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Film at Lincoln Center and The Museum of Modern Art announce the return of New Directors/New Film

Image: Twelve Thousand by Nadège Trebal

Film at Lincoln Center and The Museum of Modern Art announce the return of the 49th annual New Directors/New Films (ND/NF), rescheduled from March for December 9-20

Throughout its rich, nearly half-century history, the festival has celebrated filmmakers who represent the present and anticipate the future of cinema, and whose daring work pushes the envelope in unexpected ways. This year’s festival will introduce 24 features and 10 shorts virtually to audiences nationwide, with films scheduled over the course of 12 days and screening exclusively in the FLC Virtual Cinema.

The 2020 lineup boasts numerous standouts from the international film festival circuit, showcasing top award-winners from Rotterdam, Locarno, Venice, and Sundance.

Virtual tickets are $12, and go on sale on Monday, November 23 at noon. Members of Film at Lincoln Center and MoMA and students save an additional 20% on individual rentals and the all-access bundle. Additional details about the festival and special screenings to be available on newdirectors.org.

This year's selection includes the following 4 French films and co-productions: 

Twelve Thousand by Nadège Trebal
France, 2019, 111m
French with English subtitles
In her fiction debut, which she also wrote and co-stars in, French documentary filmmaker Nadège Trebal masters a series of radical tonal shifts for a wildly entertaining, sexually unapologetic portrait of a couple contending with economic instability and the fight to maintain equality in their relationship. In a star-is-born performance, the magnetic Arieh Worthalter is down-on-his-luck charmer Frank, who, after being fired from his black-market scrapyard job, enters into an agreement with his partner, Maroussia (Trebal), to earn exactly 12,000 euros, the amount that would equal her annual income. Throughout Frank’s journey, which is occasionally absurdist and fraught with perilous seductions, both financial and sexual, Trebal never loses sight of the very real pressures that capital puts on contemporary lives.

Los conductos by Camilo Restrepo
France/Colombia/Brazil, 2020, 70m
Spanish with English subtitles
A former criminal and cult member living under cloak of night in the crevices and corners of the Colombian city of Medellín makes his way back into civilization, yet is gripped by a shadowy past, in this fragmented first feature from Camilo Restrepo. After his memorable shorts Cilaos and La bouche, the director proves his mastery at economical yet expansive storytelling here, taking a complex narrative about the possibility of regeneration within a society all too willing to discard its outcasts and boiling it down to a series of precise shots, sounds, and gestures of off-handed beauty. A Grasshopper Film release. 

Days of Cannibalism by Teboho Edkins
France/South Africa/Netherlands, 2020, 78m
English, Sesotho, Fujianese, and Mandarin with English subtitles
South Africa-raised filmmaker Teboho Edkins’s remarkable documentary begins in the Chinese port city of Guangzhou, following the daily movements of a young African man trying to make a living working in a hotel; soon the film moves to Lesotho, a mountainous, landlocked region in the middle of South Africa, where a group of Chinese migrants have recently settled seeking their own economic stability and are living uneasily beside the rural community’s cattle ranchers. Edkins situates his subjects as though in a fictional narrative, privileging us to bear witness to their lives and minute interactions even as they become players in a story of an emerging and competitive global trade relationship. This expansive and immersive work of nonfiction redefines the rules of the “western” genre.

Two of Us by Filippo Meneghetti
France/Luxembourg/Belgium, 2019, 95m
French with English subtitles
In his intensely moving middle-aged queer romance, first-time feature filmmaker Filippo Meneghetti casts Martine Chevallier and the legendary Barbara Sukowa as Madeleine and Nina, two women who live in the same apartment building and have been carrying on a love affair in secret for decades. Now that Madeleine’s husband has died, Nina encourages her to tell the truth about their relationship to her meddlesome, selfish grown children, hoping they can move to Rome together. As in any great melodrama (Sukowa’s work with Fassbinder is here never far out of mind), the cruel vicissitudes of society and fate get in the way; yet as their romantic dreams become more distant, their desperate love grows ever stronger. A Magnolia Pictures release.