MIFF 2022 – 18 multilingual films to see

Reading Time: 12 minutes

 Melbourne International Film Festival 2022 (MIFF 2022) started yesterday. In this article, we let you know about 18 multilingual films (where French is one of the languages) that are showing at MIFF 2022.  Click here to read last week’s article about films in (only) French to see at the festival.

MIFF 2022

Next week we will let you know about the MIFF 2022 films that you can watch at home anywhere in Australia with MIFF Play.


The Afterlight

Director: Charlie Shackleton

Origin: UK (2021)

Experimentations | Feature

Language: Arabic, Croatian, English, French, German, Hindi, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Russian, Slovenian, Spanish, and Swedish

Genre: Experimental, Historical

One print. One screening. A one-of-a-kind chance to reflect on the ephemeral nature of celluloid, even as you watch it deteriorate before your very eyes.


A truly unique cinematic experience, The Afterlight is a film designed to be lost to time. It exists as a single 35mm print, a living document of its own circulation that erodes every time it screens. Made up of fragments of hundreds of films from around the world, it features a cast of performers who are themselves no longer alive – an ensemble of ghostly figures that evokes the eerie twilight between life and death.


Extending an oeuvre that blends cheerful provocations with deeper explorations of personal and cinematic memory, The Afterlight questions the nature of permanence in an age of endless, disposable content.


The director will be present for a Q&A post both screenings of the film.



Director: Marie Kreutzer

Origin: Austria, France, Germany, Luxembourg (2022)

Headliners | Feature

Language: English, French, German, Hungarian with English subtitles

Genre: Drama

Vicky Krieps is mesmerising as Empress Elisabeth of Austria in this bold, revisionist Cannes prize winner that uncinches the Sissi legend forever. She won the Un Certain Regard Best Performance Prize for her performance.


It’s 1877 and Elisabeth (Krieps, Phantom Thread; Bergman Island, originally slated for MIFF 2021) – Empress of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria and Queen of Hungary – has just turned 40. Feeling lonely, bored and old, “Sissi” (as her subjects fondly refer to her) defies her husband, Emperor Franz Joseph, and attempts to withdraw from public life, instead wearing a veil over her face, subjecting her body to strenuous physical training and obsessing over her weight. She’s rebelling against the restraints of royalty and who the world believes her to be.


Fire of Love

Director: Sara Dosa

Origin: Canada, USA (2022)

Documentaries, The Natural World | Feature

Language: English, French with English subtitles

Genre: Adventure , Animation , Documentary , Romance

In this love story written in lava, two intrepid scientists who adore volcanoes as much as each other gift the world with something extraordinary.


It could be a scene from an apocalyptic sci-fi: a silver-suited figure dwarfed by a wall of lava spewing up from a scorched, moon-like landscape. But this is a documentary made from archives of 16mm clips, many previously unseen., The stunning, mind-boggling footage was captured by French volcanologists Katia and Maurice Krafft (whom some may recall from their cameo in Werner Herzog’s Into the Inferno). Famed across France in the 70s and 80s for their passion for filming volcanoes up close, the molten-storm-chasing couple contributed significantly to our understanding of the geological phenomena, building a legacy that weaves together science and the cinema.


Director Sara Dosa collates these clips into a tender, wryly humorous film that’s part-romance, part-PSA on the dangers of ignoring scientific warnings.


The Girl Eltávozott nap

Director: Márta Mészáros

Origin: Hungary (1968)

Director in Focus: Márta Mészáros | Feature

Language: English, French, Hungarian with English subtitles

Márta Mészáros’ stunning directorial debut – the first Hungarian film to have been made by a woman – announced the arrival of a vital new voice in European cinema.


Having grown up in a Budapest orphanage, Erzsi – now in her early 20s – decides to locate her biological mother, placing ads in newspapers and on the radio. When a woman replies, Erzsi travels to a village to meet her and her new family on the farm where they live, agreeing to pretend to be her niece. But Erzsi finds a person and a place insurmountably different from what she knows and what she was hoping for.


A Marble Travelogue


Director: Sean Wang

Origin: France, Greece, Hong Kong, Netherlands (2021)

Documentaries, The Natural World | Feature

Language: English, French, Greek, Mandarin with English subtitles

Genre: Documentary, Experimental

Follow the world’s favourite stone as it embarks on a cross-cultural odyssey – from quarry to gift shop – in this colossal tale of commodification.


For thousands of years, architects and sculptors have cherished snow-white Greek marble. Today, its most avid buyers are Chinese. As Greece sinks into debt, China is enjoying an economic boom – and because nothing says prosperity like marble, great slabs of stone travel oceans to China, where Quyang artisans carve them into imitations of Hellenic statues and columns. The remaining gravel becomes fridge magnets and other souvenirs that are shipped back to Europe, destined to be sold to Chinese tourists.


Director Sean Wang patiently observes the travels of this monumental material in moments that range from dizzyingly sublime to wryly funny.


Nelly & Nadine

Director: Magnus Gertten

Origin: Sweden (2022)

Documentaries | Feature

Language: English, French, Spanish, Swedish with English subtitles

Genre: Documentary , LGBTQIA+

Winner of the Berlinale’s Teddy Jury Award, this is the astonishing true story of two women who survived the horrors of WWII and smashed social taboos to pursue their love.


Nelly Mousset-Vos met Nadine Hwang on Christmas Eve 1944 in the most horrifying of places: the Nazi concentration camp for women, Ravensbrück. Instantly enamoured, the pair were later separated; after the war, they reunited and spent the rest of their lives together in Venezuela, their relationship hidden in plain sight. The truth is unearthed when Nelly’s granddaughter Sylvie finally opens a box in the attic – a treasure trove of history and a compelling personal record of bravery and romance.


Neptune Frost

Directors: Anisia Uzeyman, Saul Williams

Origin: Rwanda, USA (2021)

Bright Horizons | Feature

Language: English, French, Kinyarwanda, Swahili with English subtitles

Genre: Sci-Fi

A wildly ambitious, radically experimental Afrofuturist musical that transcends space, time and gender from visionary poet and musician Saul Williams.


Ten years in the making, this dazzlingly original, genre-defying debut from Williams and actor and playwright Anisia Uzeyman builds on the musician’s lyrical world-building and exploration of Black resistance while following in the Afrofuturist tradition of Sun Ra’s Space Is the Place and Ngozi Onwurah’s Welcome II the Terrordome. In a past, present and future Rwanda that unfolds like a dream, a young coltan miner encounters Neptune Frost, an intersex hacker who leads us down a trans-dimensional rabbit hole of post-colonial possible realities.


No Dogs or Italians Allowed Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens

Director: Alain Ughetto

Origin: Belgium, France, Italy, Portugal, Switzerland (2022)

Animation | Feature

Language: French, Italian with English subtitles

A beguiling, Annecy Jury Award–winning stop-motion animation that takes us on an adventure across the Alps – and into the big dreams of an Italian immigrant family.


In a small village in Ughettera in northern Italy at the turn of the 20th century, life for the Ughetto family has become unbelievably hard. Spurred on by aspirations for a better future – and by the promise of America, a mythical land where money apparently grows on trees – Luigi Ughetto sets out on a precarious trek across the snowy Alps, scaling cliffs and trekking through frigid terrain until he arrives in southern France. Settling there instead, he changes his family’s fate forever.


The film makes expansive and visionary use of not just family memories but a century of animated cinema – from early claymation to Wes Anderson – to deliver a story that is both unique and intimately familiar to generations of the Italian diaspora.



On the Morning You Wake (To the End of the World)

Directors: Arnaud Colinart, Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio, Mike Brett, Pierre Zandrowicz, Steve Jamison

Origin: France, UK, USA (2022)

XR, XR: Interactive | XR

Language: English, French

Genre: Animation , Documentary

On 13 January 2018, the citizens of Hawaii faced impending nuclear destruction. Or so they thought.


One Saturday morning in 2018, Hawaii’s 1.4 million inhabitants received a text message from the Emergency Management Agency urging them to take shelter, as a missile was headed straight for the archipelago. Cellular communication networks collapsed and panic took hold of the population; for Hawaiians and their loved ones – not to mention the rest of world – the growing urgency of today’s nuclear threat was thrown into stark relief. Interspersing retellings of this event with the horrors of Hiroshima and Pearl Harbour, the SXSW award-winning On the Morning You Wake (To the End of the World) offers a gripping, irrefutable contribution to the global conversation about nuclear disarmament and abolition.


Peter von Kant

Director: François Ozon

Origin: France (2021)

Europe, International | Feature

Language: French, German with English subtitles

Genre: Comedy , Drama , LGBTQIA+

A classic Rainer Werner Fassbinder film is reimagined as a story of sadomasochistic queer male desire – and a riff on the legendary director’s own tumultuous personal life. Peter von Kant has been freely adapted from one of the auteur’s most celebrated works, the arch lesbian melodrama The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (MIFF 1973).


In Cologne, 1972, petulant Peter lives ostentatiously in his ornate apartment, accompanied by his obsequious personal assistant, Karl. Recently heartbroken, the filmmaker has taken wantonly to the bottle. But his passions are soon diverted towards alluring young acting prodigy Amir, who in turn sees the older director as a stepping stone to stardom. And so, the unlikely pair begin a lopsided relationship, under Karl’s ever-watchful eye.


Return to Seoul Retour à Sèoul

Director: Davy Chou

Origin: Belgium, France, Germany, South Korea (2022)

Asia Pacific, International | Feature

Language: English, French, Korean with English subtitles

Genre: Coming of Age , Drama

An adopted young French woman journeys back and forth over several years to connect with her Korean roots – but she’s not sure what she’s looking for.


Freddie has lived in France all her life, having been adopted from South Korea when she was a baby. Now 25, she unexpectedly finds herself in Seoul for the first time and, on impulse, decides to contact the agency that handled her adoption. The trip proves turbulent, pushing and pulling Frankie between extreme feelings and behaviours and, over subsequent visits, between satisfying and disappointing encounters with her birth parents. All the while, she struggles with a culture she knows almost nothing about, and with an uneasy acceptance of herself.


Rewind & Play

Director: Alain Gomis

Origin: France, Germany (2022)

Documentaries, MIFF Play, Music on Film | Feature

Language: English, French with English subtitles

Genre: Documentary , Experimental , Music

Thelonious Monk broke the jazz mould. Here’s what happened when a French TV show tried to stuff him back into it.


On 15 December 1969, at the tail end of his European tour, legendary pianist Thelonious Monk spent two-and-a-half hours sweating on a Parisian studio stage under intense lights, filming a 30-minute episode of the French TV series Jazz Portrait. Miraculously, all the footage has survived – and now, French-Senegalese director Alain Gomis has intelligently assembled it into an uneasy, impressionistic collage that hums with postcolonial subtext.


Director Alain Gomis reveals Monk as a gentle man being provoked to his limits of politeness as dominating host Henri Renaud talks over and around his guest, sometimes resorting to unkind stereotype. Only when Monk is free to roam the keys does he elude the camera’s pitiless gaze and show why his talent was so special.



Director: Jean Luc Herbulot

Origin: Senegal (2021)

Night Shift | Feature

Language: French, Wolof with English subtitles

Genre: Action, Adventure, Horror, Thriller

Explosive action, supernatural horror and subversive politics collide in this electrifying Senegalese film about a trio of mercenaries marooned in a spooky coastal paradise.


Set against the backdrop of the 2003 coup d’état in Guinea-Bissau, this genre-scrambling, cross-continental thriller follows a trio of legendary mercenaries transporting a Mexican drug dealer to Dakar when their plane is forced to alight near the lush Sine-Saloum Delta region. This eerie coastal paradise soon turns malevolent when a Deaf woman and a cop suspiciously show up, tapping into something otherworldly and unleashing a manic adventure at breakneck momentum.


Congolese writer/director Jean Luc Herbulot’s hard and hectic hybrid work fires on all imaginable pistons, drawing on everything from spaghetti westerns, monster movies and chanbara flicks, to From Dusk Till Dawn and Predator. All of these various influences are then remixed into a distinctly pan-African cocktail that taps into the region’s mythology and folklore, including a transposed and reimagined take on the American frontier myth. With radiant visuals and multilingual dialogue (including the rarely depicted Wolof and sign language), Saloum is expansive, expertly executed and simply a total blast.


Salvatore: Shoemaker of Dreams

Director: Luca Guadagnino

Origin: Italy (2020)

Documentaries | Feature

Language: English, French, Italian with English subtitles

Genre: Documentary

Italian cinema luminary Luca Guadagnino tells the story of the iconic Salvatore Ferragamo, whose fancy footwear took him from the silver screen to the runway.


A precise cut through butter-soft leather. A fluid line of stitching. An elegantly tapered high heel. The making of a Salvatore Ferragamo shoe is its own kind of magic – but the shoemaker himself dreamed his way from a tiny village to an apprenticeship in Naples. Still just a teenager, he headed to the US, where he became an in-demand Hollywood costumer, shoeing everyone from Mary Pickford and Gloria Swanson to Charlie Chaplin and Rudolph Valentino. Navigating the turmoil of the Great Depression, fascism and war, Ferragamo began his second act: as an innovative designer who experimented with new forms and materials.


Filled with glamour, the beauty of craftsmanship and the spectre of Hollywood legend itself, this real-life rags-to-riches story is sure to tempt cinephiles and fashionistas alike.


Silent Land

Director: Aga Woszczynska

Origin: Czech Republic, Italy, Poland (2021)

Europe, International | Feature

Language: English, French, Italian, Polish with English subtitles

Genre: Drama

A couple’s sun-filled sojourn in Italy takes a dark, unexpected turn when their comfortable apathy is tested by the arrival of a migrant worker.


Anna and Adam are soaking up the sun on an unnamed Italian island. When they discover the garden pool at their rental isn’t working, they demand that it be repaired despite local water shortages and the ocean being right at their door. When an undocumented migrant worker shows up to fix it, his disquieting presence sets in motion a series of events that magnify not only the cracks in Anna and Adam’s marriage, but also their lack of empathy for the suffering of others.


Aga Woszczynska’s slow-burning, politically charged debut feature is an expression of her belief that “indifference is the plague of the modern day”.


Stars at noon

Director: Claire Denis

Origin: France (2022)

Headliners | Feature

Language: English, French with English subtitles

Genre: Crime, Drama, Romance, Thriller

Legendary French sensualist Claire Denis returns with a steamy, Cannes Grand Prix–winning romance-thriller starring Margaret Qualley and Joe Alwyn.


In this swooning, sexually charged adaptation of Denis Johnson’s 1986 novel, Qualley (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, MIFF 2019) stars as an American journalist drifting through a boozy haze in Nicaragua. While there, a side hustle in sexual favours leads her into a hot and heavy liaison with a mysterious English businessman (Alwyn, The Favourite, The Souvenir: Part II) – and into a web of political espionage from which both desperately seek to escape.


One of contemporary cinema’s greatest auteurs, Denis (Let the Sunshine In, MIFF 2017; Bastards, MIFF 2013; Beau Travail, MIFF 2000) infuses the source text’s drama with her singular brand of disquieting eroticism, updating its Nicaraguan Revolution backdrop to a pandemic-addled world haunted by the ghosts of colonisation and foreign co-dependence.


Unrest Unrueh

Director: Cyril Schäublin

Origin: Switzerland (2022)

Europe, International | Feature

Language: French, German, Swiss German with English subtitles

Genre: Drama

A playfully formalist study of a Swiss anarchist movement at the dawn of global capitalism, awarded Best Director in the Berlinale’s Encounters section.


Writer/director/editor Cyril Schäublin (Those Who Are Fine) imagines an episode in the real-life visit of Russian polymath and activist Pyotr Kropotkin to Switzerland in the 1870s, wherein he chances upon the watchmaking enclave of Saint-Imier in the Jura Mountains. There, he falls in love with Josephine, an assembly-line worker at the local factory, and decides to sow the seeds of anarchy.


(Dis)order is a key theme of this deceptively placid film: Josephine is responsible for installing the crucial titular unrueh (‘unrest’) wheel that holds the town’s timekeeping mechanism in balance, while Saint-Imier itself exists through a precarious balance between its internationally connected radicalised workers and their not-quite-ascendant capitalist masters.


We, Students! Nous, étudiants!

Director: Rafiki Fariala

Origin: Congo, France (2022)

Documentaries | Feature

Language: Sango, and French with English subtitles

Genre: Documentary

Viewer Advice: Contains depictions of violence towards animals and themes of sexual violence.

An extremely rare look at university life in the Central African Republic as four students are thrown personal and emotional curveballs on their path to a better future.


Nestor, Aaron and Benjamin and Rafiki (the film’s director) are friends and students at the CAR’s University of Bangui. They’re trying their hardest to survive in a society that is seemingly tearing itself apart at the seams: around every corner lurk danger, corruption and sexual harassment, which they must navigate along with overcrowded classrooms, romantic entanglements, and worries about money and employment. But through it all shines their hope that, one day, they can set things right.


We, Students! is the first film from the Central African Republic to screen at the Berlinale, and only the second ever piece of cinema produced in the landlocked country. Amid unrest and economic turmoil across the nation – where cameras are unfamiliar sights (Rafiki was arrested three times during production) – it’s a miracle that this film exists at all.




WHERE: various cinemas in Melbourne

WHEN: 4 – 21 August 2022 (in cinemas) & 11- 28 August 2022 (MIFF PLAY)

HOW: Tickets via the official MIFF 2022 website: https://miff.com.au/

HOW MUCH: Various options available for single or multiple tickets


MIFF 2022 Share Pass

12 standard festival admissions, which you can share with up to three (3) friends per session at MIFF 70. That means you can book two people into six sessions, three people into four sessions, four people into three sessions, or any combination that suits you and yours.

Full: $199

Concession: $185

MIFF Members: $170


MIFF 2022 Discovery Pass

Five standard festival sessions, plus two (2) bonus off-peak sessions, at MIFF 70 – just for you.

Full: $105

Concession: $95

MIFF Members: $85


MIFF 2022 Deluxe Membership

Allows you to access a single ticket to every single film showing at Melbourne International Film Festival 2022: $580


MIFF 2022 Peak pricing (weekends and weekdays after 5pm)

Full: $24.50

Concession: $20

MIFF Members: $18.50

Group: $18.50 (per person, 10 people or more)


MIFF 2022 Off-peak pricing (weekdays before 5pm)

Full: $21.50

Concession: $18.50

MIFF Members: $16

Group: $16.50 (per person, 10 people or more)


MIFF 2022 Premium pricing (weekends and weekdays after 5pm)

Full: $32

Concession: $30

MIFF Members: $28

Group: $28 (per person, 10 people or more)


Which films are you going to see at MIFF 2022?



Enter your email to subscribe to new article notifications about all things French and francophone in Australia

Related Posts

Matilda Marseillaise

Discover more from Matilda Marseillaise

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading