Filmmaker in person!
French Wedding, Caribbean Style (Zouk, Mariage et Ouélélé!!!)
Laou’s 2003 feature depicts an interracial wedding held in the summertime, shot on self-reflexive MiniDV by the bride’s cocky younger brother. Before long, a scandal emerges that threatens to tear the happy couple’s union apart, exposing the racism of the groom’s parents and the messy fissures beneath the ensemble’s happy façade. While the subject matter may sound familiar, Variety accurately called the film “a far cry from the ethnic feel-good wedding pics inundating domestic shores.” Indeed, Laou offers up an emotional roller-coaster, a no-holds-barred depiction of white racism and an acidic comedy of manners (and prejudices). (Julius-Amédée Laou, France/Martinique, 2003, 91 min.) In French with English subtitles
Mist Melodies of Paris (Mélodie de brumes à Paris)
A West Indian man named Richard (Greg Germain) is haunted by memories of "his war" fighting on behalf of the French government in Algeria. More than twenty years later, he still carries internal trauma. Like Open Mic Solitaire, Laou's second short film is about a man who's mad as hell and can't take it anymore; Jean-Claude Mejstelman's synthesizer score brings an antic, theatrical quality to the story, and a cameo from the filmmaker adds a dash of surrealism. (Julius-Amédée Laou, France, 1985, 23 min.) In French with English subtitles
Followed by a conversation with the filmmaker
Mist Melodies of Paris was restored in 2K under the supervision of Julius-Amédée Laou from the original 35mm negative at LTC Patrimoine (Paris) in partnership with Lightbox Film Center at University of the Arts (Philadelphia). Special thanks to Steve MacFarlane
Julius-Amédée Laou is a filmmaker, playwright, theater director and writer. Born in Paris into a Martinican family, he directed two feature films La Vieille Quimboiseuse et le Majordome (1987) with Robert Liensol and Jenny Alpha, Zouk, Marriage and Ouélélé! (2004) after his two short films. Laou has authored more than thirty stage plays, including Ne M’Appelez Jamais Nègre! (1982) and Folie Ordinaire d’une Fille de Cham (1984). The latter was adapted into a film by Jean Rouch.