Until 31 October, as part of the fifth edition of the Festival Cine por Mujeres Madrid, the Instituto Francés of Madrid is organising a retrospective dedicated to the French actress, screenwriter and director Agnès Jaoui. The screenings will take place at 8 p.m. at the Teatro del Instituto.
The retrospective begins this evening with the film Para todos los gustos (For all tastes). Jean-Jacques Castella, a melancholic businessman, falls in love with Clara, an actress who teaches him English. Trying to get closer to her, Castella takes an interest in her group of friends but quickly realises that he lacks the cultural education that they all display in order to laugh at him. This dramatic comedy, released in 2000, is Agnès Jaoui’s first feature film as a director. It deals with several themes, including prejudice, exclusion and contempt. The film, which was a box-office success, won four César awards and was nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Film.
Next Friday, Como una imagen (Like an image) will be screened. Lolita Cassard, twenty years old, is angry with the whole world because she doesn’t look like the girls in the magazines and wanted to feel beautiful, at least in her father’s eyes. Etienne Cassard, her father, is not very interested in others because he looks at himself too much and feels he is getting old. Pierre Miller is an unsuccessful writer until he meets Etienne. His wife, Sylvia Miller, a singing teacher, trusts in her husband’s talent but not in hers or in that of Lolita, her pupil, until she realises that her father is Etienne Cassard. This is the story of human beings who know very well what they would do if they were in the place of others, but who are still looking for their own place.
And finally, on Monday 31 October, the Instituto will be screening Háblame de la lluvia (Talk to me about the rain), in which Agathe Villanova, a feminist who is involved in politics, returns to her childhood home in the south of France to help her sister sort out her mother’s things, who died a year earlier. Agathe did not like the region but had to stay because of upcoming electoral commitments. Her sister, her husband and children live at home, but also Mimouna, an Algerian maid. Mimouma’s son and his friend Michel Ronsard want to make a documentary about Agathe’s life as a “successful” woman. It is August. There are clouds, it’s raining. It is not normal. Nothing will happen normally.