News from the Locarno Festival
 

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“Chevalier” by Athina Tsangari

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Athina Rachel Tsangari is back at Locarno with her eagerly awaited new feature, Chevalier, which sees six men holidaying on a luxury yacht engage in an entertaining but ruthless competition. The microcosm provided by the boat becomes a pretext for exposing the desire to come first, but also an obsession with perfection that inevitably reflects on the terrible situation Greece is going through at the moment.

Another relationship with national culture passes through a much finer and, so to speak, more intimate filter in the other film in competition: the passion that ties a father and a son to football, much more than just a national sport in Brazil. O Futebol is a story of transmission set against the backdrop of a national tragedy – better to forget how the last world championship ended! – where cinema functions as a glorious magnifying glass between the very small and the very big.

The film by Ben Rivers, also back in Locarno two years after his most recent work, is based on the idea that cinema imposes an alternative world on the real one. The Sky Trembles and the Earth Is Afraid and the Two Eyes Are Not Brothers travels to an isolated community that starts with the known forms of a film within a film before closing itself inside a universe in pure Peckinpah style.

The transition from civilization to a wild state is also the basis of the latest film by Júlio Bressane, which inaugurates the Tela Brilhadora project. His Garoto (another title that recalls the director of Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid) is an irresistibly ironic film that involves a place of inexhaustible fascination, the desert populated by enormous erratic boulders where Bressane shot his wonderful São Jerônimo.

Carlo Chatrian
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