The Golden Lion for the French Audrey Diwan, women in the spotlight

The same message, two months apart. The Venice Film Festival sent a new feminist signal by unanimously awarding its Golden Lion to director Audrey Diwan, for a raw and intimate film on abortion, The event, and this after the Palme d’Or awarded to another Frenchwoman. “Unfortunately, when you work on abortion, you are always in the news,” said the 41-year-old French director, receiving her award, who said she “made this film with anger and desire”.

“I wanted it to be an experience,” a “journey in the skin of this young woman,” added the successor to the Chinese-American Chloé Zhao, 39, crowned last year for Nomadland before triumphing at the Oscars.

“Something is changing”

Four years after the Weinstein affair and the start of the great examination of conscience of the 7th art, the very gradual opening of the most prestigious awards to female directors is confirmed: in July, the Cannes Film Festival had therefore distinguished a young French director, Julia Ducournau, 37, Palme d’Or with the UFO Titanium, a feminist film that blows up the boundaries between genres in its own way. “Something is changing. A woman won the Oscar, a woman won the Palme d’Or, a woman won the Lion d’Or. It necessarily means something, it cannot be chance ”, underlined Audrey Diwan.

Her film, adapted from the eponymous autobiographical story by novelist Annie Ernaux, takes place in France in the 1960s, before abortion was legalized. It shows the journey of a young student who becomes pregnant, played by the Franco-Romanian Anamaria Vartolomei. This is the second film by Audrey Diwan, French novelist and journalist of Lebanese origin, who has co-authored the screenplay for several films including North Bac Where La French by Cédric Jimenez, then moved on to directing (but you are crazy). She becomes the fourth director to receive the most prestigious award in Venice since 2000.

Champion and Maradona

In the rest of the list, several films are marked by these questions: this is the case of Power of the Dog, by Jane Campion, who allowed the New Zealander to win the award for best achievement, twenty-eight years after her Palme d’Or for The Piano Lesson. The film, stifling behind closed doors in a cowboy world, starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Kirsten Dunst, tackles the question of exacerbated and toxic masculinity. “A Berlin Wall is falling,” said Jane Campion, of the presence of women on the prize list.

Released by Netflix, this film should not be released in theaters in France, just like another winner of the prize list established by the jury of South Korean Bong Joon-Ho (Parasite): Paolo Sorrentino. The Italian director won the Grand Prix for God’s hand, on his childhood in Naples, at the time of footballer Diego Maradona, shattered by the death of his parents.

The return of the Mostra

The influence of video platforms, stronger exits from the pandemic in the face of major studios, is once again measured by the winners of this 78th Mostra. The jury awarded the award for best actress to Penélope Cruz, for her role in Parallel Mothers, by Pedro Almodovar, who continues with his favorite actress to celebrate the strength of women and mothers in the face of cowardly or absent men. Among the actors, the jury distinguished the Filipino John Arcilla for his role as a journalist in search of the truth in On the Job 2 : The Missing 8.

After a mixed 2020 edition, marked by the pandemic and a lack of outstanding films in competition, the Venice Film Festival, the oldest film festivals in the world, has regained all its luster. And his influence was once again measured by the yardstick of American stars, who flocked to the red carpet of the Lido, which over the years has become a launching pad before the Oscars season. Matt Damon and Ben Affleck walked up the steps to The Last Duel, by Ridley Scott, a few days after the stars of Dune : Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac and Javier Bardem.

Source: 20Minutes – Une by

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