Does Italy really come out defeated by Cannes 2023? No. Because awards are never objective acknowledgments. But beware: if Tafazzi’s masochism looms once again, we need to dwell on the artistic quality of our films. Starting with Marco Bellocchio’s Kidnapped and Alice Rohrwacher’s La chimera.
As predicted, Anatomy of a Fall by Justin Triet won the Palme d’Or. A widely announced victory, for a good but not too exciting Competition. We’ve probably seen the best “things” in the side sections (such as How to Have a Sex by Molly Manning Walker, which won Un Certain Regard), leaving the Official Competition the scenic space of a competition that has never really come to life, despite probably and objectively seeing the triumph of the best film in Competition (we loved the film, as you can read in our review), perhaps on a par with Monster at Korea-eda.
However, while the Croisette is slowly returning to normal (tonight we dreamed of the gymnasium of barriers that surrounded the Palais), objective thought cannot fail to be directed to our cinema. Summing up: Italy lost, but won. An oxymoron? A parochial consolation? The glass half full? No, rather a lucid reflection on what we have seen in correlation with international productions.
Se The sun of the future Of Nanni Moretti represented a sort of divertissement, the main suggestions came from Kidnapped it’s yes Alice Rohrwacher con The malt. Both appreciated by the international press. But we repeat: it is not a tragedy to be defeated by Cannes. Rather, it can only become dangerously dramatic if one focuses on the context of the competition, without dwelling on the objective quality of the titles in question, and on how much they are a source of pride.
The sun of the future. Nanni quotes Nanni
Separate discussion for Il sol dell’avvenire. Already released in Italy (almost four million in receipts), Nanni Moretti’s film has never been among the favorites of Cannes 2023. A sort of French presentation, more than anything else. A further attestation of esteem from Thierry Frémaux, who has always held a “warm” place for the director of expensive daily. As we wrote in the review, The sun of the future it is a sort of summa of Nanni Moretti’s cinema. A summa, in this case, supported by perspicacious humour, as he said during the Cannes press conference. “I tell what I know, and I wanted to do it with a smile. Irony is a way to look at yourself and your flaws”. Although much loved in Italy, the film (presented with the international title, A Brighter Tomorrow) did not, however, convince the international critics, nor did it manage to scratch the attention of the Jury. Although the ballet on the red carpet, on the notes of Franco Battiato, was one of the most sincere moments of this 76th edition of the Cannes Film Festival.
Cannes 2023, day 11: the editorial staff’s favorite films
Kidnapped, a horror film
Kidnapped by Marco Bellocchio is a horror film. By tone, by vocation, by the (also) dreamlike management of the spaces. Not only that, it is yet another demonstration of how much the director has a brilliant lucidity, perhaps superior to his debut, or perhaps more complete and more aware. Literally, we are as amazed as we are shocked: an ever-expanding and ever-evolving author, brilliant in bringing his idea of cinema to light, tying it to stories and characters. Even towards those more sinister and more ambiguous characters, and therefore perfect to be framed. This is why Kidnapped is so malleable that it can be seen and read in an infinite number of ways. A stance, a historical document, the reactionary manifestation of power, religious and social. Amplifying the colors and tones (the soundtrack by Fabio Massimo Capogrosso is extraordinary), and retracing a terrible (and hidden) page of history. The confiscation by the Church of those children deemed to be Christian property. With a dazzling cinematographic quotation: Pope IX of a monstrous Paolo Pierobon, as if he were the dictator Adenoid Hynkel de The Great Dictator di Charlie Chaplin.
Kidnapped, in the name of the Pope King: faith and power according to Marco Bellocchio
The chimera, images and words
Some call it magical realism. For us, Alice Rohrwacher’s cinema is rather the maximum expression of an artisanal cinema, summed up in a brilliant visual substance and outside of any scheme. A cinema with a strong identity, yet universal (as we suggested in the review). So universal, that the director’s talent was somehow baptized by the endorsement of Martin Scorsese, whom she loved (how to blame him) Happy Lazarus. On the same color palette, mixing the past that returns and the present that escapes, here is another gem, The malt. Ancient title, millenary reverberations, fantastic substance. Ok, we’ve run out of words, let’s get to the point: if in Kidnapped by Marco Bellocchio, at the same time as Cannes 2023, there is the cerebral substance, in La chimera there is the narrative lightness of a story of human and temporal research, markedly linked to the territory and to the concept of storytelling. A pure story, free from frills, and therefore linked to images and words. Other than defeat The malt it’s a riot.