“Queen to Play” is only the latest film for Sandrinne Bonnaire one of the most respected and celebrated French actresses. At age 16 she won a Cesár Most Promising Actress in her debut role in “A Nos Amours” (To Our Loves) and a second one for “Sans Toi Ni Loi” (Vagabond). Perhaps her most important achievement is not as an actress but as director for the documentary about her autistic sister entitled “Elle s’ appelle Sabine” (Her Name is Sabine).The docu won the International Film Critics Federation Prize at Cannes and the Prix France Culture Cinéma in 2008. The Filipino public is gifted with the free screenings of all three films which will be included in the retrospective of her work. Film fans can watch them at Shang Cineplex, ShangRila Plaza from June 8-19, 2011.
According to Wikipedia, “Bonnaire has a daughter, Jeanne, from a relationship with actor William Hurt, whom she met in 1991 during filming of the Albert Camus novel La Peste (The Plague). They acted together in Secrets Shared with a Stranger (1994). Since March 2003 she has been married to actor and screenwriter Guillaume Laurant, with whom she has had a second daughter, Adèle.”
Film descriptions provided by Gretchen Wilwayco of the French Embassy:
A Nos Amours (To Our Loves)
At a vacation resort where she is rehearsing No Trifling with Love, 15 year old Suzanne rejects her boyfriend Luc and gives herself without any realpleasure toa visiting young American. Back toParis, she has other love affairs. Clashing with her parents, she comes up against a neurotic mother, a father who abandons them and her falsely protective brother. Suzanne seeks herself while going from one guy to another.
Directed by Maurice Pialat
Cast: Evelyne Ker, Dominique Besnehard and Pierre Loup Rajot and more.
Sans Toit Ni Loi (Vagabond)
In the middle of winter in southern France, a girl is frozen to death in a ditch. Who was she? “A drug addict, a mental patient,” some say. People who came across her try to draw a portrait of this young wanderer. As she wanders you may see her bathing nude ata beach, being picked up by a planetogist as she hitch hikes, being lusted after by garage mechanics… her name was Mona, some rejected her others tried in vain to help her. No one was able to hold her back.
Directed by Agnes Varda
Cast: Macha Meril, Stephane Freiss and Yoland Moreau.
La Ceremonie ( A Judgement in Stone)
Catherine and her husband Georges Lelievre think they’ve found a real gem when they hire as their maid a discreet, quiet and illiterate girl named Sophie. Sophie is dyslexic and hides it from her employers. Sophie becomes a friend of Jeanne a very strange young woman torn between her job and an imaginary life of dreams and fantasies. A macabre dance begins for these two cast offs, blending good and evil.
Directed by Claude Chabrol from a novel by Ruth Rendell
Cast: Isabelle Huppert, Jean Pierre Cassel, Jacqueline Bisset
The life of Claire a young woman with no history, a medical representative and mother of two children brightens up. At a cocktail party she runs into an actor turned into a sad clown from the drudgery of hosting wedding events and banquets. Their unofficial date lasts the whole night one disastrous idea after another. Will this humorous encounter change her life?
Directed by Philip Lioret
Cast: Jacques Gamblin, Isabel Candelier, Zinedine Soualem and Jacques Boudet
Elle s’applle Sabine (Her name is Sabine)
A documentary film by Sandrine Bonnaire
A sensitive portrait of Sabine Bonnaire, a 38 year old autistic woman directed by Sandrine her closest sister. It tells her story through personal archives filmed by actress over a period of 25 years and shows her life today in a special facility. The documentary evokes and engaging personality whose development and multiple talents have been crushed by a failing care system.
Jouese (Queen to Play)
Helené (Sandrine Bonnaire) knocked once, not hearing a response she opened the door with her key. Then she heard their voices in the terrace. “Go ahead” (in English motioned for Helené to go in) they were an American couple who seemed to be lost in each other. As a chamber maid she fixed the bed and tried not to pay attention. A slight breeze blows the thin curtain into the room. Helené felt like she was invading their space, their time together. And yet all they were doing was playing chess. They were both middle aged and still so attractive especially the woman (Jennifer Beals). She was in her nighties, vibrant, smiling and seductive without making any effort to do so. For some reason Helené could not take her eyes away from them. click on link for full review