The Venice Film Festival reached its equator this Sunday with three favorite films for the Golden Lion: ‘It was the hand of God’ by Paolo Sorrentino, ‘The power of the dog’ by Jane Campion and ‘Official Competition’, by the Argentineans Gastón Duprat and Mariano Cohn, all of them received with applause.
In Venice the critics coincide in pointing out these three titles as best proposals of the festival so far Although the last word will, of course, be the jury, chaired by South Korean Bong Joon-ho, who will decide on the awards on September 11.
In the classification that the contest distributes every day, the critics believe that one of the best films is’ È stata la mano di Dio ‘(‘ It was the hand of God ‘), the story with which the author of’ La Grande bellezza ‘(2014) remember the tragic loss of his parents. A film set in his native Naples and whose title alludes to the Argentine star Diego Armando Maradona: “I believe in his semi-divine power,” he acknowledged, recalling that he saved his life by going to see him at the stadium, while his parents died on a trip to the mountains. .
Criticism also praises Campion’s return to the cinema twelve years after ‘Bright star’ (2009), this time with the adaptation of Thomas Savage’s book, ‘The power of dog’, a lyrical and tense western in which nothing and nobody is what they seem.
Another of the films that has surprised the Official Selection is that of the Argentines Duprat and Cohn, ‘Official Competition’, five years after trying it in Venice with ‘The Illustrious Citizen’, which earned the Volpi Cup to its protagonist, Oscar Martínez. A satire on the ego and the eccentricities that surround the profession of interpretation in which the Spanish Antonio Banderas and Penelope Cruz have shone.
In the cliques of the festival’s press room, many are those who point to the latter in the pools for the best actress award, for her participation in another of the titles in competition, ‘Parallel mothers’, by Pedro Almodovar, also at the top of the classification.
Greater division between critics has generated the biopic about Diana de Gales by Chilean Pablo Larraín, ‘Spencer’, starring Kristen Stewart, as well as ‘The card counter’, with Oscar Isaac and directed by Paul Schreder, writer of ‘Taxi driver’ (1976).
The riskiest bet has been ‘Il Buco’ by Michelangelo Frammartino, the recreation of a speleological exploration in the impoverished south of Italy in the Sixties proposed as a kind of social x-ray on inequality with the prosperous north. Is about a play without dialogue, without artificial lighting, without music or actors, which nevertheless manages to keep the public in the armchair, following the descent through the walls of the grotto.
Mixed feelings has generated ‘The lost daughter’. the adaptation of the novel ‘La figlia negra’ by Elena Ferrante shot by Maggie Gyllenhaal and starring Olivia Colman.
In the absence of knowing the opinion of the critics, this Sunday Ana Lily Amirpour’s ‘Mona Lisa and the blood moond’, a tribute to the adventure cinema of the Eighties with a fantastic tone, and ‘Illusions perdues’ by Xavier Giannoli, about a 19th century French poet.
In this way Venice faces the second part of its festival, which in these days has seen stars that were missing last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, such as the cast of ‘Dune’, headed by Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Javier Bardem.
In the next few days, other films will be released in competition for the highest award, starting tomorrow Monday with ‘La caja’ by Venezuelan Lorenzo Vigas, six years after he became the first Latino to conquer the Mostra with ‘From there’.
The seguirán ‘L’Évenement’ by Audrey Diwan, ‘Reflection’ by Valentyn Vasyanovych, ‘Qui rido io’ by Mario Martone, ‘Captain Volkonogov escaped’ by Natasha Merkulova y Aleksey Chupov, ‘Fraks out’ by Gabriele Mainetti, ‘América Latina ‘de los hermanos Damiano y Fabio D’Innocenzo,’ Leave no traces’ by Jan P. Matuszynski, ‘On the job: The Missing 8’ by Erik Matti y ‘Another world’ by Stephane Brizé.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.