for his novel "A Dry White Season", which won France's Medicis foreign book prize in 1982.
But who is the man behind this powerful oeuvre, of which one or two novels very probably helped change the course of History? André Brink's life is interwoven with the history of South Africa, from the establishment of apartheid to the present day. His life was one of struggle. He lived an artist's life to the full - involving women, travel and important encounters, and a major part of post-1950 intellectual life. Albert Camus was his model and May 68, a determining experience.

With him, we explore the issues of how he managed to free himself from the conservative ""Boer"" values of his childhood, and how he resisted the temptation of a comfortable exile in Paris, returning instead to the lion's den, writing subversive novels."  

English version available     
Format:
1x43'    
Cost: $250      
Contact: ARTE SALES (France), Anne VOIRIN, a-voirin@artefrance.fr


ANGKOR REDISCOVERED
Directed by Frederic Wilner
(Iliade Productions, 2013)

        
How did Angkor become the largest, 13th century city ever built?
 Using the most sophisticated technologies in conjunction with research focusing on statues, casts, and documents handed down by Louis Delaporte - one of the first explorers of Angkor in the 19th century - researchers have been able to uncover how Khmer temples operated, the meaning of their architecture, and how the capital of the Empire grew to become the largest city in the world at the end of the 13th century."    

English version available     
Format:
1x52' ou 1x90'
Cost: $250      
Contact: ARTE SALES (France), Anne VOIRIN, a-voirin@artefrance.fr                


BERLIN 1885 : THE DIVISION OF AFRICA     
Directed by Joël Calmettes
(Les Films d'ici, 2010)    
    

26th February 1884. Scenes of joy at the Radziwill Palace in Berlin to celebrate the end of negotiations at the Berlin Conference on Africa, which had lasted for four months. During these four months, the leading diplomats of the Western world had determined the future of Africa, dividing it up into areas of influence and drawing borders at random. Yet not a single African had been asked for their opinion!

Still almost entirely terra incognita, Africa was at the mercy of European geopolitics. It had aroused the lust of many, in particular Leopold II, King of Belgium, who by shrewd lobbying during the Conference managed to win the vast state of the Congo for his kingdom (and would soon own it outright).

The negotiating table was the scene of both power struggles and human comedy. Each country lauded its own altruistic values, invoked the white man's mission to bring civilisation to the Africans, or cloaked itself in other good intentions.

Yet the bald facts continue to speak louder than their words, and Africa still bears their scars.
This documentary makes use of previously unexplored archive material and the insights of historians specialised in the colonial question to shed new light on this period of history at the end of the 19th century that would seal the fate of an entire continent for many years to come.
    
English version available     
Format:
1X90'  
Cost: Contact Films Media Group  (US)   
Contact: Films Media Group  (US)
Customer Service: custserv@films.com                   


BUILDER'S CHALLENGE - STRASBOURG CATHEDRALE     
Directed by Marc Jampolsky
(Seppia, 2012)    
    

The epic history, in 3D, of Strasbourg Cathedral and its outstanding builders. A fascinating docudrama, from start to finish.

Strasbourg Cathedral, a gothic jewel and the highest monument in the West until the 19th century, was both an excessive dream and an architectural feat. How, in the Middle Ages, was such a wonder made possible?

Behind its elegant, pink sandstone façade and its famous rose window, which is set ablaze at sunset, three centuries of visionary and inspired master-builders followed on from one another - Erwin de Steinbach, Ulrich d'Ensingen and Jean Hültz - as did craftsmen with a savoir-faire that was envied all over Europe. They return here in fiction form. An epic blending mystery, doubt, revelations, intrigue and tragedies."    

English version available     
Format:
1x52'
Cost: $250  
Contact: ARTE SALES (France), Anne VOIRIN, a-voirin@artefrance.fr


INDIA'S DESTINY     
Directed by Laurent Jaoui
(Alegria, 2012)     
   

The history of contemporary India (from Independence until today) through the life stories of three generations of an Indian middle class family, confronted with the haunting pending question of the underclass. The stake is to understand the evolution of a society centered on the high public service legacy of the former colonial power, up to the development of a merging power based on private initiative. How will democratic India face all these challenges?  

English version available    
Format: 1x94'
Cost: $250     
Contact: ARTE SALES (France), Anne VOIRIN, a-voirin@artefrance.fr"        


A SPY IN LOVE     
Directed by Nicolas Jallot
(Ladybirds Films, 2012) 
       

In January 1964, President Charles de Gaulle announces the French Government is recognizing the People's Republic of China. A month later, France becomes the first Western power to open an embassy in Beijing since the Korean War and 20-year-old Bernard Boursicot arrives to serve as French embassy accountant.June 30, 1983. On a busy commercial street in Paris, French Secret Service arrests Boursicot together with his wife, the Bejing opera singer Shi Pei Pu. The ordinary civil servant is in reality a spy who worked for Chinese Intelligence for the last 20 years. But this is not the whole story: The same day, Boursicot is told that his wife with whom he lived for twenty years is ... a man! Overnight, the incredible story is catapulted on international stage. It will inspire David Henry Hwang to write M. Butterfly, a hit Broadway play, and David Cronenberg to direct a movie of the same title, starring Jeremy Irons and John Lone. But the real story was never told, both Shi Pei Pu and Boursicot always refused to explain...    

English version available    
Format: 1x52'    
Cost: $250  
Contact: ARTE SALES (France), Anne VOIRIN, a-voirin@artefrance.fr


KOFI ANNAN'S SUSPENDED DREAM
Directed by Pascal Vasselin
(Alegria, 2010)  
 

His Ghanian childhood seems to have equipped him with unfailing morals and a spirit of optimism. When he entered the UN in the 1960s, he dreamt of serving the major causes of the UN charter - Human Rights, development and the collective security organisation. Subsequent events in his life unhinged those dreams.

In the 1990s, Kofi Annan led the Blue Helmets on their impossible peace-keeping missions. His ideal back then was violently challenged by a few of the most terrible chapters in contemporary History - in Somalia, Rwanda and Bosnia. He witnessed - over-passively in the view of his critics - the most serious of crimes, overburdened by his powerlessness to prevent them.
His two terms of office at the head of the UN were largely spent erecting ""ramparts against Evil"" he says, and were a quest to give Humanity the means to ""counter-attack"". They were a diplomatic struggle at the summit of power, in which the law was often dictated by national selfishness. He suffered a personal ordeal, too, when he came under suspicion of corruption.
Throughout his account, Kofi Annan's vision of mankind is characterised by a stubborn confidence. Although his dream has been ""suspended"" by History from time to time, it is alive and well…"   

English version available    
Format:1x52'    
Cost: $250  
Contact: ARTE SALES (France), Anne VOIRIN, a-voirin@artefrance.fr                     


MARIE CURIE, BEYOND THE MYTH     
Directed by Michel Vuillermet      
(Les Films d'un Jour, 2011)


From her birth in Varsaw until she entered the Pantheon, the works and life of Marie Curie are like a myth. While she has been honored in the entire world and embodies a model of excellence, her story and her life remain unknown.

In order to celebrate this amazing woman of science, and on the occasion of her Nobel Prize in December 2011, we propose a portrait of Marie Curie who, at the dawn of the 20th century, participated to the revolution of physics, subverted our conception of the world and of matter through her works on radioactivity.

To draw a portrait of this outstanding scientist, the Curie Museum unveils its archives, including some unreleased materials.
Through her diaries and correspondence, and thanks to the numerous testimonies Marie Curie left behind, we want to meet the discreet and combative woman she used to be. We will retrace her amazing journey through the prism of her emotions and thoughts. 

English version available    
Format:1x52'    
Cost: Contact Films Media Group  (US)
Contact: Films Media Group  (US)
Customer Service: custserv@films.com       


THE WORLD ACCORDING TO MICHELIN
Directed by Bertrand de Solliers and Paule Muxel
(Julianto Films, 2011)


The rise of Michelin, the living symbol of a company that embodies the history of 19th century independent capitalism, and which has always bounced back in the face of change.
The film takes us to the heart of a veritable human saga, an industrial history of innovation and invention, responding to economic, technical and social change. Its fascinating history has not only shaped a city but also numerous destinies.  The history portrays the Michelin family's closeness to their employees, to the point of almost becoming the models of a philosophy. Their history is inextricably linked to that of the 20th century.

English version available    
Format: 1x52'    
Cost: Contact Films Media Group  (US)
Contact: Films Media Group  (US)
Customer Service:  custserv@films.com


AN APPOINTMENT WITH LACAN
Directed by Gerard Miller
(PMP, Penelope - Morgane Productions, 2011)      
 

This film about the psychoanalyst and psychiatrist Lacan takes a look at his day-to-day life, through alternating accounts from his patients, pupils, and close friends and family.
Born at the turn of the 20th century into a bourgeois Catholic family, Lacan had an encyclopaedic knowledge and trained as a psychiatrist. He was friendly with Picasso, Lévi-Strauss and Sartre. But despite being a brilliant psychoanalyst, and an outstanding practitioner and theorist, his own colleagues excommunicated him, treating him as though he were the devil.
Filmmaker Gérard Miller was still in lycée when he first met Lacan. At the age of twenty, his elder brother Jacques-Alain Miller became one of Lacan's most loyal pupils. A few years later, Jacques-Alain married Lacan's daughter Judith. 45 years on, Gérard Miller still feels the same way about Lacan: "Lacan was an absolutely incredible man. I have made this film so as many people as possible can know about him!""
Today, Lacan is considered the most modern, most stimulating, and even the most controversial of psychoanalysts. Watching the documentary, viewers will see for themselves that he entirely deserves his reputation.
    
English version available    
Format: 1x52'    
Cost: $250      
Contact: ARTE SALES (France), Anne VOIRIN, a-voirin@artefrance.fr


RETURN TO THE CAUCASUS   
Directed by Jean-Pierre Devillers
and Stephane Bergouhnioux
(B-TWEEN, 2013)     
   

In 1858, Alexandre Dumas set out on the roads of the Caucasus and reported on them in his ""Voyage to the Caucasus"". In 2012, Gérard Depardieu carries out the same journey, noting new borders and focusing on Azerbaijan.
 He visits the same towns the writer visited. At the time, Dumas was accompanied by the painter Jean Pierre Moynet, who painted everything that inspired him on their travels, from encounters with people, to unusual places to the adventures they experienced.
Gérard Depardieu is accompanied by artist Mathieu Sapin, our present-day Moynet.
 Throughout his journey Gérard Depardieu talks to us about Dumas, about Depardieu and about his perspective on the world. Gérard and Mathieu meet local men and women, just like the writer did in his day. Dumas is no longer with us, but Depardieu is there to bring him back to life. And perhaps Dumas helps reveal a side to Depardieu that we have never seen before.    

English version available    
Format: 1x52'    
Cost: $250      
Contact: ARTE SALES (France), Anne VOIRIN, a-voirin@artefrance.fr              


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