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French Films Screen at University Village

French Film Series Scheduled at University Village Cinemas

UC Riverside organizes the annual event

(February 27, 2007)

An image from the film, L’Esquive/ Games of Love and Chance

An image from the film, L’Esquive/ Games of Love and Chance

RIVERSIDE, Calif. ( — Fans of independent and foreign film will have a chance to see a free film, “L’Esquive/ Games of Love and Chance” (Abdel Kechiche, 2003)at 7:30 p.m. tonight, Feb. 27, at the University Village Cinemas, 1201 University Ave., Riverside.

This is the final film in the UC Riverside French film festival.

Feb. 27 -- “L’Esquive/ Games of Love and Chance” (Abdel Kechiche, 2003) is set in a bleak suburban housing project, following a group of teenagers, poor and immigrant for the most part. Many are involved in a class production of Marivaux’s 18th-century classic “Les jeux de l’amour et du hasard.” The rehearsals, both in and out of the classroom, are often the stage for their daily interactions. Although “Games of Love and Chance” reveals a lot about France’s multiethnic youth culture, the film is almost more about the French language juxtaposing the teenagers’ multi-ethnic slang and the polished rhetoric of the 18th century.” It earned Best Film, Best Director, Most Promising Actress (Sara Forestier), at the César Awards.

About this film, filmmaker Abdel Kechiche said:

"I wanted to show a different way of looking at kids in the projects. Everybody talks about violence in the suburbs, and it's humiliating to be perceived as the source of problems. I wanted to show them in their daily lives."

"I wanted to talk about the theater, and to make a love story, to talk of the suburbs in a different way, without the stories of forced marriages or the headscarf debate. If I had wanted to make that kind of trendy movie, I would have talked about the headscarf debate, and won a bigger public. But I'm not at all sorry that I made the movie I made."

"I wanted to make a movie that would open up another world, the world of art, and something peaceful. There's been violence in the suburbs since the '60s. There may even be less today, but the media focus on violence. These young people have been demonized. I wanted to make a movie with them, and not betray them."

The theme for the festival was “Immigration, Alienation and Exile in Francophone films.” The Tournées French Film Festival is named after the French word for shooting a film “tournage,” and “tournée” which means a round or circuit. All the films will be subtitled, said Christine Duvergé, a UCR senior lecturer who is organizing this year’s series.

The festival is co-sponsored by the French American Cultural Exchange (FACE), a New York based non-profit organization that offers grants for film festivals that promote France's cultural heritage.

Other organizers include Associate Professor Michelle Bloom, lecturer Jennifer Ramos and graduate student Jane Correia. Sponsors include the UCR Department of Comparative Literature and Foreign Language, and the UCR program in Film and Visual Culture.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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