When one conjures images of film schools, it’s often associated with college-level competition and camaraderie as budding directors attempt to prep their first features. Éric Baudelaire rethinks these ideas in his new documentary Un Film Dramatique, which was shot over the course of four years in the newly constructed Dora Maar middle school on the outskirts of Paris.

Following 21 middle schoolers who are part of a film club as they discuss the drama of their daily lives and experiment with cameras and equipment, the acclaimed film played at Locarno, TIFF, and NYFF, and will now arrive this month. It’ll open virtually on February 26 at BAM and Museum of the Moving Image in New York, Laemmle Theaters, and Acropolis Cinema in Los Angeles, and Gene Siskel Film Center in Chicago.

Un film dramatique is fundamentally about awareness and powerlessness, the fact that the young people of France see everything going on around them, have rather sophisticated opinions about their world, but possess limited agency to do anything about it,” Michael Sicinski  said in his Cinema Scope review. “They discuss Marine Le Pen, Donald Trump, and anti-immigrant sentiment, and Arab students talk about perceptions that other Parisians have about them following a terror attack. But with Baudelaire’s help, they go deeper than this. “

We’re pleased to debut the exclusive trailer and poster courtesy of Cinema Guild below.

Un Film Dramatique opens on February 26 in Virtual Cinemas.

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