The chilling of Franco-American relations over Iraq makes this a peculiar time for a festival celebrating French cinema. But well before French President Jacques Chirac refused to say "oui" to President Bush's push for U.N. military action, plans were set for the 7th annual City of Lights/City of Angels Film Festival, which presents 11 new French features at the Directors Guild of America. The series starts promisingly with Monday's opening night gala presentation of the West Coast premiere of Laurent Bouhnik's elegant adaptation of the Stefan Zweig novella "24 Hours in the Life of a Woman." The sweepingly romantic tale, in the fatalistic grand European manner, tells of a man in his 70s (Michel Serrault) giving reluctant shelter to a teenage beauty (Berenice Bejo) who is fleeing her hotheaded boy- friend. Agnes Jaoui also stars. DGA, 7920 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood. Monday through Friday at 7:30 p.m., with Saturday screenings at 2, 4:30 and 8 p.m. Info: www.cityoflightsfestival.org.