Our showcase of international genre cinema, within the framework of the Festival of 3 Continents, takes into account two ongoing pledges: first our commitment to bear witness of our attachment to a certain idea of cinema of which genre is a pillar, second to carry on our mission by offering a cutting-edge overview of genre as practiced in southern countries. We are talking about films that are never given the appreciation they deserve except in some very specialized festivals.
It goes without saying that genre movies suffer from a priori, which readily rejects them to the outskirts of art. Genres play a key role in how moviegoer perceive and rate films and is likely to détermine a film production values and costs. We must admit that the commercial value of a film is sometimes enough to rise suspicion and it would be useless to deny in block the relevance of this argument but it is advisable to seize it down with an effort on nuances.
Comedies, science fiction, fantasy, action, adventures and thriller films, that occupy the top spots at international box-office are itinerant, travelers that can transport accurate social and political references and very local codes of representation. Their circulation supposes pitching to a wide audience and an often lore spontaneous cinema in opposition to the acculturating American model. Film after film, on the basis of a fundamental and specific coding system (intrigues, characters, sets, key-scenes, formal actions, etc.) the audience finds a full range of familiar issues that it can refer to, in order to get the lay of the land – one looks at genre evolution as one takes the pulse of a long time friend.
By observing the repetitions and especial torsions which these reference marks are likely to undergo from one film to another, and to keep up a rich field of work on genre from one cultural space to another, our ambition would be to characterize genre and highlight what are its various functions in the southern countries: In what ways does genre give a film its identity, and also to understand up to what point genre films since the beginning of classic Hollywood cinema, remain an active ground of thought and formal creativity. To our understanding genre offers a real opportunity to grasp cultural significance across national boundaries and takes into account genre expectation for both an enthusiastic audience and the most adventurous film fans.
«À l’heure du genre» is a wide range invitation to discover science fiction, fantasy, action, adventure and scary films; some in premiere before their national film release, others that had simply been deprived of a large theater screen until now.
Our audience already has a date with a sentimental gangster, a bunch of lost cops in Hong Kong, a rebel amongst rebels, a very irritated ghost that lives in Thailand, a nightmare adventurer, a few gallons of blood, some really creepy scenes and even, the very first but not least mythical Pakistani zombies…
Jérôme Baron et Jean-Philippe Tessé