Ben Affleck and Matt Damon’s “Last Duel” dazzles in Venice

AFP Agency

September 11, 2021 // The famous stars Ben Affleck, Matt Damon and Adam Driver paraded this Friday in Venice to present the dazzling film by Ridley Scott, “The Last Duel”, scheduled on the eve of the closing of a festival marked by productions Hollywood and social and political cinema.

Venice 78th edition

The spectacular blockbuster, presented out of competition and set in medieval France, arrived with all the elements of the veteran director’s films “Gladiator”, “Blade Runner” and “Alien”, with their impressive armor, exciting horseback riding and a story unconventional.

The oldest film festival in the world closes with a good dose of international stars, including Jennifer Lopez, Affleck’s current partner, whose arrival in Venice on Thursday aroused much anticipation.

The fans of the nicknamed ‘Bennifer’ waited to see them arrive at the official gala, as they did almost two decades ago and despite the wall that protects the red carpet due to sanitary measures due to the coronavirus.

The couple of the year arrived in a taxi boat amid a cloud of flashes and “paparazzi” to continue feeding their new love affair.

The release of the latest film by the 84-year-old Briton Scott further confirms that the Venetian festival continues to be the European showcase for major American productions and also the start of the race to obtain a coveted Oscar, as has happened in recent years. among them with “Nomadland” of the Chinese based in the United States Chloé Zhao, member this year of the jury.

Venice, which also invited “Dune” out of the competition, a super-production full of special effects on the homonymous top science fiction novel, still preserves its identity, by presenting a lot of auteur, social cinema in and out of the official competition , political, denouncing, which reflects the contradictions and abuses of the past and present.

Political and denunciation cinema

Of the 21 films in competition for the Golden Lion, the Russian “Captain Volkonogov has escaped” also stands out, directed by Natasha Merkulova and Aleksei Chupov, about the purges that in 38 the Soviet political police -the NKVD- of Leningrad practiced.

The story of the captain who flees with a list containing the names of the disappeared with the intention of denouncing their execution to the family of each one of them, is a modern parable.

“This film is not only about Russia, it is a fairly universal statement because we are concerned about the whole world and what is happening to it,” Merkulova confessed to the press.

The devastating capitalist system, which exploits both its workers and its successful executives mercilessly, is the complaint that the Frenchman Stéphane Brizé launches with the film “Another world”, when closing this Friday with a current argument the competition for the Lion of Gold.

“I wanted to get out of the simplistic dialectic that boils down to the fact that managers are bad and workers are good,” Brizé warns, calling into question an entire system.

Divided between his bosses who demand results and his workers who demand assurances, Philippe, played by an applauded Vincent Lindon, indeed finds himself facing an abyss.

Critics’ Favorites

Based on the international critics’ score, compiled by the festival newspaper Ciak, in addition to the Russian film, the films by New Zealand Jane Campion and Pedro Almodóvar’s “Parallel Mothers” are among the favorites for the highest award. his way the issue of the disappeared during the Franco dictatorship.

On the other hand, all critics agree with the magnificent performance of Kristen Stewart in the role of Princess Diana in the film “Spencer” by Chilean Pablo Larraín, which makes her the main candidate for the Best Actress award.

The jury chaired by Korean Bong Joon-ho will announce the winners of the 78th edition on Saturday at an official ceremony at the Cinema Palace.

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