KINGS AND QUEEN (ROIS ET REINE) (Arnaud Desplechin, 2004)
Anthology Film Archives
32 Second Ave. at Second St.
Saturday, October 31, 6:00, and Saturday, November 7, 8:30
Series runs October 29 - November 8 (companion series at FIAF runs November 3 - December 15)
Award-winning French actor-director Mathieu Amalric is celebrating his fiftieth birthday with an exciting invasion of New York City, where he is being honored in a pair of terrific companion film series and will also star in a theatrical production. FIAF’s CinéSalon tribute runs on Tuesday nights through December 15, beginning November 3 with a screening of his 2014 film The Blue Room, followed by a Q&A with Amalric and costar and cowriter Stéphanie Cléau, who is also his real-life partner; Amalric will also star in Fight or Flight (Le Moral des Ménages), Cléau’s stage adaptation of the novel by Eric Reinhardt. But the big festivities begin at Anthology Film Archives, where “Mathieu Amalric: Renaissance Man” runs October 29 through November 8, featuring ten of his films, including Otar Iosseliani’s 1984 Favorites of the Moon, in which he makes his film debut, and 2001’s Eat Your Soup, his first directorial effort.
Amalric has made several films with Arnaud Desplechin (A Christmas Tale, My Sex Life . . . or How I Got into an Argument), and one of the best is being shown October 31 and November 7 at Anthology. In Kings and Queen, Emmanuelle Devos is spectacular as Nora, a divorced single mother with a ten-year-old son (Valentin Lelong), an ailing father (Maurice Garrel), a troubled sister (Nathalie Boutefeu), a straitlaced, boring fiance (Olivier Rabourdin), a dead ex-husband who appears as a ghost (Joachim Salinger), a manic, tax-evading ex-husband who is institutionalized (a fabulous Amalric), and a deep-seated survival instinct that is infectious. Throw in a suicidal woman (Magalie Woch) who can’t get enough sex, an alluring doctor (Catherine Deneuve), a drug-addicted lawyer (Hippolyte Girardot), a remarkably calm, gun-toting convenience-store owner (Jean-Paul Roussillon), and other unusual characters and plotlines and you have one highly entertaining, complex, and marvelously original French drama that will fly by much faster than its two-and-a-half-hour length would lead you to believe. Amalric won his first César for the role; he won his second three years later for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. Amalric will be at Anthology to introduce the October 31 screening of Roman Polanski’s Venus in Fur.