History & Biographies
A poetic journey to the origins of Brazil
Menelaw Sete, the "Brazilian Picasso", dreamed of a time when his country was a paradise, populated by people living in communion with nature. The arrival of greedy men from far away upset everything. He saw the red from the blood they shed and the black of the men torn from Africa. He saw Anahi, a young Indian girl, and Mountaga Bayo, an African prince enslaved. Their paths eventually crossed and they fell in love.
In this film, Menelaw walks in their footsteps, from the shores of the Bay of All Saints to the forests of Bahia and, through his painting, tells this improbable encounter, the legend of the birth of his country.
Between past and present, Brazil's oldest colonial settlement reveals the secrets of its history and the descendants of its oppressed people.
CASTLE TOWERS IN JAPAN [7x30’]
Symbols of authority
In the age of civil strife in Japan, a castle was a proof of authority for the "daimyo", the feudal lord, and an imposing tower was its symbol.
There are 12 castle towers still remaining Japan after surviving war-torn era, repeatedly restored or rebuilt.
KOREAN BROKEN FAMILIES [52’]
The heartbraking reunion
The diplomatic relations between North Korea and South Korea are warming up but there is still a deep wound going back to the time of the Cold War: the separation of refugees’ families.
Lee Geumsum was a young mother when she had to flee the Korean War in 1951. She wandered several hundreds of kilometres hunted by famine and diseases when, one morning, she had to stop to feed her daughter who was only a few months old, losing sight of her 4-year-old son. She never saw him again.
Thanks to the reunion of families organised by the two countries, this 91-year-old lady will see again a son she had lost 68 years ago.
MASTERS OF REICH [4x52’]
Making silent archives speak
For the first time in history, thanks to artificial intelligence and modern methods of deciphering, lip tracking reveals what the masters of the Reich and their acolytes were really saying to each other during the Second World War in all these archives that have remained silent to this day.
After colorization, this series offers the viewer an unpublished reading of the archives of that period.
NORTH KOREA VS USA: A NUCLEAR CHICKEN GAME [52’]
The winning survival strategy of the Kims
In North Korea, the Kims’ communist dynasty has tried to become a nuclear power since the Cold War. While it kept unrelentingly at its plan, the USA went through 13 Presidents, each with its own vision. This became the Kims' big advantage.
This film is the riveting account of a 60-year deception plan which reached its climax with Trump historical acknowledgment of the North Korean regime
RETRO ARCHITECTURE TOWNS [2x30’]
Yokohama and Tokyo have always been business centers and trading bases since the early Meiji period.
Some neighbourhoods have kept their historical architecture, making them testimonies of the time passing by, while subjected to the influence of modern western-style buildings.
THE MASTER OF FORTRESSES [52’]
Vauban is probably the best military architect and engineer in History.
Endlessly copied around the world, his unique system of fortifications protected France from invasions, making Louis XIV the most powerful monarch of his time. The Vauban system consists in an iron belt of 180 fortresses scattered around the country each of them rivalling in ingenuity and technical inventivity.
THE SEA OF ITAMI JUN [112’]
The architect of the elements
Itami Jun is Japanese-born Korean architect.
In this film, he revisits the places he cherished, more specifically the thoughtful and sensitive architectural works he designed.
His original and innovative approach has been revealed in the design of ensembles and by a meticulous choice of materials. Favouring wood, stone and metal, he has revived the tradition of harmony with nature for a more humane architecture.
Also available as a 52'
THE SEA OF ITAMI JUN [52’]
The architect of the elements
Itami Jun is Japanese-born Korean architect.
In this film, he revisits the places he cherished, more specifically the thoughtful and sensitive architectural works he designed.
His original and innovative approach has been revealed in the design of ensembles and by a meticulous choice of materials. Favouring wood, stone and metal, he has revived the tradition of harmony with nature for a more humane architecture.
Also available as a 112'
WORLD HERITAGE CANAL [52’]
An architectural wonder and a technical prowess
In the 17th century, Louis XIV financed the digging of a canal connecting the Atlantic to the Mediterranean, the second largest construction of his reign after Versailles.
Using the latest technology of its time, the beautifully conceived Canal du Midi is among the oldest functioning canal in Europe and listed as a Unesco World Heritage site.
1938, THE RACIAL LAWS OF FASCISM [62’]
The Jews of Italy
Eighty years ago, Italy didn’t have a tradition of anti-Semitism but the fascist propaganda nudged it into accepting the mistreatment of a minority which had been living in the country for centuries.
This film shed a new light on this dramatic period when, for the first time, mass media played a major role in one of the most tragic racial persecution in the history of humankind.
1944 LE HAVRE UNDER THE ALLIES’ BOMBS [52’]
A war crime kept under wrap
Three months after D-Day, on a morning of September 1944, people of Normandy woke up in shock.
Despite the German offer to evacuate civilians, Le Havre and its inhabitants had been crushed under British bombs in the deadliest bombardment conducted over France during WWII. The Germans were spared while the city lost 2,000 people.
Did the Allied Forces really need to level a city they came to liberate?
A HOUSE OF ITS TIME [8x24’]
Asia heritage residences
This 8-part architecture series highlights the magnificent residential heritage houses of Asia like the black-and-white houses of colonial Singapore, the joglos in Indonesia, the plantation bungalows in Malaysia or the country manors in Sri Lanka.
Architects, historians and conservationists let us in on the building secrets of these houses, while residents share personal stories of life within these walls.
A STOLEN LIFE [52’]
Spain is facing a dreadful scandal
Over the span of 40 years, 200,000 to 300,000 babies have been stolen from their parents at birth at the clinic to be sold to couples in search of children to adopt. These foster parents had to comply with ultra-Catholic, conservative right-wing ideology. Moreover, this traffic was conducted by doctors and nuns with the help of nurses, lawyers and officials. The silence that covered this crime broke and tens of thousands of alleged victims are now seeking their natural mothers, children, brothers or sisters. Rallied in associations, they call for truth and justice.
AF447 RIO-PARIS: WHAT REALLY HAPPENED? [70’]
The detailed story of the Air France Rio-Paris flight, its crew, and its passengers
At 2.14am on June 1, 2009, Air France flight 447 crashed into the Atlantic killing all 288 passengers on board making it one of the deadliest plane crashes of all time.
To this day, the fatal course of events remains without explanation despite the technical reports, the investigations even with the recovery of flight recorders from the far bottom of the ocean.
What really happened? What about the human factor? Were the problems only technical? Can this accident happen again? To what extent are we safe when we board a plane?
AL PACINO, THE RELUCTANT STAR [52’]
The many faces of an icon
Al Pacino made it onto the big stages, from Broadway to Hollywood, but, being extremely shy, is still somehow a mystery.
At the beginning of the 70’s, he got his first international success as Michael Corleone in "The Godfather" which was followed by legendary screen heroes such as drug lord Tony Montana, New York cop Serpico, bank robber Sonny Wortzig or blind colonel Frank Slade.
At nearly 80 years of age, Al Pacino continues to show his versatility by appearing both on stage and in front of the camera. He is a man with many faces. A gifted actor and a reluctant star.
AL QAEDA: WORLD TERRORISM [52’]
The birth of the jihadist movement
The years from 2001 to 2011 have been plagued by Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden. But to understand how this former business student from a wealthy Saudi family became the leader of the international jihadist movement, we must go back in time and dive into the various episodes of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
After the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and 9 years of relentless hunting, Osama bin Laden was killed by US commandos in May 2011. Although his death didn’t mean the end of Al-Qaeda it did speed up the decline of an organization challenged by the emergence of ISIS.
ALLENDE: AN IDEOLOGY BEING SHOT DOWN [52’]
An unwelcome visionnary
In 1970, Salvador Allende became the first elected socialist president in Chile. Three years later, the coup d'état led by General Pinochet with the support of the United States ended his mandate. Salvador Allende killed himself in his besieged palace. His proposals disrupted a world split into two distinct blocks. Allende was a nuisance and his vision unwelcome.
This film is a thriller, an investigation between the present and the past to understand what remains of his project.
ANGELA MERKEL, 3 DAYS IN SEPTEMBER [52’]
The migrants crisis
On the first weekend of September 2015, Angela Merkel decided to let the refugees and asylum seekers who were stuck in Budapest enter Germany. Her aim was to prevent a humanitarian crisis that was looming due to the influx of migrants.
Did Angela Merkel have a choice?
What factors triggered this influx of migrants?
How did they experience the events of early September?
Has their situation improved today?
ANGELA MERKEL, THE UNEXPECTED [52’]
The world's most powerful woman
Angela Merkel is often described as the new Iron Lady and referred to as “mother”. But who is this woman? What are the facts behind her story?
Interviews with childhood friends, long time companions, business executives and global political leaders reveal how an East German daughter of a protestant pastor worked her way up to become the most powerful woman on the planet. Her modesty combined with strong will and strategic approach left many to underestimate Angela Merkel and thus paving the way for her rise to power.
Also available as 90mns
ARCHEOLOGEEKS IN BAGAN [45’]
Bringing an universal heritage back to life
Some buildings, sites and structures are historical wonders. Their very names are legendary and their stories epic and surprising.
Yet, these treasures are threatened by wars, financial pressure, property developers and climate hazards.
Today, a new breed of archeologists is using modern technologies to bring this universal heritage back to life, turning them into "archeologeeks". They make the impossible possible by bringing these hidden treasures back to life.
ARTHUR MILLER, A MAN OF HIS CENTURY [60’]
One of the greatest dramatists
Born in New York in 1915, Arthur Miller has created over the course of seven decades some of the most memorable stage plays in the world of literature, becoming one of the greatest dramatists of the century. He never stopped to be curious and was always pushing his own limits.
This is a portrait of a fascinating man who, by marrying Marilyn Monroe, turned into a real American icon as their couple embodied the glamour, success and love of the 20th century.
BECOMING CHANEL [52’]
The story of a myth
Chanel's first outlet, established in 1910, was a hat shop. Indeed, Coco Chanel was forbidden to sell clothes there because a seamstress had her business at that same address.
Today, Chanel is one of the world's most famous luxury brands. Emblematic of high-end French fashion, its international appeal has not wavered for more than a century.
How did this woman, born at the end of the 19th century into a destitute family, become this mythical figure?
BECOMING DE GAULLE [52’]
A visionary even from a very young age
General Charles de Gaulle is a multi-faceted man. There is the savior, a leading figure in French history during WWII. There is the intimate man, the one who cuddled his trisomic daughter, loved the simplicity of family life and always in need of Yvonne, the woman of his life.
And then there is the lesser known side of the man, a visionary even from a very young age.
This film tells the story of young Charles becoming General de Gaulle, the many challenges he imposed on himself. The story begins on November 22, 1890, and ends on June 18, 1940, in London.
BELMONDO LE MAGNIFIQUE [52’]
Between arthouse films and popular movies
With 74 films and 160 million tickets sold, Jean-Paul Belmondo has been the greatest star of French cinema. If the word "bankable" had existed at the time, it would have applied to him.
People under 30 don’t know that he played with all the Nouvelle Vague directors: Godard, Melville, Sautet, Malle, Resnais and Chabrol. People over 50 cannot forget his ebulliency, his show of strength and the stunts he performed himself.
Belmondo on one end, Bébel on the other, between arthouse films and popular movies.
Also available as 90mns
BLACK NIGHT IN PARIS [52’]
An indelible trauma
Police officers, first-aid workers and victims tell us about the course of events which occurred in the fatal evening of November 13, 2015.
We follow each stage of this murderous night from the attacks at the Stade de France, the shootings at the terraces of bars and restaurants in the 11th district to the bloodbath at the Bataclan. 3D images help understand the events and their preparation.
The film also looks at Salah Abdeslam's arrest in Molenbeek, Belgium, and the attack on Brussels airport which shed new light on the terrorist networks operating between France and Belgium.
Available as 52' and 90'
BLACK SEPTEMBER: MUNICH OLYMPICS '72 - THE ATTACK [90’]
A page of history written in blood
At dawn, on the 11th day of the XX Olympic Games in Munich, in 1972, 8 Palestinians of the terrorist group Black September climb over the fence surrounding the Olympic village. They head towards the Israeli team’s quarter. What happens thereafter is history: eleven Israeli athletes, one German policeman and five terrorists die in a bloodbath. The Munich massacre not only shocks the whole world but also launches a new era of international terrorism.
This intense and gripping film provides entirely new perspectives and insights into this traumatizing event with never-before-seen footage of the victims and of the negotiations with the terrorists.
BREATH OF FREEDOM [90’]
A paradoxical chapter in American history
At the end of World War II, African-American GIs were stationed in Germany as part of a policy to help rid the country of racism and oppression. That was pretty ironic since strict segregation prevailed in their own country, even in the US army.
Seen by the German people as representatives of a victorious power, these African-American GIs found themselves in a foreign country experiencing for the first time what it feels like to be treated as equals.
BRIDGES OF PARIS (THE) [52’]
Pushing back the limits
The bridges of Paris follow one another along the river, all different since they were built over centuries and reflect the most advanced techniques of each era. First in wood, then in stone, metal and today in high-performance alloys, they have each time pushed back the limits of know-how.
How have these superstructures withstood the test of time? What challenges were met to gain in lightness and sturdiness, to improve span and strength?
Thanks to 3D images and the participation of the best experts, this film takes us back in time to discover the incredible story of the bridges of Paris.
Also available as 70'
BRUCE WILLIS, THE UNBREAKABLE - 90MN VERSION [90’]
Bruce Willis is undoubtedly one of Hollywood biggest stars. From his debut in the series "Moonlighting", to his roles as John McClane in "Die Hard" or as Butch in "Pulp Fiction", his career covers more than a hundred roles and as many unforgettable punchlines.
Over 40 years, Bruce Willis has built such an extensive body of work that he can’t be easily pigeon-holed. From comedy to action films, his choices have been unconventional and has turned Hollywood’s codes upside own. The star with a thousand hats has continuously expanded his palette, allowing him to join the rank of cult actors.
Driven by challenge and curiosity, Bruce Willis has worked with the greatest directors; he has been on top of the box office many times, and has always been able to bounce back after having endured criticism and failures.
BUILDING MODERN PARIS: AN ESOTERIC VISION [52’]
An innovative and unexpected policy of large public works
In 14 years of French presidency, François Mitterrand commissioned 11 major works like the Grande Arche de la Défense, the Opéra Bastille or the Louvre Pyramid.
Initially, nothing was planned in his campaign promises. His policy of large public works has been innovative and unexpected.
Did the former President take himself for Louis XIV? Was there a mystical dimension in the realization of these pharaonic monuments? Was this believer in spiritual forces anxious to leave a trace?
CANNES 1968: WHEN THE FESTIVAL WAS CANCELLED [55’]
Suspense, revolt and stars
"I'm talking to you about solidarity with students and workers and you're talking to me about travelling and close-ups! ». Jean-Luc Godard, May 1968.
That year, the most interesting film in Cannes was the one that took place outside the theaters.
Featuring numerous archives and unreleased testimonies, this film recounts the aborted edition of the 1968 Cannes Film Festival.
CHAPLIN VS THE FBI [52’]
A 30 years feud
One wants to protect America from the Red peril, the other wants to entertain it and denounce its injustices.
Convinced that Charlie Chaplin was in Moscow's pay, J. Edgar Hoover, the FBI's big boss, kept spying on him for 30 years.
Cold war and low blows were natural parts of this merciless hunt, a dive into the troubled waters of a paranoid America.
CHRISTIAN DIOR: THE REFINEMENT OF A LOST PARADISE [52’]
The creator of the New Look
In 1947, an unknown becomes famous overnight in the fashion world.
Christian Dior has just invented the "New Look", a clothing line that gives a new shape to women. Within a decade, the designer will not only revolutionize fashion but also defines it up to today: the globalization of brands, supermodels...
For Christian Dior, everything is linked to his childhood in Granville, France. A lost paradise found in the garden and the house of his parents’ villa.
CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN, TOP OF THE HEELS [52’]
The foot dresser
This film retraces the path of Christian Louboutin from his childhood to present day and portrays a passionate, innovative and modern man.
From Paris to Milan, London and New York, we follow the red sole man during shoe manufacturing, the readying of a show, an exhibition opening, a book release…
The foot dresser shares with us the mysteries of his designs.
CITY IN A GARDEN [4x23’]
Life lessons in nature
This documentary series celebrates the Singapore Botanic Gardens as a living heritage. It features stories of people with rich life experiences and connected, in one way or another, with the Gardens.
Their personal stories are inspiring, uplifting, joyful, life-changing, filled with reminiscence and, most importantly, worth retelling for the important lessons they impart.
CIVILIZATIONS’ LEGACY [8x52’]
Decoding the stones
Today’s world is etched in yesterday’s stones. The story of humanity is craddled in some few seminal civilizations.
Based on archeological and historical research as well as contemporary social, economic and political information, this collection of stand-alone episodes offers a new vision of History. It establishes links between the past and the present that will surprise, entertain and educate at the same time.
Understanding the present by digging the past, such is the purpose of CIVILISATIONS’ LEGACY.
A story of hopes, dreams, trials and tribulations
At the beginning of the 19th century, coal became the fuel of choice and in a short time turned once poor agricultural countries, such as Germany, England and France, into rich and powerful industrial nations.
The story of bituminous coal is also one of courageous men, visionaries, and of secrets. This two-part film follows the trail of these people and how they changed our world: how did the miners live? What dangers did they face? What is hidden behind the disastrous mining accidents?
The history of coal is a story of hopes and dreams, but also of trials and tribulations.
DA VINCI UNFULFILLED DREAM [52’]
The master's uncompleted architectural capstone
In his last years, Leonardo Da Vinci started to work on his ultimate masterpiece: the plans of an extravagant royal palace in Romorantin, a village that was meant to become the new capital of France. Preliminary work began but the building never got off the ground.
On the basis of Leonardo’s drawings, this film takes us to London, Milan and Romorantin. With the help of the best specialists it will achieve the unthinkable: the CGI reconstitution of what should have been the ideal city as imagined from the great Italian genius.
DIM: THE GLAMOROUS HISTORY [52’]
Women's liberation through hosiery
The story of Dim is not only an incredible industrial adventure, it’s also about how glamour made its way in advertising, the evolution of fashion, dress codes and women’s liberation.
Beyond the pictures of gorgeous legs wearing Dim hosiery, this film also tells the moving story of Bernard Giberstein, the founder of the brand.
DON'T BLINK - ROBERT FRANK [52’]
Swiss-born photographer Robert Frank is notorious for having revolutionized photography and independent film. His portraits are snapshots that capture the moment whether they depict the lives of London bankers, Welsh miners or rock stars like the Stones.
He opens up in front of the camera of his long-standing collaborator, Laura Israel and looks back, self-confidently but also self-deprecatingly, at his life and work.
The film shows us an artist in action; the witness of an era which remembers Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg with whom he made films that defined the Beat generation.
Also available in 82'
EAST GERMANY'S LAST DANCE [52’]
The last anniversary of the German Democratic Republic
This film focusses on the 40th and last anniversary of the German Democratic Republic on October 7, 1989.
For Honecker and his politbureau, this day was supposed to be a show of power, success and vitality of the socialist state. However, during the celebrations, the people of East Germany gathered and all over the country large demonstrations took place against the regime. It became the day when the GDR started crumbling and the entire Eastern bloc with it. Only a month later the Berlin Wall would fall.
On this very day, the Cold War order unraveled and a different Europe emerged.
EMILIO VEDOVA - DALLA PARTE DEL NAUFRAGIO [52’]
One of the most significant contemporary artists
This film traces the extraordinary human and artistic vicissitude of the great painter through the pages of his diary, rare archives and contributions from artists, curators, collaborators and friends.
Against the backdrop of the political, social and artistic history that characterized the 20th century, and thanks to Toni Servillo's passionate interpretation and the almost personal and direct dialogue he conducts with Vedova, we focus on the personality of one of the most significant contemporary artists.
FIFTEEN YEARS OF TERROR [2x52’]
Terrorism recent history
In fifteen years, from the 9/11 attacks against the World Trade Center to those in Paris in November 2015, dramatic and deadly strikes have been targeting Western countries like never before and have changed the face of the world. In between these two major events, the aggressions and victims kept piling up.
How and why did we go from a terrorist group like Al Qaeda to an even crazier and bloodthirsty one like ISIS? Who are these terrorists? What is radical Islam? Why do they target our democracies?
From Afghanistan to Western societies, through Syria and Iraq, this film investigates the recent history of terrorism.
FINANCING TERROR [60’]
An unprecedented weapon: money warfare
In the aftermath of 9/11, an unprecedented weapon has been used in order to “starve terrorism”: financial warfare.
Initial successes were followed by setbacks with the insurrection in Iraq and the fiasco of the Syrian war, rooted in inconsistent foreign policies. Some states are financing terrorism while others face tough choices between political and economic pressure.
Treasons, shaky alliances, lies by omission… In this fight, no holds are barred.
FORBIDDEN PARIS: MEGASTRUCTURES OF THE SHADOWS [52’]
Beneath the City of Lights
Everyone has heard about Paris and its architectural treasures. But the City of Lights has many secrets yet to be discovered. Indeed, under its pavement, the French capital hides megastructures in its shadow which are mysterious, dangerous and unknown to the public.
Underground constructions are unique and essential for the city and they represented colossal challenges for their builders.
An abysmal journey into the construction of Paris foundations.
FRANCE UNDER THE ALLIED BOMBS [3x52’]
Unnecessary civilian casualties
After 4 years of Nazi occupation, the French welcomed the liberation by the allied forces. Immediately afterwards, they focused entirely on the reconstruction of the country, occulting the dark years of the war.
But as time went by, and thanks to historical research, questions began to emerge. Indeed, French cities were heavily bombed by the allied aviation, but was the sacrifice of the civilian population really necessary? Were there strategic mistakes and why were they not acknowledged?
Through the tragic destiny of 3 cities (Le Havre, Royan and Rouen), this collection opens a dark and still little known page of WWII.
FRANK SINATRA: THE VOICE OF AMERICA [90’]
The man behind the winning smile
This film takes us behind the scenes to tell the story of the man known as "the Voice". What kind of person was Francis Albert Sinatra and what were the keys to his success?
We meet the man behind the winning smile and show why Sinatra became a big star, an icon and to many a hero, even though he was suffering many traumas, that influenced an entire era.
Also available in 52mns.
GERHARD SCHRODER, DRUM UP YOUR COURAGE [52’]
The man who revived Germany
This is the portrait of a man without whom Germany wouldn’t be what it is today.
When Gerhard Schröder came to power, his country was depicted as the "sickman of Europe". His actions -which often turned the back to his social-democrat roots- still explain today the division inside the society, the increasing divergence between east and west, rich and poor, politics and society. It cost him his reelection, a risk he was fully aware of taking. But the radical changes he imposed definitely helped Germany to regain its status and succesfully face the various crises of the subsequent years.
Through hard work and discipline, Gerhard Schröder worked his way up from a humble origin to one of the most powerful political positions in Germany. Today his political savvy and expertise are sought after in a world increasingly dominated by populist leaders and autocratic states.
GERMAN DYNASTIES [4x45’]
This series is about 4 iconic families who came to define the country and how they managed to preserve their heritage over several generations.
These names are an entry into the world of the rich and famous, through their social influence, the size of their wealth and their interaction with the economics and politics powers that be.
However, many prominent members of these families have face failures despite their famous ancestry.
GOODBYE MOUBARAK! [72’]
A revolution in progress
On January 25, 2011, the Egyptian people rose up. Suddenly, the entire world was taken aback. In only 18 days, the popular rebellion caused the fall of Mubarak’s regime.
Yet, three months earlier, anger was already brewing beneath the surface. Outraged by the illegitimacy and widespread fraud of the 2010 legislative elections, the street was biding its time. A few weeks later, it only took the spark wafting over from Tunisia to set ablaze the powder keg. Everything was already in place to mark a new page in Egyptian history.
GUILLAUME DEPARDIEU, THE STORY OF AN ENFANT TERRIBLE [52’]
A shattered destiny
Guillaume Depardieu, who died at the age of 37, was famous French actor Géard Depardieu’s son.
Through the testimony of those who met him, this film is a portrait of a complex personality. It is the story of a destiny that was shattered too soon, that of a wounded man, revolted, disturbed by childhood and to whom adulthood brought no peace. A man with a rare talent, that of being able to express himself with amazing virtuosity both as an actor and as a musician.
GURLITT AND THE SECRET OF THE NAZI TREASURE [52’]
A suspicious art collection
In 2010, while crossing the Swiss-German border, an old man catches the attention of two German tollkeepers. In his luggage, they find 9000 Euros in hard cash. The man is called Cornelius Gurlitt, 79 years old at that time. Authorities decide to keep an eye on him.
What investigators find in his Munich apartment exceeds all expectations: a giant art collection consisting of more than 1000 pieces of art from different eras. The collection was passed on to Gurlitt by his father, Hildebrand, an art dealer during the Nazi era.
Can these paintings be looted art taken from Jewish families by the Nazis?
HERITAGE HEROES [6x24’]
Revamping historical neighborhoods
Whether restoring ancestral homes in China, revitalizing a derelict railway line in New York or renovating colonial seafront buildings in Zanzibar, HERITAGE HEROES scours the world for the people and organizations responsible for rescuing, safeguarding and reviving our built heritage.
Several exceptional characters from all continents reveal how urban preservation transcends national borders and leads to positive effects. Indeed, such endeavors can not only contribute to a greater sense of cultural identity and well-being but also foster trade by creating jobs and attracting tourists.
HITLER AND THE APOSTLES OF EVIL [90’]
The devil and his confidants
Thanks to unpublished colorized archives and exceptional testimonies, HITLER AND THE APOSTLES OF EVIL sheds a light on this somehow still unknown personality and the influence of his confidants.
HITLER'S MEIN KAMPF: A DANGEROUS BOOK [52’]
Why do the author's thoughts remain so fascinating?
The State of Bavaria prohibited MEIN KAMPF at the end of World War II. In 2016, 70 years after the death of his author, the book entered into the public domain.
Several questions arise with it: why does the book remain so dangerous? Why do Hitler’s thoughts remain so fascinating? In today’s world, is it wise to reprint MEIN KAMPF?
IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF GEORGE CHINNERY [52’]
Painting China in the mid-19th century
George Chinnery was one of the first and most notable European artists to live in Southern China prior to the arrival of photography. His sketches, watercolours and oil paintings are held in private collections and museums worldwide.
This film depicts the life and works of the English painter during his years in Macao in the mid-19th century. The artist’s work captures vividly the Chinese culture and the way of life for expatriates in the Far East during the China Trade and Opium War years from 1825 to 1860.
ISIS: TERRORISM 2.0 [52’]
How did the World let it emerge?
On November 13, 2015, a new terrorist organization strikes at the heart of a major Western capital: Paris. The toll is terrible giving ISIS an overnight and sinister fame.
What is this terrorist group? Who are its men? Why going after France and the West? How did we let such a monster corner a huge swath of land and thus gain unmatched power? Why is it attracting so many youngsters around the world?
This exceptional film sheds light on the emergence and expansion of a new and disturbing phenomenon: 2.0 terrorism.
IT’S ALL IN LEBANON [52’]
Pop culture and civil war
After 17 years of civil war between Christians and Muslims, the Israeli invasion, the Syrian occupation, 20,000 victims, Lebanese thought it was finally over. But 20 years after the official end of the war, Lebanon is still not a cohesive nation.
Somehow, this film shows how peace has never really settled. Indeed, the main protagonists of past conflicts have been using popular culture, propaganda, music, celebrated war heroes even pin-ups to foster their causes.
JESSE OWENS - LUZ LONG: AN EVERLASTING FRIENDSHIP [52’]
The paragon of the olympic spirit
Berlin. August 1936. Jesse Owens, the black American, and Luz Long, the image of the perfect Aryan, compete in the Olympic Games under the watchul eyes of Adolf Hitler, who is eagerly expcting the triumph of his favorite athlete.
But during the event, the two athletes put aside their differences and the ideals they represent to face off in the tradition of the Olympic spirit. Luz Long even advises his nemesis during the qualifying rounds of the long jump that Jesse Owens finally wins.
Thanks to archival images associated with reenactments of the long jump event, testimonies from the descendants of the two athletes, sportsmen and historians, this film sheds new light on the 1936 Olympic Games, a decisive event that heralded the greatest tragedy of the 20th century.
KASHMIR, ASIA'S FORGOTTEN POWDER KEG [52’]
The oldest ongoing conflict in the world
On the far reaches of the Himalayas, the Kashmir conflict pits India against Pakistan, two countries that each possess nuclear weapons.
Over 70 years of war, unstable peace and aborted dialogue, this area, where Hinduism, Islam and Buddhism mix, has become one of the most militarized in the world.
KIM JONG-IL: THE FORBIDDEN BIOGRAPHY [52’]
A hazardous handover
Kim-Jong Il was the most secretive political leader on earth. A grotesque dictator with a finger on the nuclear trigger.
Starting from a personality profile of this schizophrenic dictator through exclusive testimonies, this film offers a geopolitical analysis of the Korean peninsula based on first hand Russian, Chinese and Korean archive footage. Breaking away from the formulaic anathemas on the evilness of Kim-Jong Il, this film casts a striking light on a totalitarian dictatorship which gave birth to the first communist dynasty in History.
A must needed portrait of a leader whose nuclear gambit has been taken over by his equally enigmatic son Kim Jong Un.
KIM JONG-UN: THE UNAUTHORIZED BIOGRAPHY [52’]
The heir to the first communist dynasty in History
He is the living God of the 9th nuclear power of the world. He is a Western educated young man and a basketball fan but raised in secrecy to take over the commands of the North Korean regime, the first communist dynasty in history. From him we only have amusing, absurd and sometimes terrifying images distillated by the Pyongyang propaganda.
Two years ago, we investigated in Switzerland, the USA and Asia to find those who really knew Kim Jong-un and tried to profile the then new leader. This red prince has many startling secrets and his ambiguous personality now impacts the future of the world as the stunned world witnesses the arm wrestling between North Korea and the USA.
LA LA LA, A STORY OF MUSICALS [52’]
A playful panorama of an enchanting genre
More than a simple cinematographic genre, the musical is a state of mind, a kind of magic which can touch many things, our memories of course but also unexpected realms.
This film offers a playful panorama of an enchanting genre.
LEGENDS OF EUROPE [12x52’]
Mystical and fantasy tales
This series take a new, almost magical, look at European heritage driven by a newfound interest for the fantastic dimension of its age-old legends. Whether frightening or surprising, these stories, inspired by natural splendours, are, at once, mystical and obscure enigmas to decipher.
Pirates, satanic beasts, enchanted forests, petrified shepherds, bewitched lakes, amphibian monsters or captive princesses are the heroes of this saga which, from North to South and from East to West, takes a new look at Europe.
LIBERTY TRAIN, NEXT STOP FREEDOM [90’]
An exceptional exodus
Exclusive archive footage, reenactments and interviews tell the exceptional story of an exodus that started right before the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Starting from Prague, crossing East-Germany to settle in Germany, these refugees were the forerunners of a yet to unfold world-shaking event.
This film tell their exhausting train journey through communist countries towards the treacherous border of West-Germany and, from there, into a new life in the western world.
LIFE ABOARD AN AIRCRAFT CARRIER [56’]
Life aboard the Charles de Gaulle
The aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle is the largest ship of the French Navy. Longer than 2 football fields, high as a 20 storey high building, it is a real floating city with 2,000 inhabitants with a hospital, post office and self-service where 4,000 meals are served each day. With spectacular on-board images, live sequences and animations, discover the extraordinary life aboard this building with sailors not like the others and be ready to share life with this ship dedicated to produce the armaments.
LINO VENTURA, AN INTIMATE PORTRAIT [52’]
A naturally gifted and legendary actor
Lino Ventura was a naturally gifted actor, one of the most familiar faces of French cinema and a man who took quite a revenge on life.
Director Jean-Pierre Melville said he could play anything. So why did he turn down so many important roles? Why did he only chose worthy characters? Why did he, somehow, limit himself?
This portrait reveals the childhood of an Italian immigrant subject to shame and humiliation. Behind the figure of a burly man is a boy with many wounds. It will inform his entire career which then appears in a different light. If the actor has limited himself, the man has fully succeeded in life.
LOG TRAIN TO PARIS [52’]
No wood, no ovens. No ovens, no bread. No bread... riots.
For more than three centuries, from 1547 to 1923, the forests of the Morvan region of France sent timber down the rivers to Paris. This vital source of energy was controlled by powerful wood merchants. The stakes were indeed high: without wood there could be no ovens; without ovens there could be no bread; without bread there could be riots!
To keep the supply flowing uninterrupted, a floating loose-log transport system was introduced. Its meticulous organization and ingenious techniques played a vital role in the history of France. Without the wood trains of the Nièvre raftsmen, Paris would have been a very different city.
LU, A COOKIE STORY [60’]
170 years and counting
The LU brand was founded in 1846 by a couple working from a small pastry shop in Nantes.
This film tells the story of one of the most famous French industrial adventures that has lasted for more than 170 years.
MACRON'S ROAD TO ELYSEE [52’]
A remarkable strategy of conquest
This film tells the historical presidential campaign of Emmanuel Macron, told from the inside.
How is this man able to carry out an election campaign without the backing of a traditional political party and still seduce a large swath of French voters. Whether he wins or not, the former minister of Finance has already succeeded in his gamble, considered insane a few months before, to become one of the favorites in the coming election.
Even if the political events of 2016 have turned out in his favor, its strategy of conquest remains remarkable for a neophyte in politics.
MAFIA AND ITALY, A BLOODY PACT [55’]
In 1992, the anti-Mafia magistrates Falcone and Borsellino were murdered in Palermo, the capital of Sicily. For a long time public opinion believed in a story of revenge; that of Toto Riina who was head of Cosa Nostra, the fearsome Sicilian mafia.
Today, a lawsuit is challenging this hypothesis. Within the Italian state, someone is said to have guided the murders. With exclusive testimonies from judges, politicians and witnesses under protection, this film reveals several decades of incestuous links between the State and the mafia.
MARION MARÉCHAL-LE PEN, THE NEW HEIR [33’]
She won’t be a lame duck
She embodies the third generation of a political dynasty. Marion Maréchal-Le Pen was immersed in the Front National environment since childhood.
Jean-Marie Le Pen’s granddaughter did not get the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region in the last elections, but she entered the regional council with 41 representatives, and she won’t be a lame duck.
This is a portrait of a scion not to be taken lightly.
MOUNTAIN HEROES [72’]
Up there together
At the feet of the Mont Blanc, Europe’s highest mountain, Chamonix is proud of its "Compagnie des Guides". Created in 1821, it is the oldest and most prestigious mountain guides’ company in the world.
People come from all over to ascend the Mont Blanc, most often under the guidance of a member of the Company. This is a very special organization based on solidarity and the love of mountain climbing.
But who are these women and men who have sworn allegiance to their passion? What values and convictions do they set forth? How do they cope with the hazards that are inherent to their occupation?
MY CULTURAL REVOLUTION [52’]
“I was barely 10 when I was thrown into this madness. The turmoil swallowed me. When it was over, I was a man. A pretty unusual teenage crisis!”. Xu Xing, a Chinese writer, revisits his early years which were ravaged by the Cultural Revolution. It cost him his illusions, his family and his first love who betrayed him.
Welcome back to a world where love was prohibited, culture and education denied and all forms of traditions wrecked. For the first time, Chinese people testify about this unconscionable lunacy initiated by Mao Zedong which caused the death of over a million people.
MY CULTURAL REVOLUTION is an agonizing tribute to all the humble and anonymous victims of a modern history tragedy.
NAKED CITY [52’]
Freedom or lust ?
The nudist village of Cap d'Agde has a sulphurous reputation. Infamous for being the world's largest clothing-optional beach resort, it is often depicted as the place of all excesses, the international rendez-vous for swingers.
Beyond the nudist/libertine divide, this is the fascinating story of a very unique spot which has been at the vanguard of the evolution of mores since the late sixties.
Despite all the contradictions and controversies, there is however one thing everyone agree upon in Cap d'Agde: freedom is paramount.
NAZIS/RESISTANCE: THE UNDERGROUND WAR [52’]
The secret places of German occupation in Paris
Paris, June 1940. The heavy boots of the Wehrmacht soldiers hammer the cobblestones of the Champs-Elysées. Declared open city and emptied of two thirds of its population, the French capital has just been abandoned to Germany without a fight. The Nazis could not have dreamed of better trophies than the Arc de Triomphe, Hôtel des Invalides, Eiffel Tower and Place de la Concorde.
Yet, behind the glowing images of German propaganda, the war is far from over.
This film tells the underground war of occupied Paris. The incredible capture of the Senate and its bunker by the Germans, the atrocities committed by the Gestapo in the rue des Saussaies, the escape tunnel of Drancy and the liberation of Paris from the underground.
NORTH KOREA, THE GREAT ILLUSION [50’]
Beyond the propaganda
In 2011, the sudden death of Kim Jung Il brought to power his Western educated son and basket-ball fan Kim Jun-un, 30. But very quickly any hope of liberalization raised by the new leadership faded in front of the dictatorial logic of the first communist dynasty in History.
This is the testimony of a journalist invited in 2014 in North Korea to film whatever the regime wanted to promote. He did come back with loads of official images but couldn’t help put them in perspective with accounts of North Korean refugees, shedding a blinding light on the ghastly reality of their country.
Propaganda, mass enrollment, brain washing and cult of personality are the cogs thoroughly dissected in this reference film which is today a striking case study of the mechanics of a totalitarian country now threatening the world's peace with its nuclear fire.
NOWITZKI : THE PERFECT SHOT [105’]
His path to NBA glory
A documentary that follows the early career of basketball star Dirk Nowitzki, his relationship with coach and mentor Holger Geschwindner, and their path to NBA glory.
OBJECTIVE ROUEN: UNDER THE ALLIED BOMBS [52’]
The US Air Force never apologized
In the early summer of 1942, the American war machine is deployed in Great Britain.
The United States want to test its B-17 super bomber and decide to carry out the first daytime bombing of the WWII. They choose the railway junction of Rouen to cripple the enemy's military logistics. The operation is successful but Rouen is leveled. Hundreds of civilian die while thousands are wounded.
The inhabitants never forgave.
The US Air Force never apologized.
OLIVIER ROUSTEING, THE YOUNG PRINCE OF BALMAIN [40’]
A highly creative designer
During Paris Fashion Week, the Balmain show is the one not to be missed under any circumstances.
For the past 6 years, it has been orchestrated and designed by the young prodigy Olivier Rousteing. This highly talented and sensitive designer has succeeded in rejuvenating the old French fashion house.
For the first time, Olivier Rousteing allowed cameras to film his life at its most dramatic moment.
ON THE WRITERS' TRAIL [30x26’]
A literary pilgrimage
This series offers an enchanting journey, a literary pilgrimage combining fascinating and unusual places with the intimate discovery of genius authors who have reinvented their time and who continue to influence today’s minds.
Are covered such illustrious writers as Ronsard, Corneille, Montaigne, Voltaire, Balzac, Sand, Hugo, Flaubert, Dumas, Zola, Rimbaud, Verlaine, Vigny, Madame de Staël, la Comtesse de Ségur, Daudet, Maupassant...
ONE YEAR WITH MACRON [52’]
The freshman year
The aim of this film is to analyze and decrypt French President Emmanuel Macron.
What kind of president is he? A technocrat, an authoritarian, a liberal, a "startuper", a monarchist, a provocative? How does he wield his power?
With exclusive testimonies of Emmanuel Macron himself, historians, linguists, writers, sociologists and immersive sequences, we focus on the first year of the youngest French president.
PACO RABANNE, THE EXTRAVAGANT [52’]
A metallurgist for some and a visionary for others
Paco Rabanne has been labelled a metallurgist by some and a visionary by others. The fact is that he never left anyone indifferent. He retired from the fashion scene in 1999 after more than 30 years of creativity.
The fashion house that bears his name celebrated its 50th anniversary.
Between extravagance and heritage, this film tells the incredible story of its creator.
PASSIONATE PEOPLE [50x25’]
This documentary series depicts the charm and real self of an athlete, a performer, a musician, a scholar and many other who are active in the front lines of their field of expertise.
From Nobel Prize Shinya Yamanaka, best selling writer Marie Kondo or Michelin star's Ramen chef Yuki Onishi, we take a close look at daily lives and activities of these “passionate people” .
PROVENCE, AUGUST 1944: THE OTHER D-DAY [52’]
End of 1943, early 1944, the Allies decided to carry out a double invasion in the North and South of France. Their strategy was to ensnare the Germans.
That led to Operation Overlord in Normandy on June 6, 1944, while Operation Dragoon took place in Provence on August 15, 1944, and is now known as "the Other D-Day".
PUTIPHAR'S TRAVEL GUIDE [10x52’]
A 19th century globe-trotter
Petrus Putiphar is the author of travel guides.
This professional fictional traveller identifies sights to visit, museums, gardens, places to check, he walks around cities and blackens the pages of his notebook while sharing his discoveries and observations.
We follow him to Paris, London, Vienna, Constantinople, Amsterdam or St. Petersburg. Flagship capitals of the 19th century... because Putiphar travels at that very period.
RAMESSES II THE GREAT JOURNEY [52’]
The post-mortem adventures of the greatest Pharaoh
3200 years ago, Egypt is living the final hours of its golden age under the reign of Ramesses II. After ruling the country for 67 years, the great pharaoh dies at the ripe old age of 92.
His mummy is burried in the heart of the Valley of the Kings. This is the beginning of his great journey towards the afterlife and eternity but only under one condition: that his tomb remains off limits forever.
However, in the 19th century, several European adventurers find and explore the tomb of the illustrious king searching for the burial chamber where his body rests alongside an invaluable treasure. Then begins a riveting archeological investigation through time and space, which reveals the spellbinding story of Ramesses II after-life.
RAYMOND POULIDOR, THE CHAMPION [52’]
The eternal second
Raymond Poulidor was a famous French cyclist who drew his stardom from being viewed as the eternal second in the history of Tour de France.
Today, Raymond Poulidor is a handsome, silver-haired gentleman peacefully growing old. He looks back on his career and talks about the glory, doping, money and women, as well as his legendary rivalry with Jacques Anquetil which fascinated the cycling world.
ROYAN, THE CURSE OF THE LIBERATION [52’]
The first use of napalm bombs
Late 1944. France is liberated but some pockets of German resistance remain on the Atlantic coast.
At Royan, the Allies have difficulty overcoming the Reich army. In January 1945, then in March, they decide to bomb the town centre. It turns into a disaster. Poor coordination between the Americans, the British and the French results in the outright annihilation of the city.
Thousands of civilians and soldiers die under the bombs which, for the first time, were filled with napalm.
SAMURAI CASTLES [52’]
Part fortresses, part palaces
After 5 years of restoration, Japan proudly celebrates the reopening of the Himeji Castle, a recently added World Heritage UNESCO site.
Too often mistaken for temples, Japanese castles are an integral part of the history of the country. Their slender architecture impressed the first Europeans who landed here in the 16th century. One can easily imagine samurai meandering down the footpaths, checking the defences or visiting the dungeons.
From North to South and appropriately during the blossoming of the Sakura – the cherry tree which flower was the symbol of the samurais– this film unveils monuments still largely unknown outside of Japan.
SEARCHING FOR MULLAH OMAR [59’]
Who really was the iconic leader of the talibans?
Mullah Omar, the Afghan Taliban leader, is one of the most controversial and enigmatic men on the planet. Even after a decade of foreign military presence, we still know absolutely nothing about him. Is he a dreadful Islamist? Has he been branded evil to justify a military intervention in Afghanistan? Or was he a village idiot overwhelmed by events?
Our team (actually 3 female journalists) has travelled to Afghanistan for almost a decade: dining with militiamen, going across innumerable checkpoints or having a good laugh with Taliban.
Fascinated by the mystery surrounding Mullah Omar, they’ve decided to walk in his footsteps, trying to uncover the man behind one of this century’s most inscrutable myths. This is the story of their investigation.
SECRETS OF HISTORY - ENIGMAS [19x75’]
The greatest mysteries of history unveiled
Why did Cleopatra kill herself?
Did Judas betrayed Jesus?
Was Napoleon poisoned?
SECRETS OF HISTORY sheds light on some of the unsolved mysteries of the past through interviews of historians, archives and re-enactments.
SECRETS OF HISTORY - PORTRAITS [119x100’]
This series unveils the great mysteries of the past through the evocation of exceptional destinies, known or unknown.
Each episode retraces the life of an emblematic historical character and highlights remarkable heritage sites.
The masterminds behind the most popular series
Today, American series have become masterpieces of creativity and storytelling.
However, rarely do we hear the showrunners themselves talk about their work.
In this series, exclusive interviews have been conducted with 12 showrunners that are at the top of their game.
SOYUZ IN FRENCH GUIANA [52’]
The Russian space adventure in Amazonia
How do you say "Holy Mary" in Russian? In Creole, they say "Sinnamary" as the name of the village located in the north of French Guiana where the mythical Soyuz launchers take off.
Two hundred Russians, straight from the banks of the Volga River, have been busy in the Amazon rainforest building a new launch site and starting an unprecedented human and spatial adventure. Housed in a quirky hotel, they brought a little of their lifestyle, stories, pride and doubts.
In this film history meets culture shock.
SWITZERLAND: HITLER’S BANKERS [52’]
The economics of WWII
Looking at World War II from the perspective of economics, it is quite clear that the Third Reich was a giant with feet of clay.
A series of unprecedented revelations explains how Germany has been able to finance its huge war expenses.
The war might have ended in 1943, had Switzerland not recycled the gold looted by the Nazis throughout Europe and France.
THE "ACTION DIRECTE" ORGANISATION SECRET HISTORY [52’]
A murderous ideology
In 1979, with the launching of Action Directe, France followed the path of its German and Italian neighbors with the emergence of a domestic terrorist violence which culminated with the murders of army General Audran in 1985 and of the head of Renault Georges Besse in 1986. The following year, the 4 leaders of the movement were arrested and sentenced to life in prison. According to the media, they were targeting the symbols of capitalism but none of the victims had the profile of a free marketeer.
What were the motivations of this group?
New witnesses shed a new light on the bloody trajectory of these mysterious terrorist murderers.
THE ALBERT GOERING FILE [52’]
The younger brother of the Reichmarschall Hermann Goering
His story is hard to believe and yet it is real.
He was arrested three times by the Gestapo and released three times. On May 10, 1945, he was imprisoned by the American Army and interrogated. He then wrote a list of 34 names: people he had saved from deportation and death. His name was Albert Goering He was the younger brother of the Reichmarschall Hermann Goering, Adolf Hitler’s right-hand man.
From re-enactments based on Albert Goering’s interrogation by an American officer, the testimony of families saved by his actions and with unreleased archive images, this is the portrait of an enigmatic man in the heart of Third Reich.
THE BATTLE OF THE SOMME [52’]
A tragic attack
July 1, 1916, 7:30am. In the Somme, 500,000 French and British soldiers, on a front stretching 40 km, launch the most senseless attack of an absurd war. Carrying 35 kg on their backs and with orders not to run or drop on the ground, they walk towards death as if on a parade. That morning, 60,000 men fall.
This absurd obstinate pursuit of an error would last 5 months.
With more than a million casualties on both sides, the Battle of the Somme would cost more lives than Verdun in twice as less time. For negligible results.
THE BEAUTIFUL STORY OF POULAIN CHOCOLATE [52’]
Between know-how and modernity
While Poulain chocolate is still one of the favourite brands in France, little is known about the story of its discreet founder, Victor-Auguste Poulain. Yet his life was singular.
Born in 1825, in a large and destitute family, nothing prepared him to become one of the best chocolate makers and one of the greatest industrialists of his time.
THE FINAL JOURNEY OF THE ROMANOVS [52’]
A century old tragedy
Following the February 1917 Russian revolution, the Tsar Nicolas II abdicates. This film is an exceptional daily account of the tragic fate of the whole imperial family until its demise in July 1918. It is the story of a drama unfolding while History is on march, from the February and October revolutions to the end of WWI and the bloody Russian civil war.
Why was such a powerful mornarch abandoned by everyone, including his dearest cousin, King George of England? Did Lenin played a personal role in this outcome? Was murder the only solution?
One century later, the final weeks of the Romanovs are testament to the vanishing great European monarchies.
THE GREAT MASTERS OF PAINTING [15x52’]
The greatest art geniuses
These masters of painting have been piercing observers of their times, leaving their works for posterity.
Often misunderstood, even harassed by the critics, they were trailblazers of new artistic movements which transformed art forever and still fascinate scholars today.
This series is a thrilling journey into the world of the greatest painting geniuses.
THE KINGS OF FRANCE [40x52’]
The challenges of ruling
This series explores the history of France through its kings, from the 15th to the 19th centuries, by uncovering how each one reigned, his specificities, skills and failings.
Is it possible to find a balance between personal life and political governance? What are the biggest obstacles that these kings had to overcome? What does it take to be a "good king"?
THE LEGENDARY SIMONE VEIL [60’]
From Holocaust to the European Parliament, meet Simone Veil through her fights and motivations. Discover one of the most popular heroine of the recent history, a symbol of freedom and courage, a women’s rights icon, a legend.
THE MAN WHO DEFIED AMERICA [52’]
The 30 years showdown between General de Gaulle and the USA
The hostility of the United States towards the General de Gaulle is not a secret anymore. Successive American administrations tried everything to subdue him without ever succeeding, using media manipulations or clandestine financing of his opponents to name a few strategies.
The showdown between the General and the USA would last 30 years.
This film explains the reasons behind this antagonism thanks to declassified archives and new testimonies. For the first time, it is now possible to recount this secret war which pitted de Gaulle against America from 1940 to 1969.
THE MAN WHO DEFIED BEIJING [58’]
Rebel and Nobel Peace Prize winner
Human rights hero and the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize winner, Liu Xiaobo was a key figure of the Tiananmen uprising. He was arrested under the same security law China is now imposing upon Hong Kong.
Liu Xiaobo spent 9 years in jail and was released in 2017, only to die a few weeks later. Today he is a source of inspiration for the young Hong Kong protesters.
However, his name remains little known as the Chinese regime has done everything possible to erase it from our collective memory. Alas for the Beijing masters, Liu Xiaobo left a political legacy under the form of a long interview delivered before his arrest.
This exceptional film is his legacy supplemented with the testimonials of those closest to him. It is also the compelling story of China's radical mutations.
THE MARIE BESNARD CASE [52’]
A truth still shrouded in mystery
Marie Besnard, a young woman born at the end of the 19th century, was suspected of being a serial killer, using poison to dispose of her victims. After 3 trials spread over more than 10 years, she was finally released in 1954 and acquitted.
Even today, the Marie Besnard’s case is still shrouded in mystery and has been the subject of books, TV shows and movies.
This documentary seeks out the witnesses who are still alive (investigators, police officers, lawyers, residents, etc...) at the very site where the case took place to help decipher the complex personality of the accused.
THE MENIER CHOCOLATE STORY [60’]
It ruled the world for a century and a half
Menier chocolate ruled the world for a century and a half. In 1960, the company was acquired and became just another brand within the Nestlé Group, which markets it only in France.
From this fabulous empire remains a prestigious architectural heritage: private mansions in Paris, the castle of Chenonceau and also the "Menier city" with its own currency, workers' quarters, factory and railway line.
THE OTHER GOERING [52’]
A divided brotherhood
You're not always responsible for your family members. Especially when you're the brother of one of the greatest war criminals, Reichsmarschall Hermann Goering.
It's hard to present oneself as a champion of individual freedoms when, in 1945, the death camps are being discovered, that the war has claimed millions of lives and every average German declares himself to be anti-Nazi.
And yet Hermann's brother, Albert Goering, calls himself a protector of the weak and oppressed. True or false? We find out that the devil had an archangel brother.
THE PALACE ON THE ATLANTIC [45’]
An Empress summer residence
Biarritz is home to the only palace bordering the Atlantic.
Built in 1855 at the behest of Napoleon III, this imposing building is part of France's historical heritage. Empress Eugénie made it her summer residence.
Today, craftsmen such as cabinetmakers, decorators, upholsterers and painters renovate using traditional techniques.
THE RED SPIES THEORY [57’]
The chinese economic intelligence scheme
Two years ago this visionnary film showcased how Chira was acquiring Western technology though economic intelligence and how the West complacently let this happen.
In 2006, 70% of patents used in mainland China came from abroad. The aim is to reverse this trend by 2020. To achieve this, the government has announced the creation of the concept of "re-innovation", meaning getting foreign knowhow and technology, then adapting them before registering domestic patents.
Aeronautics, nuclear, telecommunication, transportation, green energy... All major economic sectors are covered by the "chen diyu", the "deep water fish" as Beijing likes to call its intelligence agents.
THE REVIVAL OF CHAMBORD [52’]
The 500 year old castle celebration
Chambord is the largest of the Loire Valley castles, a monumental architecture masterpiece built in the 16th century. Inside there are more than 400 rooms served by 77 staircases, including the one with double revolution attributed to Leonardo da Vinci. The estate, covering 5,440 hectares, is the largest enclosed park in Europe.
Maintaining and enhancing the site is a daily challenge. To celebrate its 500th anniversary, Chambord has come up with new decors, new vineyards and new products.
THE TASTY STORY OF BANANIA [60’]
The Banania chocolate powder recipe was born by chance in the mind of a Frenchman, during a trip to an Indian village in Nicaragua.
He started manufacturing on the eve of the First World War. Quickly, Banania forged its identity using the patriotic image of an African infantryman and with a slogan that would later become a subject of controversy.
After two world wars and the dismantling of the French colonial empire, it remains one of the country most famous brands.
THE TOMB OF THE USSR [52’]
A war that changed the face of the World
Forty years ago, the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan triggered 10 years of a dirty conflict that changed the face of the world.
Through exclusive archives of the Afghan guerilla and the testimony of the local Soviet former commander in chief, this film unveils the full story of a war which marked the beginning of the fall of the USSR.
THE TRUE STORY OF THE GREAT ESCAPE [52’]
More dramatic than Hollywood
Winter 1944. In Nazi Germany, 76 pilots - British, Canadians, Norwegians and French – who were held in a Luftwaffe prison camp, escaped. The tunnel used for their flight was built in the greatest secrecy, right under the nose of their German guards.
This historical saga, immortalized in 1963 by John Sturges in his movie "The Great Escape" with Steve Mac Queen, went around the world. But the real story of these men overtakes by far the fiction imagined by Hollywood.
Among the witnesses of this documentary, Jack Lyon, one of the last survivors of this adventure.
TIAN ANMEN: THE FORBIDDEN MEMORY [52’]
30 ans after...
June 1989, Beijing, Tian Anmen Square.
The tanks of the People’s Liberation Army violently repress the democratic aspirations of the Chinese youth. It is a bloodshed, with nearly a thousand killed.
June 2009, Beijing, Tian Anmen Square.
Friendly policemen, gazing tourists and Mao effigies are everywhere. No traces of the massacre on the square, nor in the press, the Internet or in the History schoolbooks. It is like nothing ever happened.
Is this transformation the result of effective propaganda, plain old indoctrination or cautious silence?
By confronting 20-year old Chinese (those representing the China of tomorrow) with those who, 30 years ago, dreamed of another China, this film is the startling account of the heavy control prevailing in Chinese society today.
TOO YOUNG TO DIE [12x52’]
Behind the myth
In the age of mass media, the death of a star is always a public event that is exploited, serving a thirst for sensationalism.
This series shows the women and the men behind their myths, their reported success and early fame, before succumbing to despair and tragedy. It explores how the gap between their actual lives and public personae promotes contemporary legends.
TRAILBLAZERS IN HABITS [58’]
The Sisters who stood up for Human Rights
In America, the Maryknoll Sisters are truly iconic. Far from the clichés of Catholic nuns removed from the turmoil of the world, they have been witnesses and sometimes active players in some of the major historical events of the last Century such as the Chinese revolution, the civic rights movement in the USA, the independence of African countries and the bloody civil wars of the 70’s in Central America.
Everywhere they’ve been on the side of the poorest and the persecuted, often paying the price for it with their blood and freedom.
TRAILBLAZERS IN HABITS is a deeply moving portrait of these nuns. This absorbing chronicle spans 100 years and several continents to relate the intelligence, tenacity and compassion of these early feminists. It weaves together the nuns own affecting accounts of imprisonment and personal struggle with never before seen archival footage and poignant reminisces from the beneficiaries of their work.
The adaptation of the rough and powerful story of one of the only survivors of the Treblinka camp
Guillaume Ribot adapts Chil Rajchman’s story “I’m the last jew”.
Prisoner at the Treblinka extermination camp after avoiding the gaz chamber, he survived by doing small he participated to the camp uprising and escaped. Hidden while the war is not over, he writes his last ten months in “the hell of Treblinka”.
At the Liberation, he is one of the only 57 survivors among the 750 000 jews sent to Treblinka.
An improbable and triumphant story
This is the incredible but true story of Wayne Gardner, a kid from Wollongong, a little town of less than 300,000 inhabitants, that no one believed in and who grew up to be the hero who would define an era for Australians. He practiced one of the most dangerous and visually arresting sport on the planet: Grand Prix Motorcycle Racing.
This classic hero’s journey reminds us what it feels like to be the underdog, and yet climb a mountain, win a race or achieve our own individual dreams.
WHO IS EMMANUEL MACRON? [52’]
From underdog to favorite
From the Ministry of; Finance to his candidacy in the presidential elections, Emmanuel Macron quickly imposed himself in the French political landscape with subtlety and cleverness.
In this film, Emmanuel Macron tries to define his political line and his strategy that turned out to be fatal for the Socialist Party.
From underdog to favorite, we discover the French president from his beginning as a candidate.
LEPTIS MAGNA: ROME IN AFRICA [52’]
No limits for citizens of the Empire
The mainly Roman archaeological remains of Leptis Magna in Libya are exceptional in size and preservation.
In the 3rd century, the Roman emperor Septimius Severus, called "the African" because he was born in this ancient Carthaginian trading post, made it the showcase of a triumphant and dominating Rome.
Leptis Magna is a testimony to the Roman dream that posits that there were no limits for citizens of the Empire; they could even become Emperor in Rome as Septimius Severus.
LIVING STONES 2 [10x26’]
The wonders of archeology
This second season of LIVING STONES is devoted to the archeological heritage of the Mediterranean and the Middle East.
It unveils the greatest landmarks and the history that presided over their construction, development and ultimate decline. Through findings shared by prestigious archeologists and with the help of CGI, we can finally see and tour these monuments as they were built and revisit the great civilizations of Mesopotamia, Pharaonic Egypt, Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire.
The series also takes us through the cornerstones of History such as the development of mythical cities, the invention of the alphabet or the belligerent crusades.
MASSOUD, THE LION OF PANJSHIR [52’]
An icon of resistance to the Soviet Union and Islamic fanaticism
Less than 48 hours before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Commander Ahmad Shah Massoud was assassinated by two men disguised as journalists. He was an icon of resistance to the Soviet Union and, subsequently, to Islamic fanaticism. Today, the outlandish commander is as compelling a figure as ever.
With never before seen footage curated over 20 years, this film shows an unknown side of Massoud, a key figure of the 20th century who, by driving Soviet forces out of Afghanistan, was the prime instigator of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
THE SECRET OF THE STONES [8x52’]
On the trail of History
THE SECRET OF THE STONES unveils the greatest archeological landmarks of the Mediterranean and the Middle East and the history that presided over their construction, their development and ultimate decline.
Through findings shared by prestigious archeologists and with the help of CGI, we finally see these monuments as they were built and revisit the great civilizations of Mesopotamia, Pharaonic Egypt, Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire.
The series also takes us through the cornerstones of History such as the development of mythical cities, the invention of the alphabet or the belligerent crusades.