Les Amandiers: Directed by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi

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Les Amandiers: Directed by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi
Les Amandiers is French-Italian director Valeria Bruni Tedeschi’s semi-autobiographical tale of being a young person at a French theater school. The film (which has an English title of Forever Young) premiered at Cannes “En Competition” for the 75th Cannes Film Festival. And there’s been some buzz around this relatively quiet and semi-autobiographical film about growing up amid the backdrop of a French theater school. Though, not all critics have been too kind, with Variety calling the film “busy, blustery, self-involved melodrama.” It’s an assessment which I believe is somewhat warranted. Turin, Italy-born Valeria Bruni Tedeschi is also an actress and screenwriter, as well as a director. She and her family relocated from Italy to France in 1973. (Her sister’s name is also well known in France; Valeria’s younger sister is Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, the former First Lady of France.) Bruni Tedeschi has had success at Cannes before, too. Her 2013 film, A Castle in Italy, was nominated for the Palme d’Or, and she also won the Prix Spécial du Jury in 2007 for her film Actrices. Les Amandiers Photo 3 © 2022 Ad Vitam Production, Agat Films et Cie Bibi Film TV, Arte France Cinema In her 20s, Bruni Tedeschi attended a prestigious acting school at Théâtre des Amandiers. This film – loosely based on that time in her life – is her fifth directorial effort. And it’s a tribute to that time when she attended theater school. Speaking with Variety, the director says of making this film, “There was no preset recipe. What we did is start from autobiographical material and then elaborate on it. We changed it, mixed things up. Did some rethinking. Added to it, then subtracted. We had fun with reality to make up a story that has its rules and coherence. Reality is chaotic. The elaboration of a screenplay means putting order in the chaos and trying to see things about our existences more clearly.” Les Amandiers is a sweet, tender, and at times, chaotic film about what it means to be young and grow up. It’s about the harsh realities of life when you’re no longer a child but not a fully-fledged adult, either. Les Amandiers Photo 2 © 2022 Ad Vitam Production, Agat Films et Cie Bibi Film TV, Arte France Cinema
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Lead photo credit : Les Amandiers Photo 1 © 2022 Ad Vitam Production, Agat Films et Cie Bibi Film TV, Arte France Cinema

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Anne McCarthy is a contributing writer to BBC News, Teen Vogue, The Telegraph, Dance Magazine, and more. She has a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Westminster and is the Editor in Chief of Fat Tire Tours’ travel blog. She lives in New York City.