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After the Wave

Young French Cinema in the 1970s

Isabelle Huppert and Gerard Depardieu in Loulou showing as part of After the Wave

After the French New Wave and the tumultuous political events of May 1968, a younger and more progressive generation of directors emerged. This season explores the work of these bold new directors.

Naturalistic, often autobiographical, interested in the complexities of youth and love and intimacy, this new generation of filmmakers, including Chantal Akerman, Catherine Breillat and Philippe Garrel did take note of the famous work of the earlier generation.

Yet, there’s an edge to the tone of these newer films: frankness about sex, an interest in the cultural fall-out of the civil unrest and protests of May ’68 and above all, a foregrounding of regional, working-class and female protagonists.

These filmmakers never came together to make a movement as such, and because of this, their work is perhaps a little lesser known than of the Nouvelle Vague that came before it.

This season is a chance to dive in and discover some exciting and influential filmmaking that thus far has been somewhat overlooked.



Discover After the Wave

two people embracing in the bed

Screen Notes: After the Wave

Cinema curator Tamara Anderson takes us back to the heady days of 1970s France and tells us how the films that came after the Nouvelle Vague were influenced by the turbulent political events of May 1968.

Barbican Cinema 2 & 3