This weekend: French Film Festival in Richmond

In the last ten years, Kathryn and I have traveled with a variety of objectives. Our first trip abroad together was to pick up a new car in Germany. (For the record, I’m still driving it, and it’s running strong with over 150,000 miles.) We once spent a week in California visiting all 21 of the Spanish missions there. We spent two weeks in the south of France last year to take French lessons. A couple months ago we took a road trip to Mexico for no reason other than to eat Chinese food. And of course we’ve made numerous trips to see friends and family.

This weekend we’re making a trip to Richmond, Virginia, specifically for the 25th annual French Film Festival. Few people realize Richmond each year hosts the largest French film festival in the United States. I lived in Richmond for several years and attended occasional individual screenings during past festivals, but it’ll be a first for Kathryn, and for me it’ll be the first time as a festival passholder, devoting an entire long weekend to French film.

As I update the blog over the next several days, please bear in mind that when it comes to French cinema — or to cinema in general, really — I’m an amateur rather than a connaisseur, in the French meaning of those words. My insight will therefore be limited to what I like and don’t like. To quote Mr. Cranky, whose movie reviews I sorely miss, “I may not have a Ph.D. in feelm, but I know what I don’t like.”

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