Many French events will happen at the San Francisco Public Main Library in July, including:
Bastille Day Comedy | "The Revolutionists":
Celebrate Bastille Day by attending the Main Library's staged reading of The Revolutionists, Lauren Gunderson’s thought-provoking comedy about women active in the French Revolution.
In Paris in 1793, at the height of the French Revolution’s Reign of Terror, mobs are forming, heads are rolling, and Olympe de Gouges is writing a comedy. When an assassin, a spy, and an infamous former queen knock on Olympe’s door, these badass women must decide their role in the revolution. Will they be remembered on the pages of history? Or will their time be cut short by Madame Guillotine?
Written by San Franciscan Lauren Gunderson (America’s most produced living playwright), The Revolutionists is based on real women, real executions, and real terror. . . but remember it’s a comedy.
Book Club | "Notre Dame de Paris":
On Thursday July 18, join SFPL's book club's spirited discussion of Victor Hugo’s classic 1837 novel Notre Dame of Paris (aka The Hunchback of Notre Dame). In this melodramatic tale a crazed priest, a struggling poet, a reckless soldier, and a deformed bell ringer all fall in love with the beautiful gypsy Esmeralda. The characters struggle with their fates and with each other against the backdrop of Paris’ famous monument, the Cathedral of Notre Dame.
Classics of French Cinema: "The 400 Blows" and "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg":
Attend a free screening of two classic French films, director François Truffaut’s nostalgic ode to childhood, The 400 Blows and Jacques Demy’s astonishing, color-saturated musical romantic drama, The Umbrellas of Cherbourg.
The 400 Blows—François Truffaut’s popular 1959 film presents the adventures of a misunderstood adolescent, Antoine Doinel, who runs away from his school and his parents and explores the gritty, beckoning streets of Paris. A landmark of French cinema, The 400 Blows won numerous awards and launched the careers of its director, Truffaut, and its main actor, Jean-Pierre Léaud. 101 mins. In French with English subtitles.
The Umbrellas of Cherbourg—Director Jacques Demy’s beautifully photographed musical drama features memorable songs and incidental music by the great Michel Legrand. The film’s story follows an ill-fated romance between the beautiful 16-year old Geneviève (Catherine Deneuve) and her auto mechanic boyfriend Guy (Nino Castelnuovo). One of the greatest movie musicals ever made, The Umbrellas of Cherbourg won top prize at the 1965 Cannes Film Festival. 93 mins. In French with English subtitles.
Classics of French Cinema | Faces Places by Agnès Varda and JR:
Enjoy a free screening of Faces Places, an entrancing documentary film directed by the famous French director Agnès Varda and the talented French photographer and muralist J.R. In the course of the film, the two directors travel through rural and urban France, taking photos of people and then enlarging the photos to colossal size in order to celebrate the photographed individuals and their communities. As Varda and J.R. journey together, they share stories and express their views on art and life. 90 mins. In French with English subtitles.