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35 Shots of Rum (2008): Anniversary Screening

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Director: Claire Denis

Starring: Alex Descas, Mati Diop, Nicole Dogue

France, 2008

99 Mins

Rating – 12

Doors – 3pm, Film – 3.30pm

Claire Denis documents the soulful quotidian of train driver Lionel (Alex Descas) and his college student (Mati Diop) as they come to terms with their lives nearing graduation and retirement. Join us as we celebrate the ten year anniversary of this modern masterpiece.

Widower Lionel (Alex Descas) has raised his daughter Josephine (Mati Diop) on his own since she was young. The two are used to living alone, dependent solely on one another. But now that Josephine is in college Lionel is beginning to realize that this form of isolation will not last forever. When their neighbour Noe (Grégoire Colin) makes his long-harboured feelings for Josephine known, Lionel reluctantly accepts the fact that his daughter has grown up and will one day leave him. An homage to the Yasujiro Ozu, Claire Denis’ enduring film about the letting go involved in growing up launches our season in celebration of her work.

Things happen, but without dramatic punctuation. Moving with a sense of continuous flow rather than bumping through a series of climaxes, 35 Shots becomes a sort of ballet of emotions, executed with weightless grace and poise.
— Film Comment Magazine
Perfectly orchestrated … an allusive tone-poem approach, predicated on minimal dialogue and maximum atmosphere.
— New York Times
35 RHUMS is one of the greatest films of Denis’ career, one in which the filmmaker, influenced by the skill and style of Ozu, encounters a delicate balance between ritual and tragedy, loss and daily life.
— Senses of Cinema