Venice 80: the political value of a reverse shot

Mostra 80 ended without surprises. The prize jury, led by President Damien Chazelle, attempted to unite those requests that crossed the competition, starting with the political need for dialogue with our times.

Bildungsroman (male gaze), written by women and in dialogue with the most modern ideas. Poor things from its first showing it established itself as a possible Golden Lion. By all accounts, the jury shared their general praise for Lido and maintained it until the end.
Lanthimos’ film works beautifully in both writing and direction, with a diva like Emma Stone on which it is built, from the character’s first disjointed steps the child/adult is brought back to life to her new awareness of the woman who affirms her. his choice. And this is a large-scale film that will – we hope, at least – be a success with the public and, most likely, will be included in one or more of the five Oscars, which is important for the Festival.

In a program that followed very different directions, the main focus was the production aspect – films with large budgets or such influential productions as A24 Priscilla Sofia Coppola, who one suspects is the source of one of the Volpi Cups intended for the main character Cailee Spaeny, not the most interesting actress if you remember Jessica Chastain in Memory Michel Franco, whose protagonist Peter Saarsgard was awarded, or Alba Rohrwacher in Horse Season Stefan Brise. And speaking of Franco: Memory size, at the end of the festival it was a (pleasant) surprise and his compositions would have deserved better than those El Conde Larren, who instead struggles to find balance and what’s more, it won’t even be released in theaters (it’ll be on Netflix in October), which is a big deal today.

Given the recurring political theme in various works, not only in the main competition, and the need to find narrative forms through which to respond to what reality claims, the jury selected a group of exemplary titles: from Green border Agnieszka Holland, who, to her surprise, may have expected more from the reception Evil doesn’t exist Hamaguchi, a metaphysical (and cinematic) meditation on the relationship between man and the environment in Japan, a country that has experienced brutal destruction, from the Hiroshima bomb to the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

And naturally, I’m the captain Matteo Garrone, the only Italian title of the six awarded in the competition – even if Italy, present en masse, took a lot this year. The film also won the Mastroianni Award for Best Emerging Actor for its leading man, the magnificent Seydoux Sarr, whose presence illuminates every frame with truth.

This is an important award I’m the captain in Italy and Europe today, because he gives a voice to migrants, and for the way he does it, in a “reverse frame” that chooses the point of view of those who make the “journey” along the Mediterranean route. If in Holland’s film migrants are the presence through which we Europeans are interrogated, I’m the captain goes through those “stages” that we know and which we know from the “first person”, conveyed in the fantastic visual dimension of images, and in the affirmation of freedom. There are not always reasons; people leave because they leave and have every right to do so. And governments, ours and European ones, must accept this: our time has come, and responding by building a fortress is inadequate and criminal.

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