Even the 71st Venice Film Festival in Venice gets archived. This year was marked by a significant decrease in public and professional attendeance, as has been the trend in recent years, but the Lido is always the Lido, and, in any case, the cinematic air we ‘breathe’ is very good. It is a competition so we decided to focus on the main prizes.
The Swedish film ‘En duva satt på en gren på och funderade tillvaron’, (‘A pigeon sitting on a branch pondered existence’), directed by Roy Andersson, won over the jury headed by French composer Alexandre Desplat and was awarded the Leone d ‘oro. In the end, the 39 grotesque and irreverent skits from the Swedish director, often given as favourite, had the better of the other participants.
Surprisingly Alba Rohrwacher and Adam Driver won the Volpi Cup for Best Actress and best Actor respectively, in the new film by Saverio Costanzo ‘Hungry Hearts’; a surreal and dramatic story based on the novel ‘The indigo child’ by Marco Franzoso.
However, ‘Il Giovane favoloso’ by Mario Martone, didn’t achieve much. In spite of a brilliant Elio Germano starring, this important film which manages to film the poet’s soul even outside the historical context it represented, only got to take home the ‘Piero Piccioni’ award for best soundtrack. (By the talented German electronic music artist, Apparat).
For the Special Jury Prize, ‘Belluscone, A Sicilian Story’, directed by Franco Maresco, was one of the funniest movies of the show, although the themes were a bit strong. The film, in typical Maresco style, tells the story of the unique relationship between Berlusconi and Sicily, through the misadventures of the Neopolitan impresario Ciccio Mira – undaunted supporter of Berlusconi and sometimes nostalgic for the mafia that used to be – and two of the artists in his ‘stable’, Erik and Victor Ricciardi. In search of success they decide to perform together in the streets of Palermo with the song written by the former, titled “I’d like to know Berlusconi.”
Among others, we especially liked the new film from director James Franco, (abituè of film festivals), ‘The sound and the fury’, adapted from a novel by William Faulkner published in 1929. Franco has skillfully represented a difficult story and the stream of consciousness of the American writer, set in Mississippi in the early 1900s.
The actor-director surprisingly filmed a scene from his new film ‘Zeroville’ set in the ‘70s, whilst he was greeting fans and media on the red carpet. There are rumours that this new film will be presented next year in Venice.
Much has been also said about ‘Pasolini by Abel Ferra’, starring, amongst others, Willem Dafoe (almost identical in appearance to the great master), Riccardo Scamarcio (in the role of Ninetto Davoli), the self-same Ninetto Davoli in the role of Epifania, Valerio Mastandrea, Maria de Medeiros, Adriana Asti and Salvatore Ruocco. The last days of Pasolini’s life seen through the eyes of Abel Ferrara. It is a film that has divided audiences and critics, but definitely one not to be missed.