Directed by François Ozon (France/Germany, 2016, 117 min.). In French and German with English subtitles.
François Ozon (Swimming Pool, 8 Women) directs this exquisite drama set in Germany and France in the immediate aftermath of the First World War. Filmed mostly in black and white, Frantz recalls the mourning period that follows any great national tragedy through the eyes of two survivors: Anna (21-year-old Paula Beer in a breakthrough performance), a bereft German woman whose fiancé, Frantz, was killed during trench warfare; and Adrien (Pierre Niney, Yves Saint Laurent, The Odyssey), a young French veteran who appears in town mysteriously, placing flowers on Frantz’s grave. Anna forms a close friendship with the melancholy young man as she learns of his deep friendship with Frantz, conjured up in evocative flashbacks. What follows is a surprising exploration of how Ozon’s characters wrestle with their conflicting feelings: survivor’s guilt, anger, and a longing for romantic love and familial comfort.
Frantz won the César Award for Best Cinematography and was nominated for eight more, including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Original Score.
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