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France Takes Home Two Awards at the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

In the International Feature Film competition, the film Félicité, directed by Alain Gomis, was awarded the Silver Hugo Jury Prize. Félicité, from Senegal, France, and Belgium, transports its audience to a vividly evoked community in Kinshasa, without indulging the stereotypes by which Africa is often depicted on screen. Instead, we meet a tenacious, complex heroine who insists on living by her own terms, even amid situations that deprive her of easy choices. The music in the movie is unforgettable, and its structure is itself musical, building in unexpected movements, interludes, and crescendos toward its rewarding conclusion.

As part of the LGBTQ-themed Out-Look competition, director Robin Campillo’s film BPM (120 battements par minute), took home the Gold Q-Hugo Award for its necessary honesty, unmatched portrayal of love and loss, but most importantly for embodying what it really means to make the personal political. 

Directed by: Alain Gomis, 2017
Starring: Véro Tshanda Beya Mputu, Gaetan Claudia, Papi Mpaka
Runtime: 123 minutes
In French and Lingala with English subtitles

BPM (120 battements par minute) 
Directed by: Robin Campillo, 2017
Starring: Nahuel Pérez Biscayart, Arnaud Valois, Adèle Haenel
Runtime: 144 minutes
In French with English subtitles