Miami welcomes French film festival–IF YOU GO

Bonjour France Cinema Floride. Miami’s Tower Theater presents the fifth annual French film festival– a U.S. premier of 2009’s popular French movies—this Friday through Sunday.

This year’s showcase offers multiple genres that include comedy, romance, thriller, drama and animation.

There will be 11 screenings during the festival, all personally chosen by producer Patrick Gimenez.

“I follow my heart on what to show for the public,” Gimenez said.

After sifting through 170 French films over the year, Gimenez selected 40 to be played throughout the east coast. Locations include Miami and Boca Raton, New York and Connecticut.

Festival passes range from $100 general admission to a $65 student discount. Single movie showings are $8 for students and $12 for an opening or closing production.

“I play what I admire most at the end of the day for the real committed movie fans,” Gimenez said.

With a turnout of 6,000 people in 2008, Gimenez plans for the audience to exceed last year’s capacity. “We do this for the people, because we don’t make money,” he said with a chuckle. Gimenez explained how on Oct. 15, ticket sales skyrocketed passed what he sold on the same day last year.

In charge of advertising and press relations is Laurence Moreau, Gimenez’s right-hand woman. Moreau explains that it’s the public who make this festival possible.

“Without people you would have nothing,” she said.

Although the movies are French films with English subtitles, in the past the audience has a significant blend of 32 percent French and 37 percent American citizens.

“It is fantastic to see the sensibility between American and French movies,” Moreau said. “The big thing that differentiates the two is that American movies have more action as French movies are more psychological.”

If You Go
What: France Cinema Floride
Where: Tower Theater (1508 S.W. 8th St. Miami)
When: Friday through Sunday
Cost: $8-12 per screening