I am just back from attending the Lumiere Blanche Festival in Tassin-la-Demi-Lune. This is the intriguing name of a suburb of Lyon, the birth town of the brothers Lumiere and also of Bertrand Tavernier. The festival took place in an old independent cinema situated next to a primary school where the organiser of the Festival went as a child to ‘see Laurel and Hardy’ he tells me. Although refurbished with comfortable seats and only recently digitised Le Lem cinema gave an impression of Cinema Paradiso with children running, calling and laughing in the adjacent playground when I arrived for the afternoon session.
It will take me some time to process and post all the information I gathered about the rest of the Festival, about Dr. Depassio (geriatrician) and about the films chosen at this 11th Intergenerational Film Festival. Today I will briefly comment on its intergenerational aspect.
There were two afternoon sessions for schools and the animated film Wrinkles (2011 – Translated as La Tete En L’air) directed by Ignacio Ferreras was screened to full cinema audiences of secondary school pupils and nursing students. Wrinkles deals with the admission to a care home of a man with early signs of Alzheimer’s disease. The different issues are very sensitively and sometimes humorously treated. But I will not dwell or analyse the film which is very strongly gendered. There are no important female presence as resident or carer in this knowledgeable film. I found it difficult to engage since my interest in and the purpose of this blog are, on the whole, the ageing woman. However I was left puzzled as to the function of this deliberate exclusion.
I believe this Festival is unique in presenting films about ageing people to a young audience and it was gratifying to see them very much interested. People professionally involved in the care of old people were also present at the session and participated in the discussions. This kind of dialogue is so important if we are to break the barriers between young and old that are so divisive in the media.