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Love Is Strange (MIFF 2014) director Ira Sachs embraces the art of French cinema in this queer, Paris-set musing on a complicated relationship.

Fast-rising star Franz Rogowski – who also appears in this year’s Bright Horizons contender Disco Boy – plays Tomas, an impetuous Fassbinder-like director who has fallen into a funk with his husband (charmingly played by Ben Whishaw, also in MIFF 2023’s Bad Behaviour). When magnetic schoolteacher Agathe (Blue Is the Warmest Colour’s Adèle Exarchopoulos) lands on the scene and catches Tomas’s roving eye on the dance floor, things soon get emotionally messy.

Sachs (Frankie, MIFF 2019; Little Men, MIFF 2016) and regular co-writer Mauricio Zacharias lean into the French New Wave’s steamiest tropes in this tempestuous love triangle that brews within the Parisian indie film scene. Debuting at Sundance, this mature, mordantly funny look at sexual fluidity and wavering commitment was nominated for both the Teddy Award and the Panorama Audience Award at the Berlinale. And with handsome cinematography by Saint Laurent lenser Josée Deshaies, Passages will no doubt be an intriguing affair to remember.

“Tender in its brutality and unsparingly brutal in its tenderness … Raw and resonant.” – IndieWire