France, 2020, 97 min, 2K DCP, Dir. Fanny Liatard & Jérémy Trouilh, French with English subtitles, Cohen Media Group
"A mesmerizing debut." —The Guardian
"A sweet and sentimental story…pitched somewhere between fantasy and real-time suspense." —Indiewire
Youri has lived all his life in Gagarine Cité, a vast red brick housing project on the outskirts of Paris. From the heights of his apartment, he dreams of becoming an astronaut. But when plans to demolish his community's home are leaked, Youri joins the resistance. With his friends Diana and Houssam, he embarks on a mission to save Gagarine, transforming the estate into his own "starship"—before it disappears into space forever. Newcomer Alseni Bathily "is terrific as Youri, a young man with nowhere to go but up" according to Phil de Semlyen of Time Out.
Based on directors Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Trouilh's 2015 short of the same name, Gagarine was shot on the cusp of the actual demolition of the Cité Gagarine housing project in collaboration with its residents in Ivry-sur-Seine. "We try to show that the building is important but in the end what’s left is the people. Their relationship to the place endures whatever happens," said Trouilh. Liatard called the film "a tool of remembrance, bearing witness to the architectural vision of the period, and above all to the people who brought the place alive."
Official selection, Cannes Film Festival.
Tickets to these screenings are $12.75 and under. Cinema members pay only $8.