Crowd-pleasing comedies, biographical dramas and documentaries, all with a sense of style, will be shown in the Elle Fashion Film Festival from August 1 to 9 at SFX the Emporium.
Among the highlights is the latest opus by sartorially-obsessed filmmaker Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel. It's a sweeping screwball comedy set in a fading European resort hotel. Other entries include the biopics Yves Saint Laurent, My Way and The Look of Love, the French comedies Populaire and Me, Myself and Mum and the documentaries Advanced Style, Notebook on Cities and Clothes and The Day Before: Fendi and Jean Paul Gaultier.
Here's the line-up:
- Yves Saint Laurent – The opening film looks at the young designer in 1957 as he's unexpectedly called upon to oversee the great fashion house established by the recently deceased Christian Dior. He meets the love of his life Pierre Berg้, and together they create the YSL fashion label. Jalil Lespert directs this brand-new French biopic, with Pierre Niney as Saint Laurent and Guillaume Gallienne as Berg้. It screens at 7 on August 1, at 7.10pm on August 3 and 8.40pm on August 5.
- My Way (Cloclo) – The life of a trendsetting singer and the origins of a famous song are covered in this biopic about French showman Claude Francois, whose big hit “Comme d’habitude” eventually became the signature tune of Frank Sinatra. Jérémie Renier stars. It screens at 9.20pm on August 1 and closes the fest at 7.30pm on August 9.
- The Grand Budapest Hotel – Wes Anderson's latest film almost didn't come to the big screen in Bangkok – I think distributors shied away from it because the director uses different aspect ratios to represent different time periods as it covers several decades in the life of a legendary concierge (Ralph Fiennes). Full of colorful and quirky characters, the all-star cast includes F Murray Abraham, Edward Norton, Mathieu Amalric, Saoirse Ronan, Adrien Brody, Willem Dafoe, Lea Seydoux, Jeff Goldblum, Jude Law, Harvey Keitel and Tilda Swinton. Anderson regulars Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray and Owen Wilson also appear. It screens three times – 7.30pm on August 2, 9.20pm on August 4 and 8.40pm on August 7.
- Populaire – Typewriter keys click fast and furiously in this vivid 1950s-set French comedy about a young secretary (Déborah François) who is trained by her boss (Romain Duris) to be the fastest typist in the world. It screens at 3pm on August 2 and 5pm on August 9.
- Notebook on Cities and Clothes – Famed German director Wim Wenders interviews Japanese fashion designer Yohji Yamamoto in this 1989 documentary, with the pair ponder on the relationships between cities, identity and the cinema in the digital age. It screens at 5.30pm on August 2 and 7pm on August 8.
- The Look of Love – English actor Steve Coogan again collaborates with director Michael Winterbottom (24 Hour Party People, Tristram Shandy, The Trip) for this zippy, fact-based yarn about 1950s British soft-porn publisher, club owner and impresario Paul Raymond. Matt Lucas, Imogen Poots, Anna Friel and Tamsin Egerton also star. It screens at 3pm on August 3 and 8.40pm on August 8.
- Me, Myself and Mum (Les garçons et Guillaume, à table!) – Winner of the Art Cinema Prize during the Directors’ Fortnight at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, this French comedy stars Guillaume Gallienne, who adapts his own one-man stage show – an autobiographical romp about his sexually confused youth and his love-hate relationship with his domineering mother, who raised him more like a daughter than a son. Screens at 5.10pm on August 3 and 9.20pm on August 6.
- The Day Before: Fendi and Jean Paul Gaultier – Iconic designers Karl Lagerfeld and Jean Paul Gaultier take centerstage in this documentary capturing the flurry of activity in the hours before a major fashion showcase. It screens at 7pm on August 4 and August 6.
- Advanced Style – Showing that style never really grows old, this documentary looks at the lives of seven unique New York women, aged 62 to 95, who challenge conventional ideas about beauty, ageing and society’s obsession with youth. It shows at 7pm on August 5 and August 7.
Tickets are 200 baht and can be purchased in advance at the cinema box office. For more details, call (02) 268 8888 or check SFCinemaCity.com.