Kourtrajmé gets its close-up: Grassroots cinema from the Paris suburbs
12 September 2020 | 1:14 pm
In 1995 "La Haine" rocked French cinema to its core, and the shockwaves were felt across society, from artistic circles to the underprivileged suburbs it depicted. One bittersweet phrase from the film's script sums up its dark sense of humour: "jusqu'ici tout va bien" (or "so far, so good"). That catchphrase is now the title of an exhibition in Paris which is showcasing the achievements of the Kourtrajmé collective which started in the suburbs at that time.
Clashes took place on the Champs-Elysées in Paris last Saturday as a "Freedom Convoy" entered the French capital. In that context, old videos dating from 2019 were shared on social media – we sift through some of those that went viral.
In this edition of French Connections, we look at some of the fallout of the war in Ukraine here in France. Events that would be grabbing headlines have been overshadowed. That’s the case of the beloved Paris Agriculture Fair, although the conflict in Ukraine has got French farmers worried about a rise in the price of grain feed and fertilisers, as well as higher energy prices. Meanwhile, the French presidential campaign, which would normally be the centre of attention, has also been put on the backburner.
The Kyiv City Ballet has been offered a residency at Paris's Châtelet Theatre. The troupe of 30 dancers were already on tour in France with "The Nutcracker" but found themselves stranded due to the war in Ukraine. They are putting on a special performance this Tuesday. We also hear from members of the Kyiv Grand Ballet, who are also in France and now face a highly uncertain future.
On March 15, 2011, the Syrian revolution began. Ameer al Halbi covered the ensuing conflict as a photographer for several years, before fleeing his hometown of Aleppo and finding refuge in France. Once there, he continued to work as a photographer, driven by the same commitment and passion. Halbi was seriously injured at the end of 2020 while covering a protest in Paris. In this first-person report, he tells us about his relationship to photography, war and exile.
Key suspect Salah Abdeslam has claimed that he bears no responsibility for the 130 people who were killed in the Paris terror attacks of November 2015. His testimony, during a terse exchange with magistrates, drew anger from survivors and their families, who've also been criticising the decision by defence lawyers to stage a walkout during Tuesday’s hearing. To discuss this and more, we're joined for Perspective by Arthur Dénouveaux, a survivor of the attack on the Bataclan and president of the Life for Paris association.
The suspect is alleged to have rented a car that was seen outside the Bataclan concert hall during the 2015 terror attacks that killed 130 people in total. In court, the suspect said he "didn't kill anyone."
The Kyiv City Ballet company arrived in France the day before war broke out in Ukraine. Its dancers became exiles overnight. Paris has given them refuge with a residency at the city's Châtelet Theatre. The founders, Ivan Kozlov and Ekaterina Kozlova, created the troupe 10 years ago. They join Eve Jackson in the studio to discuss their unique situation and the importance of using culture as a peaceful weapon.
Kendell Geers and Tsoku Maela are two South African artists taking part in 1-54, the leading international art fair dedicated to contemporary art from Africa and the African diaspora, which is currently on show in Paris. The artists speak to Eve Jackson about their work, which addresses mental health issues in African communities, apartheid and global economic concerns. They also discuss the monolith label of "African art" and how more needs to be done for the restitution of stolen African treasures.
A fake "Le Figaro Live" news report on social media claims to report on Chanel stores in Paris being vandalised with Hitler images. The stickers reference Coco Chanel's Nazi connections during World War II. The backlash against the brand has emerged in protest at Chanel's sale ban in Russia amid the war in Ukraine. We tell you more in this edition of Truth or Fake.
French President Emmanuel Macron has set a deadline of 2024 to reopen Paris’s Notre-Dame Cathedral to worshippers and visitors. FRANCE 24's Revisited show is following the progress of this ambitious project and brings you a fresh update, three years after the devastating fire that badly damaged the world-famous cathedral. Our reporter Mélina Huet met those who are involved in the restoration work, both inside the mediaeval edifice and elsewhere in France. They now find themselves in a race against time.
The last surviving alleged attacker, Salah A., said he hoped his apology would help the relatives of those killed. One hundred and thirty people were killed in the atrocities claimed by the "Islamic State" armed group.
The River Seine is the beating heart of Paris. The banks of the river attract 8 million visitors each year, making it one of the busiest places in the French capital. We meet those who take care of the Seine seven days a week, from the technicians checking water quality to members of the river patrol, who respond to emergency call-outs and use radar to explore the river's depths.
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