The Venice International Film Festival unveiled a starry lineup of world premieres for September — including Pablo Larrain’s “Spencer,” starring Kristen Stewart as Princess Diana and Ridley Scott’s medieval drama “The Last Duel,” featuring Matt Damon, Ben Affleck and Adam Driver
The oldest film festival in the world is kicking off its 78th edition Sept. 1 on the Lido with the premiere of Pedro Almodóvar’s “Madres paralelas,” starring Penelope Cruz. “Spencer” and “Madres paralelas” are among 21 features premiering as part of the official competition, which has often helped guide eventual Oscar best picture nominees and even winners.
Other films competing for the Golden Lion include Ana Lily Amirpour’s fantasy “Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon,” with Kate Hudson and Craig Robinson; Maggie Gyllenhaal’s adaptation of Elena Ferrante’s “The Lost Daughter,” starring Olivia Colman and Dakota Johnson; Paul Schrader’s crime drama “The Card Counter,” with Oscar Isaac and Tiffany Haddish, and Paolo Sorrentino’s “The Hand of God.”
Edgar Wright’s stylish psychological thriller “Last Night in Soho,” with Thomasin McKenzie and Anya Taylor-Joy, will also have its premiere in Venice out of competition before heading to the Toronto Film Festival.
Jane Campion’s “The Power of the Dog,” with Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst and Jesse Plemons; Denis Villeneuve’s adaptation of “Dune,” starring Timothée Chalamet, and “Halloween Kills” were all previously announced as part of the slate. Campion’s film, about brothers in 1920s Montana, is another competition title, and one of two Netflix films debuting at the festival.
Last year, Chloe Zhao’s “Nomadland” premiered at the scaled-down but still in-person festival and was awarded the Golden Lion. This year, Zhao will help decide who gets that prize as a member of the main jury led by fellow Oscar winner Bong Joon-ho, who directed “Parasite.”
Following on the heels of the Cannes Film Festival, the Venice Film Festival is expected to mostly return to its full glamour in September. The festival runs through Sept. 11.
Coty has announced Oscar-nominated actor, Adam Driver, as the face of Burberry new men’s fragrance which will be launched in August 2021. This will be Riccardo Tisci’s first fragrance for the house.
“I’m very happy to be working with Burberry on this campaign, and with Riccardo Tisci in representing his first fragrance for the brand,” stated Driver
The actor wore Burberry to the premiere of Annette at the opening night of the Cannes Film Festival. His outfit included a black English-fit mohair-wool tuxedo with silk-satin peak lapels and side stripes, a white cotton-poplin shirt, black silk-satin bow tie, black silk-satin cummerbund, black leather belt, palladium-plated personalized letter motif cufflinks, and black leather Derby shoes.
More information on the new fragrance will be released as the launch date approaches.
Read more at the source.
Warning: this article touches on subject matter that some readers may find distressing
Ridley Scott’s Gladiator was a huge success, if a very fictionalised account of ancient Rome – but his next historical epic looks to stick very closely to a true story.
Despite taking place in the fourteenth century, The Last Duel tells the surprisingly timely story of a rape case, the judicial proceedings that follow and the treatment of victims that speak out.
The film is based on The Last Duel: A True Story of Trial by Combat in Medieval France, a non-fiction book by medieval literature specialist Eric Yager that recounts the story of how the case led to the last legally sanctioned duel in France’s history.
Beware of possible spoilers for the film below – particularly on the outcome of the titular duel.
The film – co-written by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck – takes place around halfway through the Hundred Years War, a series of conflicts between England and France over claims to the French crown. French knight Jean de Carrouges (played by Matt Damon in the film) took part in several campaigns against the English in the Fourteenth Century, in locations such as Scotland and Normandy.
In 1380 Carrouges married Marguerite de Thibouville (Jodie Comer), daughter of the controversial known traitor Robert de Thibouville who had sided against multiple French Kings in territorial disputes. It seems Carrouges wished to use his father-in-law’s claim to win back a valuable estate that was given to a man who would become very important later on – Jacques Le Gris (portrayed by Adam Driver).
However, Le Gris was a favourite of property owner Count Pierre d’Alençon, who dismissed Carrouges’s lawsuit. Carrouges, therefore, lost favour in the court while Le Gris became wealthy and popular while developing a womanising reputation, but nonetheless the two eventually reconnected and put an end to their feud – with Carrouges even introducing Le Gris to his wife Marguerite.
Read more at the source.
Well that’s one way to kick off Cannes.
“Annette,” the opening-night film of the festival that stars Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard, turned some heads Tuesday with some surreal, head-scratching moments and a few divisive reactions from critics, even as it earned a five-minute standing ovation from the crowd.
“Holy Motors” director Leos Carax’s latest film is a pop opera with a story and original songs by the duo Sparks, and the movie features everything from a marionette baby, musical head trips and, as at least one critic pointed out, two shots of Driver even briefly singing into Cotillard’s vagina.
“I thought Adam Driver doing Bo Burnham-style stand-up and having a horrifying robot baby with Marion Cotillard was weird but ‘Annette’ just kept outdoing itself,” critic Iana Murray wrote of the film. “A true s—post of a movie. Don’t know if i like it yet but i respect the audacity.”
TheWrap’s Steve Pond wrote in his review of the film out of Cannes that when “Holy Motors” premiered at the festival nine years ago, it was such a radical shock placed in the dead center of so many other films. That film, despite being a critical darling, had its fair share of polarized reactions and boos at Cannes. But “Annette” is the opening night film and is setting the tone this year, and it doesn’t quite reach the level of crazy of its predecessor.
But when Carax’s new film, “Annette,” premiered at Cannes on Tuesday, it faced a tougher road. The French filmmaker, after all, has the opening-night competition slot this year, which means his new film can’t come as a breath of fresh, weird air the way his last film did. This year, he’s setting the tone, not providing the contrast.
“Besides, ‘Annette’ (an Amazon Studios release) may be bonkers in its own way, but it’s less bonkers than “’Holy Motors’ was,” Pond wrote. “Carax set the bizarro bar very high nine years ago, and his first movie since then proves that he’s still a nutty filmmaker by turning his nuttiness into a full-fledged musical. That’s fun, for a while, and then it’s kind of exhausting, something that ‘Holy Motors,’ with a similar two-hour-and-20-minute running time, never was.”
“Annette” is set in present-day Los Angeles and stars Driver as a stand-up comic and Cotillard as a world-renowned opera singer who together fall in love and make a passionate, glamorous couple, but find their lives turned upside down when their first child, Annette, turns out to be a mysterious little girl with an exceptional destiny.
Read more at the source.
This year’s Cannes Film Festival opener stars Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard in a musical cum celebrity satire. It’s variously embarrassing and delightful, writes Nicholas Barber.
The opening-night film at this year’s Cannes Festival is an embarrassing folly that is almost impossible to sit through. It’s also a daring, unique passion project that has you gasping with delight. I tipped back and forth between these two assessments so often during the 140 minutes of Annette that I gave myself a dose of seasickness.
The film is a surreal, avant-garde rock opera directed by Leos Carax, maker of The Lovers on The Bridge and the fabulously bonkers Holy Motors. It’s written, with some help from Carax, by Ron and Russell Mael, aka veteran pop duo Sparks (the subject of Edgar Wright’s new documentary, The Sparks Brothers). The Maels can be spotted here and there in Annette, but their main onscreen appearance is in the uplifting opening scene, which has the band rattling through a song, So May We Begin, in a recording studio. After the first verse, the Maels stride out into the street, still singing, pursued by their quartet of backing vocalists. As they process around Los Angeles they are joined by Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard, among others, and the camera stays just ahead of them (a bit like in The Verve’s Bittersweet Symphony video) in one unbroken shot. It’s a joyous sequence – the most joyous part of the film, in fact – and it promises that we’re in for a rousing, arthouse version of La La Land. As it turns out, Annette is closer to an arthouse version of A Star Is Born. The first hour of the film, at any rate, is about the fraying relationship between two performers, as a woman’s career rises and a man’s falls. After that it gets much weirder.
Driver plays Henry McHenry, a bilious comedian who likes to wear a dressing gown and slippers for his misanthropic (and dreadful) stand-up show, The Ape of God. Cotillard plays his girlfriend, Ann, an opera diva who is considered by the world to be far too good for him: a report on “Showbizz News” is captioned “Beauty and The Bastard”. Nonetheless, Henry and Ann marry and have a baby, Annette, who happens to be a creepy, Chucky-like wooden puppet with the glowing heart of ET The Extra Terrestrial.
There were times when the film was so crass yet so outlandish that I wondered how it ever got made – and I suspect that the two-word answer is ‘Adam Driver’
The most captivating thing about all this is that the film is sung-through – that is, there is hardly any dialogue that hasn’t been set to the Maels’ pounding score. Henry and Ann are always singing, whether they’re fending off the paparazzi, hurtling through California on Henry’s motorbike, having sex, or, in Cotillard’s best moment, backstroking across the swimming pool outside their secluded house. It’s a wonderfully strange conceit, although anyone hoping for a toe-tapping musical might be disappointed that the Maels favour repeated chants over witty rhymes and complete songs. It gets tiresome to hear people intoning “Why did you become a comedian” and “We love each other so much” over and over again. Another sticking point is that, to begin with, the film’s formal radicalism isn’t matched by its conventional visuals or its banal story. Once the novelty of the relentless music wears off, you realise that Annette is a humourless, superficial celebrity satire that feels a decade or three out of date.
Read more at the source.
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