The best films in Cannes arrive at the end of the competition, as per tradition. Returning to Iran after a European phase, Asghar Farhadi (Oscar for “The Client”, Golden Bear in Berlin for “The Separation”) poses geographically circumscribed questions with “Un Héros”, but which are not regional. The key theme is the contrast between the great beauty of millenary civilizations and the barbarism that has homologated the world, in the same forms and with the same means.
Symbol of the first the dazzling Tomb of Xerxes under restoration, where a prisoner for debt (the actor Amir Jadidi), on leave for 48 hours, goes to ask for help from the laborer brother-in-law. He has to convince his creditor to accept what little he can scrape together, and not to send him back to prison.
The new barbarism lies in the chain speculation that the diabolical intertwining of media, social networks and powers triggers on the good deed of a poor Christ. His sweetheart found some gold coins in a lost purse. Too little to change things, and Amir decides to have the rightful owner tracked down.
For the management of a prison that has to answer for too many suicides is a godsend. Hero of the day, interviewed on TV, incensed by a charity that provides him with a public collection, the poor man becomes the symbol of ‘healthy’ Iran. Maybe the state will even give him a job. He does not know that the mud of social media, the ‘rumors’ that go viral, the videos that capture his fury against the merciless creditor can demolish the ephemeral pedestal and turn him into a scammer.
It’s not Iran, it’s the world. Ready to exploit a child with very serious language handicaps – his son – to clean up the image of institutions. There is no better weapon than a tearful video, because the dull flock of social media snaps to attention. The responsibility of being a parent, of which Nanni Moretti has spoken so much in recent days, ‘this’ parent finds the strength to practice it, paying the prices. Because bribing is easy, and there is no return.
Militant Spike Lee, president of the jury, has stumbled upon the least busy Festival ever so far. There are four days left to finish the competition: that’s enough to raise the bar and change course.
Source: Huffington Post Italy Athena2 by www.huffingtonpost.it.
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