Across China: Chinese youths bond with romantic France at film festival

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BEIJING, April 28 (Xinhua) -- In front of the centennial lecture hall of Peking University in Beijing, students queued up to watch the three films vying in the main competition unit of the 14th Beijing International Film Festival.

Among the crowd stood Wu Jingfeng, a junior majoring in environmental science. He had chosen to watch the French sitcom "A Real Job," which in his opinion, depicted intriguing stories between the substitute teacher and students and offered a vivid portrayal of the classroom environment and the daily lives of teachers and students in France.

Films serve as an excellent window to enhance mutual understanding between different countries, said Wu. "I hope there will be more films or academic exchanges between China and France so that we can gain a comprehensive understanding of French society and culture."

The 14th Beijing International Film Festival, which concluded on Friday, attracted the attention and participation of numerous filmmakers and movie enthusiasts. The event featured over 240 domestic and foreign film masterpieces and more than 100 activities.

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and France, as well as the China-France Year of Culture and Tourism. Multiple cinemas in Beijing showed 30 French films, including "A Real Job" during the film festival, providing an opportunity for movie lovers to explore French cinema.

During the launch ceremony of the French film week at the festival, Myriam Pavageau, minister counsellor of French Embassy in China, stated that this year holds special significance for both countries, with numerous cultural activities planned to enhance cultural connections and cooperation between the two countries' film industries.

French films enjoy great acclaim among Chinese audiences, and the selected films showcased during French film week exemplify the diversity and vitality of French cinema. It is hoped that Chinese audiences will have the opportunity to see more French films in theaters, thus fostering increased cooperation between China and France in the film industry, she said.

"From French films, I have seen different groups and aspects of French society. I feel that French filmmakers have a particularly strong sense of social responsibility in promoting social development through their creative expression," said Gao Yuan, a graduate student at the College of Urban and Environmental Sciences of Peking University.

Gao, a 25-year-old film enthusiast, recently visited major cinemas in Beijing to watch 13 films showcased at the Beijing film festival. She also participated in a French film exhibition jointly organized by Peking University and the French Embassy in China, contributing to the overall planning and writing of promotional materials.

"I hope for more cooperation and exchanges between China and France in the fields of art and education. I also look forward to more high-quality French films coming to China to present a more diverse and charming image of France," Gao said.

Peking University hoped to use films as a medium to enhance the artistic literacy of young audiences and lay a solid foundation for future cultural exchanges between China and France, said Zhou Yuanyuan, deputy director of the centennial lecture hall. Enditem

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