– The Belgian sales agent is presenting the first ever Nepalese feature film to compete in the festival, whilst also enjoying a presence in the Panorama section via the new Bruce LaBruce movie
Shambhala by Min Bahadur Bham
Shambhala, a debut feature film directed by Min Bahadur Bham, and the first ever Nepalese feature film to be presented in competition in the Berlinale, charts the quest of a young pregnant woman as she sets off in search of her missing husband, together with her monk brother-in-law who is also her husband, given that Pena lives in a community in the heart of the Himalayas where polygamy is the norm. The movie opens a window onto a far-off culture but it also paints a sensitive portrait of an ultra-modern heroine. Shambhala is co-produced by Nepal, France (CDP), Norway (Ape&Bjørn AS), Hong Kong, Turkey, Taiwan, the USA and Qatar.
Best Friend Forever will also be promoting the new movie by the iconoclastic Canadian director Bruce LaBruce, who has a marked tendency towards the provocative and whose previous film Saint-Narcisse also features in the agent’s film catalogue. He’s set to present The Visitor in the Panorama line-up, which is a decidedly explicit re-writing of Pasolini’s Theorem, based around a middle-class English family who find themselves transformed by a series of sexual epiphanies. The movie is produced by British firm a/political.
The sales agent will also be making the most of the market to present a handful of French-language films expected to be released in the coming months, starting with Zénithal by Jean-Baptiste Saurel (read our news), which follows the crusade of a young woman who is aiming for nothing less than peace between the sexes. According to sales agent Martin Gondre, the film is inscribed within the post #metoo conversation about couples relationships and dares an anything-but-subtle comedic approach, positing itself as “a romantic kung-fu comedy”. Zénithal is produced by Kazak, the producers behind Titane [+see also:
interview: Julia Ducournau, Vincent Li…
film profile], and is set to be distributed in France via The Jokers.
Best Friend Forever will also be kicking off negotiations on behalf of Aimer perdre, the new and explosive movie by fraternal duo Lenny and Harpo Guit, to whom we owe the ultra-punk offering Mother Schmuckers [+see also:
interview: Harpo and Lenny Guit
film profile], discovered in Sundance. This new opus is said to be less trashy and more emotional, whilst simultaneously confirming the singularity of their cinema.
Another film in Brussels agent’s line-up is The Fantastic Three, Michaël Dichter’s first film which is presented as a French Stand by Me and which was screened in the Saint-Jean-de-Luz and Arras festivals, among others, last year. The film follows Max, Vivian and Tom, who are 13 years old and who have always been inseparable. But the summer brings endless upheaval to their lives: the last factory in their small town located in the Ardennes is going to close, Vivian is going to move house, and Max’s big brother, Seb, is getting out of prison. Little by little, he drags Max into his schemes, and all these trials combine to jeopardise the bond between these three heroes… This crowd-pleasing family tragicomedy which stars the unmissable Raphaël Quenard is accumulating one youth jury prize after another as it tours the various festivals, and is set to be circulated among a comfortable number of French cinemas on 1 May, courtesy of Zinc.
Last but not least, Best Friend Forever will be selling Emilie Brisavoine’s latest documentary, which was previously selected for the Karlovy Vary Film Festival’s Proxima section: Keeping Mum [+see also:
interview: Emilie Brisavoine
film profile], which sees the filmmaker returning to her usual documentary film language characterised by hybrid sources, to deliver a funny and intimate journey-come-odyssey into motherhood.
(Translated from French)