Film Series: Commemorating May 1968 (2022)

Several venues all over the country will be celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of May 68. This article will be updated as more events will be announced.

Here’s a write up from the New Yorker about the cycle at the FIAF and the Metrograph.

Columbia University, Maison Française NYC
April 12 to 25, 2018

May Fools (Milou en Mai)
Louis Malle, 1990, 107 min
Maison Française East Gallery, Buell Hall
Columbia University, New York, NY
April 12, 6:30 PM
An eccentric French family meets in the country for the funeral of their matriarch (Paulette Dubost), which takes place at the same time as the 1968 student revolts in Paris.

The Cinema of May 68 (Le Cinéma de Mai 68)
Maison Française East Gallery, Buell Hall
Columbia Univeristy, New York, NY
April 19, 6:30 PM
A selection of short documentaries filmed in May 1968.
Films in French without English subtitles.

In the Intense Now (No Intenso Agora)
João Moreira Salles, 2017, 127 min
Maison Française East Gallery, Buell Hall
Columbia Univeristy, New York, NY
April 25, 6:30 PM
A.O. Scott says viewers “will find solace, enlightenment and surprise in João Moreira Salles’sIn the Intense Now, a bittersweet, ruminative documentary essay composed of footage from the era of the 1960s, accompanied by thoughtful, disarmingly personal voice-over narration […]”

All films are in French with English subtitles.

More information available through Maison Française

UnionDocs Center for Documentary Art, NYC
"Frozen Revolutions"
April 27, 2018

UnionDocs presents an evening of screenings and discussion examining the French labor movement with Mitchell Abidor, author ofMay Made Me: An Oral History of the 1968 Uprising in France, and programmer Steve Macfarlane.

(Video) May 68: When France took a stand

Alongside clips from the rare and newly digitizedCinétracts, UnionDocs will showThe Return to Work at the Wonder Factory, a ten-minute film showing an enraged worker refusing to return to work in June 1968.

Here's a write up from the New York Times about the program.

The Return to Work at the Wonder Factory
1968, 10 min
UnionDocs, Brooklyn, NY
April 27, 7:30 PM
In May of 1968 work starts again, unions pretend to claim victory. At the Wonder factory everything is also back to normal. Suddenly a woman dares to rebel, she says that she does not want to return to work.
In French without English subtitles.

Cinétracts
1968, 90 min
UnionDocs, Brooklyn, NY
April 27, 7:30 PM
A series of 41 documentary shorts, directed by several famous French filmmakers and each running between two and four minutes. Each “tract” espouses a leftist political viewpoint through the filmed depiction of real-life events, including workers’ strikes and the events of Paris in May 1968.
In French with English subtitles.

More information available through Union Docs

French Institute Alliance Française, NYC
"Remembering May 1968"
May 8 to 29, 2018

What happened in May 1968 and in the years after? 50 years later, what are the lessons of that era of political and civil unrest? Join us for a series of French documentaries on these legendary times that resulted in far-reaching social and political change across the globe.

Les années 68
Don Kent, 2018, 2 x 90 min
FIAF Florence Gould Hall
55 East 59th Street, New York, NY 10022
May 8, 4:00 PM Part 1 (La Vague)
May 8, 7:30 PM Part 2 (L'explosion)
Part 2 can be enjoyed without seeing Part 1. 7:30pm screening followed by a panel discussion.
A time capsule full of evocative sights and sounds, narrated by leading historians and political activists, Les années 68 effortlessly connects apparently discrete events to form a blazingly timely analysis of a decade that shaped the way we live now.

Tous au Larzac
Christian Rouaud, 2011, 120 min
FIAF Florence Gould Hall
55 East 59th Street, New York, NY 10022
May 15, 4 & 7:30 PM
Tous au Larzac weaves present-day interviews with veteran activists, archival footage of mass protests, and gorgeous photography of the Larzac’s windswept limestone plateaus to tell an inspiring tale of non-violent resistance to obtuse governmental action.

Feminist Documentaries
Carole Roussopoulos, 1975 & 1976, 46 min & 55 min
FIAF Florence Gould Hall
55 East 59th Street, New York, NY 10022
May 22, 4 & 7:30 PM
Swiss filmmaker Carole Roussopoulos was a pioneer who used newly-available portable video technology to give voice to a wide range of social movements and underrepresented groups in France and around the world. Join us for a rare screening of two of Roussopoulos’ documentaries, highlighting feminist actions in the aftermath of ’68 : The Prostitutes of Lyon Speak & Maso and Miso Go Boating.

(Video) Celebrating 50 Years of Herbie The Love Bug

Mourir à trente ans
Romain Goupil, 1982, 97 min
FIAF Florence Gould Hall
55 East 59th Street, New York, NY 10022
May 29, 4 & 7:30 PM
7:30pm screening followed by Q&A with director Romain Goupil.
Through the story of his friendship with Michel Recanati, a communist student leader who died by his own hand in 1978, filmmaker and activist Romain Goupil crafts an idiosyncratic, moving portrait of the generation that took to the streets in May ’68, capturing the surprising mix of anti-authoritarian zaniness, dogmatic political radicalism, and bursts of despair that characterized these youthful idealists.

All films are in French with English subtitles.

More information available through FIAF

Metrograph, NYC
"May '68:The Struggle Continues"
May 11 to 25, 2018

Beginning May 11, Metrograph will present "May '68: The Struggle Continues," six programs with work by Jean-Luc Godard, Philippe Garrel, and more. Fifty years ago, in the merry month of May, Charles de Gaulle’s French Fifth Republic was teetering on the edge of out-and-out upheaval, as workers went on strike and students took to the streets, erecting paving stone barricades as though it were 1789 all over again. The aim was nothing less than a new world; the result was, in the final analysis, mostly more of the same—though an entire generation would be marked for life by the moment’s sense of boundless potential, as well as the crippling comedown that followed. Movies were the medium of the ’68 generation, and so its impression is felt acutely both in films made in the heat of the moment, as well as those revisiting it from the distance of years. In tribute to this important anniversary is a selection of works, many not screened in the US since a 2003 program, and newly translated for this series, delivering to the tumultuous present something of the dizzying possibility and devastating destitution of that long-ago-and-still-present half-made revolution.

A Film Like Any Other (Un film comme des autres)
Jean-Luc Godard, 1968, 108 min
Metrograph, New York, NY
May 13, 1.10 PM & 5:30 PM
Godard’s farewell—temporary, as it happened—to working as an individual director before submerging himself into the hivemind Dziga-Vertov group, this is a provocative, fearless, frustrating diptych film, wildly inventive (or deliberately aggressive and challenging, depending on point of view) in its use of sound, image, and structure (identical sequences repeated twice), is comprised of footage of students and workers conversing outside striking factories, about the aims of the ’68 uprising.

Reprise
Hervé Le Roux, 1996, 192 min
Metrograph, New York, NY
Showtimes coming soon
In the summer of ’68, as France returned to a normalcy that for many was a death sentence, film students captured the reactions of workers at the end of a strike at a factory in Saint-Ouen, among them an inconsolably angry young woman howling her refusal to return to work. Twenty-eight years later, filmmaker Le Roux embarked on an epic search to discover what had happened to this unreconciled woman, one face in the crowd of hundreds, upon whose image the director begins to lovingly fixate over the course of an exhaustive hunt that reveals much of France in the mid- 90s.

Regular Lovers
Philippe Garrel, 2005, 183 min
Metrograph, New York, NY
May 24, 8.30 PM
After decades of distortion and misinformation on both the French right and left, to further agendas and re-write history, Garrel felt compelled to portray the May ’68 period as it was experienced by someone who was there, and correct the historical record for future generations. François is our guide (played by Garrel’s son Louis), a young poet who goes from the exhilaration of the barricades to the exhaustion of drug addiction and aimlessness.

All films are in French with English subtitles.

More screenings and information available through Metrograph

(Video) Mary Hopkin - Those Were The Days - 1968

Anthology Film Archives, NYC
"1968 On Screen"

May 24 to June 4, 2018

This extensive film series shines a spotlight on 1968 and the extraordinary political and social events that took place throughout the world in that most tumultuous year. Presented in concert with Metrograph, which will host screenings focusing on the May ’68 protests and their aftermath in France, “1968 On Screen” focuses its attention on events elsewhere.

More information available through Anthology

Embassy of France - La Maison Française, DC
"Revolution in the Air"
April 10 to May 22, 2018

1968 was a year of deep social and political change worldwide. In France, the Spring of 1968 witnessed the largest social movement ever experienced by the country in contemporary history. A movement that would culturally, socially and politically transform French society. To commemorate the half-centennial of May '68,the Film SeriesRevolution in the Airfeatures three films - and three different perspectives - tracing back the events that shaped a generation.

A Grin Without A Cat (Le Fond de l’air est rouge)
Chris Marker, 1977, 180min
La Maison Française, Washington, D.C.
April 10, 7:00 PM
Beginning in 1967 and spanning a decade of political upheaval, this groundbreaking documentary darts at breakneck speed between revolutionary hot spots on four continents.

Godard Mon Amour (Le Redoutable)
Michel Hazanavicius, 2017, 102 min
La Maison Française, Washington, D.C.
May 8, 7:00 PM
Paris, 1967. Jean-Luc Godard (Louis Garrel), the leading filmmaker of his generation, is shootingLa Chinoisewith the woman he loves, Anne Wiazemsky (Stacy Martin), 20 years his junior. They are happy, attractive, in love. They marry. But the film’s reception unleashes a profound self-examination in Jean-Luc…

Après mai (Something In the Air)
Olivier Assaysas, 2012, 122 min
La Maison Française, Washington, D.C.
May 22, 7:00 PM
Something in the Airtells the story of the after-May ‘68. It shows a group of high school students taken in by the political and creative turmoil of the times. Through romantic encounters and artistic discoveries, they will have to make definitive choices in order to find their place in these turbulent times.

All films are in French with English subtitles.

More information available through La Maison Française

National Gallery of Art, Washington DC
"Paris, May '68: Zanzibar and Philippe Garrel"
May 12 to 27, 2018

During the volatile late 1960s in Paris, the filmmaking collective known as Zanzibar began creating outsider underground movies, many of which are now lost or neglected. The group (consisting of Philippe Garrel, Jackie Raynal, Serge Bard, Daniel Pommereulle, Olivier Mosset, Frédéric Pardo, Patrick Deval, Caroline de Bendern, Zouzou, and one or two others) resembled a clique of Warhol Factoryesque characters — artists, writers, actors, and models, a few of whom had actually worked at the Factory. Though all were cinephiles, jointly they had only modest movie-making experience. Yet the Zanzibar films, with their refreshing lack of regard for revenue, are infused with the countercultural energy and restlessness of May 1968. The first three films of this cycle are:

(Video) War and Peace | Trailer | Opens May 24

Détruisez-vous
Serge Bard, 1968, 75 min
National Gallery of Art, East Building Auditorium, Washington, D.C.
May 12, 2:30 PM
A student of sociology, Serge Bard was dissatisfied with his university life and decided to drop out. In the process, he began experimenting with a movie camera. Foreshadowing the growing spirit of revolt, Bard cast in this early film the artist and activist Alain Jouffroy who plays a professor lecturing to a nearly empty classroom on the necessity of revolution.

Le Révélateur preceded by Les enfants désaccordés
Philippe Garrel, 1968, 67 min
National Gallery of Art, East Building Auditorium, Washington, D.C.
May 12, 4:30 PM
Silent and dreamlike, Le Révélateur was filmed in the Black Forest by cinematographer Michel Fournier. “[Director Philippe] Garrel permitted the greatest liberty to improvise, with minimal lighting and an extremely sensitive film stock.” Bernadette Lafont and Laurent Terzieff play a couple who wander the landscape with their young child, menaced by some unknown force.

Les amants réguliers preceded by Actua 1
Philippe Garrel, 2005, 178 min
National Gallery of Art, East Building Auditorium, Washington, D.C.
May 19, 2:30 PM
A participant observer in the events of May ’68, Philippe Garrel used his son Louis as his leading actor and the classically trained Parisian cinematographer William Lubtchansky — a favorite among the directors of the French new wave — to shoot this poetic evocation of the era.

All films are in French with English subtitles.

More films and information available through National Gallery of Art

Chicago University
"50 years later: Memories of May '68"
May 18 to June 1, 2018

Ciné-Tracts and Soulevement de la Jeunesse
Ciné-Tracts: Anonymous directors including Chris Marker, Jean Luc Godard &Alain Resnais;Soulevement de la Jeunesse:Maurice Lemaître,1968,85 min.
Logan Center for the Arts - University of Chicago
May 18, 7:00 PM
In the wake of the uprisings of May 1968, French filmmakers addressed the turmoil through short political and experimental works. Maurice Lemaître’s Soulèvement de la jeunesse juxtaposes footage of the uprisings with an abstract soundtrack of Lettrist spoken word and song. Meanwhile, filmmakers including Chris Marker, Alain Resnais, and Jean-Luc Godard anonymously created silent, political “ciné-tracts” using leftist and French modernist film techniques.

Mourir à 30 ans (Half of A Life)
Romain Goupil, 1982, 97 min
Logan Center for the Arts - University of Chicago
June 1, 7:00 PM
Rarely seen in the United States, Romain Goupil’s documentary chronicles his and his friends’ firsthand experiences as militant, teenage Trotskyites in 1960s France during the heyday of French student movements that culminated with the events of May 1968. Michel Recanati was a part of Goupil’s activist entourage who committed suicide in 1978. Prompted by his death, Goupil crafts a vibrantly raw autobiographical essay-style film that uses found footage and a range of sources including photographs, home movies, and interviews.

All films are in French with English subtitles.

More information available through Film Studies Center, Chicago University

(Video) The Flight Of Apollo 7 (1968)

FAQs

What historical event happened in May 1968? ›

events of May 1968, student revolt that began in a suburb of Paris and was soon joined by a general strike eventually involving some 10 million workers. During much of May 1968, Paris was engulfed in the worst rioting since the Popular Front era of the 1930s, and the rest of France was at a standstill.

What happened in May 1968 Paris? ›

Beginning in May 1968, a period of civil unrest occurred throughout France, lasting some seven weeks and punctuated by demonstrations, general strikes, as well as the occupation of universities and factories. At the height of events, which have since become known as May 68, the economy of France came to a halt.

On what dates of May 1968 did second Tuesday fall? ›

May 21, 1968 (Tuesday)

Why was 1968 such an important year? ›

Kennedy. Other events that made history that year include the Vietnam War's Tet Offensive, riots in Washington, DC, the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1968, and heightened social unrest over the Vietnam War, values, and race. The National Archives holds records documenting the turbulent time during 1968.

Why is 1968 considered a year of upheaval? ›

1968 was a year of serious upheaval in the United States, marked by the Tet Offensive in Vietnam, increasing anti-war protests, the assassinations of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy, and a tumultuous election.

Which of the following were causes for the protests that erupted in May 1968? ›

Multiple factors created the protests in 1968. Many were in response to perceived injustice by governments—in the USA, against the Johnson administration—and were in opposition to the draft, and the United States' involvement in the Vietnam War.

What was 1968 like? ›

The year 1968 remains one of the most tumultuous single years in history, marked by historic achievements, shocking assassinations, a much-hated war and a spirit of rebellion that swept through countries all over the world.

What was happening in June 1968? ›

This Day in History - June 5, 1968, Senator Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated in the Ambassador Hotel by 24-year old Palestinian Sirhan Sirhan. He was shot in the head and died early the next morning.

What day was Memorial Day on in 1968? ›

Johnson, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate Memorial Day, Thursday, May 30, 1968, as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each locality at eleven o'clock in the morning of that day as a time to unite in such prayer.

Was there a leap year in 1968? ›

There are no Leap Year events during 1968.

How many days were there in 1968? ›

The year 1968 has 366 days.

Who was president in May 1968? ›

The following is a timeline of the presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson from January 1, 1968, to January 20, 1969.

Who was assassinated in 1968? ›

Martin Luther King Jr., an African-American clergyman and civil rights leader, was fatally shot at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 4, 1968, at 6:01 p.m. CST. He was rushed to St.

What war was happening in 1968? ›

On January 30, 1968, North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops launched the Tet Offensive against South Vietnamese and United States targets. The Tet Offensive became a major turning point in the Vietnam War.

How many years ago was 1968 today? ›

1968: 50 years ago | Smithsonian Institution.

What was happening in 1968 in the US? ›

Martin Luther King Jr. is shot dead at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. In response, riots erupt in major American cities, lasting for several days afterward. Apollo Program: Apollo 6 is launched, the second and last unmanned test flight of the Saturn V launch vehicle.

What were the 1968 riots about? ›

King's assassination in 1968, the issues of civil rights, employment discrimination, poverty, racial profiling and police brutality lay at the center of both riots.

How many riots were in 1968? ›

President Lyndon B. Johnson called in the National Guard to the city on April 5, 1968, to assist the police department in quelling the unrest. Ultimately, 13 people were killed, with approximately 1,000 people injured and over 6,100 arrested.
...
1968 Washington, D.C., riots.
1968 Washington, D.C. riots
Injuries1,098
Arrested6,100+
10 more rows

What were the 3 main protests of the 1960s? ›

All of the protest movements of the 1960s captured public attention and raised questions that were important to the nation. The civil rights movement, the women's movement, and the gay rights movement demanded that Americans consider equality for all citizens in the United States.

What inventions were made in 1968? ›

Top 5 Scientific Achievements from 1968
  1. The birth of Intel.
  2. The discovery of pulsars. ...
  3. Georges Charpak develops the multiwire proportional chamber for particle detection. ...
  4. Apollo 8 is the first manned spacecraft to orbit the moon. ...
  5. Patent for the jacuzzi whirlpool hot tub granted. ...
24 Jul 2018

What happened in the UK in 1968? ›

1–2 July – July 1968 England and Wales dust fall storms. 4 July – Alec Rose returns to Southsea from a 354-day single-handed round-the-world trip for which he receives a knighthood the following day. 10 July – Floods in South West England. 17 July – The Beatles animated film Yellow Submarine debuts in London.

What was happening in July 1968? ›

By July 4, 1968, America was exposed to the brutal reality of Vietnam's Tet Offensive and My Lai Massacre. Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy were assassinated; riots broke out across the country. Young Americans snubbed tradition and authority.

What tragedy happened in August 1968? ›

1968 Red Square demonstration
Place of the demonstration at the Red Square in Moscow
Date25 August 1968
TimeNoon
LocationLobnoye Mesto, Red Square, Moscow
CauseWarsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia
1 more row

What was happening in November 1968? ›

The most widely felt earthquake in United States history, noticed by millions of people in portions of 23 states, struck at 11:02 in the morning Central Time, with an epicenter in Hamilton County, Illinois, near the village of Broughton.

Which of the following were causes for the protests that erupted in May 1968? ›

Multiple factors created the protests in 1968. Many were in response to perceived injustice by governments—in the USA, against the Johnson administration—and were in opposition to the draft, and the United States' involvement in the Vietnam War.

What was 1968 like? ›

The year 1968 remains one of the most tumultuous single years in history, marked by historic achievements, shocking assassinations, a much-hated war and a spirit of rebellion that swept through countries all over the world.

What was happening in June 1968? ›

This Day in History - June 5, 1968, Senator Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated in the Ambassador Hotel by 24-year old Palestinian Sirhan Sirhan. He was shot in the head and died early the next morning.

How many people died in the Tlatelolco massacre? ›

According to U.S. national security archives, American analyst Kate Doyle documented the deaths of 44 people; however, estimates of the actual death toll range from 300 to 400, with eyewitnesses reporting hundreds dead.

What were the 1968 riots about? ›

King's assassination in 1968, the issues of civil rights, employment discrimination, poverty, racial profiling and police brutality lay at the center of both riots.

How many riots were in 1968? ›

President Lyndon B. Johnson called in the National Guard to the city on April 5, 1968, to assist the police department in quelling the unrest. Ultimately, 13 people were killed, with approximately 1,000 people injured and over 6,100 arrested.
...
1968 Washington, D.C., riots.
1968 Washington, D.C. riots
Injuries1,098
Arrested6,100+
10 more rows

What were the 3 main protests of the 1960s? ›

All of the protest movements of the 1960s captured public attention and raised questions that were important to the nation. The civil rights movement, the women's movement, and the gay rights movement demanded that Americans consider equality for all citizens in the United States.

Who was president in May 1968? ›

The following is a timeline of the presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson from January 1, 1968, to January 20, 1969.

Who was assassinated in 1968? ›

Martin Luther King Jr., an African-American clergyman and civil rights leader, was fatally shot at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 4, 1968, at 6:01 p.m. CST. He was rushed to St.

What inventions were made in 1968? ›

Top 5 Scientific Achievements from 1968
  1. The birth of Intel.
  2. The discovery of pulsars. ...
  3. Georges Charpak develops the multiwire proportional chamber for particle detection. ...
  4. Apollo 8 is the first manned spacecraft to orbit the moon. ...
  5. Patent for the jacuzzi whirlpool hot tub granted. ...
24 Jul 2018

What was happening in July 1968? ›

By July 4, 1968, America was exposed to the brutal reality of Vietnam's Tet Offensive and My Lai Massacre. Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy were assassinated; riots broke out across the country. Young Americans snubbed tradition and authority.

What tragedy happened in August 1968? ›

1968 Red Square demonstration
Place of the demonstration at the Red Square in Moscow
Date25 August 1968
TimeNoon
LocationLobnoye Mesto, Red Square, Moscow
CauseWarsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia
1 more row

What major event occurred in Vietnam in 1968? ›

In late January, 1968, during the lunar new year (or “Tet”) holiday, North Vietnamese and communist Viet Cong forces launched a coordinated attack against a number of targets in South Vietnam.

Why was lighting the Olympic torch significant in 1968? ›

The Olympic flame was lit in Olympia, Greece, and retraced the steps of Christopher Columbus, discoverer of the New World. This theme celebrated the link between Latin-American and Mediterranean civilizations. At the end of the relay the Olympic cauldron was for the first time lit by a female athlete.

What happened in Mexico City ten days before the start of the 1968 Games? ›

Ten days before the Games were to open, students protesting the Mexican government's use of funds for the Olympics rather than for social programs were surrounded in the Plaza of Three Cultures by the army and fired upon. More than 200 protesters were killed and over a thousand injured.

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