10 Good Reasons to See BELLE AND SEBASTIAN at the 2015 Greater Farmington Film Festival

Belle & SebastienYes, you’ll want to see ALL the films at the 2015 Greater Farmington Film Festival but here are 10 good reasons to see Belle and Sebastian on Sunday, March 8th, at 3:00 pm at the Memorial Holocaust Center.

1.   Belle and Sebastian‘s director, Nicolas Vanier, is a French adventurist, writer and wildlife documentary director whose past experience includes filming in some of the coldest parts of the world: the Yukon in Canada and Siberia. The film Belle and Sebastian, with its panoramic vistas of mountain ranges and sweeping landscapes, definitely shows off Vanier’s penchant for the outdoors. Eric Guichard, the film’s cinematographer, has won a Cesar Award for Best Cinematography and a European Film Award for Best Cinematographer.

2.   Love to travel? This adventure film will get your travel juices flowing. Who wouldn’t love to visit the lovely French Alps in person? From the very first scene, you will marvel at the majestic scenery presented in spectacular color.

3.   If you love dogs or are thinking about adding a dog to your family, you can check out the great Pyrenean Mountain Dog breed featured in this film. One look at the majestic Belle in all her glory, you just might end up wanting one of these big dogs for your very own!

4.   Rekindle your love of foreign films. European films have a different look and feel than American films. Belle and Sebastian is in French, with English sub-titles.

5.   Simply put, this is a feel-good family-friendly movie about the unbreakable friendship between a boy and his dog. It doesn’t get any better than this.

6.   Are you a WWII history buff? The film is set in 1943, and France is under occupation by Germany. Some residents of the small village are helping Jewish refugees cross through the mountains over the border into neutral Switzerland.

7.   Did we mention the awesome scenery in this film yet? The snowy French Alps in the Haute-Maurienne-Vanoiseare region of France along the the French/Swiss border are prominently featured. This film was shot in beautiful 35mm, lending itself well to the outdoor scenery.

8. The Holocaust Memorial Center is a nationally renowned  museum whose mission is to to remember those who perished and survived the Holocaust and to set forth the lessons of the Holocaust as a model for teaching ethical conduct and responsible decision-making. Take some time to arrive before the film starts and attend the 1:00 pm tour, lasting about 1.5 hours, and often concluded with a presentation by a Holocaust survivor.

9. Tcheky Karyo is one of France’s most popular actors, and an adorable Félix Bossuet in the role of Sebastian is a must-see. Karyo plays César, Sebastian’s prickly, yet compassionate adopted grandfather. Both will reprise their roles in “Belle et Sebastien, l’aventure continue,” coming out this year.

10. This film is director Vanier’s adaptation of a well-known French children’s story, Belle et Sébastien, written by French actress/author Cécile Aubry in the early 1960s. In addition to this film, it was recreated as a live-action television series in France, a Japanese anime series in the 1980s and a Scottish pop music group takes it’s name after the beloved characters. Aubry’s son, actor Mehdi El Glaoui, who starred in the live-action series as a boy, appears in this version as André.

Check out the trailer below and purchase your tickets at the Farmington Civic Theater, Costick Center, or online at the festival web site.

kickstART Your Weekend with Some Good Reads: Bloated American Dreams, How Walking Helps Us Think, and the New Wave of Public Art

Our Friday update here at kickstART farmington highlights some communitygreat articles we’ve read this week dealing with art, creative placemaking, and building great communities. You’re sure to find some inspiration to make your life and our community even better!

1. The Bloated American Dream: The size of the average American house has grown consistently (from 983 square feet in 1950 to a monstrous 2,679 square feet), even as the average U.S. household size has decreased.

2. French Revolution Against the Automobile: By inserting high-quality transit systems into old urban and new suburban fabrics, largely at the expense of space previously dedicated to automobiles, the new revolutionaries have reversed declining transit use, and have stimulated pedestrian, and bicycle use in French cities.

3. Walking Helps Us Think: Because we don’t have to devote much conscious effort to the act of walking, our attention is free to wander … This is precisely the kind of mental state that studies have linked to innovative ideas and strokes of insight.

4. The New Wave of Public Art: Public art … can move away from often staid, intimidating, bureaucratic public buildings and into busy, non-traditional public spaces. Public art can ask questions about stories of place, histories, or communities, rather than simply offer answers.

5. Front Porch PlacemakingIn many cases the front porch is the most prominently spatial element of the home because it is located on the front façade and usually in the center of it. As such front porches have a strong social connection between private and public space.