Sunday, May 19, 2013

Cannes 2013 Day 4


actress Eva Longoria attends the premiere of The Past 


Liam Hesmworth from Hunger Games

Jennifer Lawrence from Hunger Games

Husband and wife team Kate Capshaw and Steven Spielberg share a joke on the red carpet

Legendary director Wim Wenders with his wife Donata taking cover from the rain under a parasol


A gallery of stars from The Guardian:

Hunger Games on the red carpet from The Hollywood Reporter:

More red carpet fashion from The Telegraph:

Still more from The Telegraph:

while this would be their Cannes fashion page:

Cannes movie posters can be seen here from Mubi:

How about a mini-controversy, once more over the appropriateness of the spoken word, where you begin to wonder why the spoken truth seems to get outlawed at these highly public events, where offering an opinion or a personal view is quickly rejected by the producers or the publicity team, which suggests an overriding air of censorship hovers over the entire proceedings, Cannes 2013: Quinzaine Organizers Denounce Iranian Filmmaker, from Twitch:

A bit of controversy over at the Directors' Fortnight sidebar (or Quinzaine des réalisateurs) yesterday when Iranian director Alireza Khatami made some pretty scathing remarks for the stage about the Taiwanese film Taipei Factory. As reports:

Khatami said that he had been a victim of racism during the shoot in Taiwan. He denounced the film project as a political pawn in the re-election campaign of Taipei City's mayor. And he added that he was ashamed that he hadn't chosen to leave the project earlier.
The omnibus consists of four short films directed by four teams of directors, pairing a local director with a foreign counterpart. Khatami was partnered with Taiwan's CHANG Jung-chi, director of festival-favourite Touch of the Light, a celebrated drama about a blind pianist and a dance student.

Quinzaine issued the following statement after the incident (translatison via

The Directors' Fortnight condemns the defamatory remarks made by a director on Thursday during the question-and-answer session at the screening of Taipei Factory. We want to reassure the Taipei Film Commission of our complete support for the project, for its direction and for its spirit. We unanimously regret this baseless accusation. finished up their excellent reporting with this update:

The Taipei Film Commission today issued a statement on their website, only in Chinese, in which they described the director as "emotionally unstable," criticising his lack of trust in his team and need for word-for-word translation, noting that the other guest directors had a smooth experience shooting in Taipei.

Sounds like a bit of a tempest in a teapot but everyone loves a good on stage shake-up at Cannes.

Brian Brooks offers some interesting thoughts on censorship, excerpts from Film Comment:

Outside the press conference room is an artist rendering of Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi joyfully waving on what looks like a film stock version of a magic carpet flying above a minaret-filled skyline, and next to him is the word "Liberté." While Panahi has run afoul of authorities at home in Iran and is officially forbidden from practicing his craft, that did not stop him from collaborating on Closed Curtain, which premiered in Berlin in February.

It is not certain if fellow Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi saw the piece as he made his way in or out of the press room today, where he spoke about his latest film Le Passé (The Past), which will have its world premiere Friday night at the Festival de Cannes, but Farhadi did acknowledge state censorship and how that has shaped his filmmaking, even when working outside the borders of his own country.

His latest feature, a follow-up to his 2012 Best Foreign-language Oscar-winner A Separation, stars Bérénice Bejo (The Artist), Tahar Rahim (A Prophet) and Ali Mosaffa (Somewhere Else) and is set in Paris, though he hinted that even in another country, the official confines he worked under continue to inform his choices. Characteristic of Farhadi's past discussions in public when the subject of the regime in Tehran is brought up, he chooses his words carefully.

"There are two kinds of censorship which work in an official way, and there's a far more sinister one which springs from a person's inner-censorship, which comes from a social situation that surrounds someone or something like finance," said Farhadi. "When somebody works in a different [country], they're still working with assimilation—and that's a part of me. When I work with this assimilation, I try to see it as an asset, working within those [confines] and within that context."

Barbara Scharres is writing some of the best Cannes essays at the Roger Ebert site:

1.)  an excerpt from her take on the new Iranian film The Past:

Iranian director Asghar Farhadi has got to have many of his hopes for the future riding on his new film “The Past,” which premiered this morning in the Cannes competition. Having won countless international awards, including a Golden Globe and an Oscar for Best Foreign film with his 2011 “A Separation,” and knowing that the critics of the world, not to mention the Cannes jury members, are poised to pass judgment on the new film as a winner or a loser can’t be a comfortable position to be in today.

In many ways, “The Past” is a more engaging film than “A Separation.” The human dilemmas are equally complex, but, with a larger cast and more intertwined fates, Farhadi creates a story that is an even longer string of Gordian knots. To me, in consistently dealing with unresolvable moral complications, he is beginning to move into the arena once occupied by Polish director Krzysztof Kieslowski.

Ahmad (Ali Mosaffa, a well-known actor/director in Iran, and husband of “A Separation” star Leila Hatami) returns to Paris from Tehran to finalize a divorce from his French wife Marie-Anne (Berenice Bejo of “The Artist”) after a four-year separation. She has two daughters from a previous marriage, and, as she readily admits, the girls have come to love him as a stepfather. He is deferential and she is brisk and prickly, but the two fall into more intimate ways of relating, most especially in the shorthand abruptness of their quarrels.

If I have a quibble with “The Past” it is that once again, as in “A Separation,” Farhadi has fashioned his female main character Marie as the most flawed, and often the hardest to like among the cast. She’s beautiful and highly intelligent, but she’s also willful, skittish, quick to explode in childish anger, and often insensitive in her role as a mother.

By contrast, Ahmad, although an unsettled period in his life and marriage to Marie is referred to, is seen largely as patient and thoughtful peacemaker with an intuitive sense of how to create a warm home life (his scenes as a nurturing dad are among the film’s most satisfying). As beautifully crafted as this film is, and as uniformly superb the performances, the screenplay stacks the deck against Marie.

2.)  an excerpt commenting on the explicit gay sex in Stranger By the Lake:

“Stranger by the Lake” by French director Alain Guiraudie (“The King of Escape”), playing in Un Certain Regard, has to be some kind of first genre-wise; it’s a quasi-horror film in which the all-male cast is totally naked much of the time. Full-frontal nudity is the norm, and graphic gay sex, complete with ejaculation, is essential to the plot.

The film is set entirely on a remote and secluded nude gay beach and in the cruising area in the dense woods and thickets just above the stony shore. Most of the men who sunbathe and swim there have at least a nodding acquaintance with each other, if not more. One day a stranger appears and sits a distance away. Unlike the buff nude regulars, he doesn’t undress, and has a ruddy peasant face, a bad haircut, and a flabby, gone-to-seed body.

It’s rare to see a film as sexually graphic as “Stranger by the Lake” that succeeds in integrating this much explicit eroticism into the story without tipping over into porn. Director Guiraudie succeeds in this because virtually everything that happens is dictated in one way or another by lust, erotic obsession, and the mechanics of desire. The intensity of the coupling is inextricably tied to the passion for the cover-up of the murder.

A factor in making the film work is that even the minor characters have personality, even though they remain nameless. There are flashes of droll humor. One dweeb of a guy gets off on watching other men have sex. He stands nearby in the woods fondling himself, his baggy shorts down around his knees. He makes such a frequent appearance that it’s the film’s running joke. Another eccentric angrily tries to enforce his own made-up beach rules on the disparate group.

The beach is depicted as a wind-swept insular world. “Stranger by the Lake” never leaves this location, and the characters are seen in no other aspect of their lives. Guiraudie uses the many phases of daylight, including dusk, to dramatic effect, as well as the wind as it plays through the trees with varying degrees of subtlety or force.

Marie-Pierre Dauhamel has written an extraordinary account, revealing as much about Jia Zhang-ke as his film, A Touch of Sin, from Mubi:

Three excerpts: 
a.)  Many comments will no doubt be made about a "new" trend in Jia Zhangke's cinema. As he himself puts it, Tian zhu ding is a "martial arts film for contemporary China," paying direct homage to director Hu Jinquan (King Hu, as went his name in the West) and nourished by the vision of martial arts films like those of Chang Cheh. 

The English title A Touch of Sin is a direct reference to Hu's English title for Xianü  (Lady Errant Knight) or Touch of Zen, a 1970 film, selected in Cannes in 1975.

Murder and weapons have entered Jia's world. But beyond any consideration upon "new" or "renewal," Tian zhu ding appears so strongly rooted in a set of themes, characters and concerns that run through Jia's filmography that its most striking beauties may well be in the consistency and strength of his film world.

Jia's world has its own geography. It (re)organized China into a personal map, where almost  everything starts and ends in the filmmaker's native province of Shanxi. It is the starting point and the ultimate "home." This is where Xiao Wu the pickpocket operated, where the itinerant performers of Zhantai (Platform, 2000) roamed, where the sad heroes of Ren xiao yao (Unknown Pleasures, 2002) burnt their lives out, where the migrant worker of San Xia hao ren (Still Life 2006) and Shijie (The World, 2004) came from.  This is where Tian zhu ding starts and finishes at the end of a tragic "tour." The cities of Fenyang or Datong, the countryside and the murderous privatized coal mines have long been a compass to Jia's filmic China.

b.)  Jia's geography has its bitterly ironical El Dorado. It is a place that is never seen, but mentioned and referred to in all his films: Mongolia, the province north of Shanxi.  "It snows over Mongolia and Shanxi" says the weather forecast Lianrong reads to Xiao Hui at the Golden Age. Mongolia as a mysterious promise of another life, the goal of a journey that will never be made, a dream place, even if a real one. An utopia never to be realized, a new home never to be found, or a "next world" for hungry ghosts.  In Tian zhu ding, the Mongolia of San'er's bandit is Burma, a place where guns are cheap. To each his El Dorado.

On Jia's map, the "capital city" is never seen. It has a name, though: "Zhongnanhai in Peking." This is where Dahai wants to send his petition. Zhongnanhai is the domain which serves as central headquarters to the government and the Communist Party Central Committee. Some call it "the other forbidden city." In Tian zhu ding, it is enough for Dahai to write the name. But the post office girl insists that "the address is incomplete." Another Mongolia, another illusion. 

c.)  Jia's reference to wuxia cinema is far from being a simple wink at the genre or a mere tribute to famous directors.  In Jia's world, popular culture (but not the urban "movida" nor the official "folk stuff") is the very expression of a centuries-long history of oppression, rebellion, heroism and sacrifice, transposed into ballads, proverbs, opera genres and oral literature, created and transmitted in countryside gatherings as in urban neighborhoods and underworld.  In Tian zhu ding, this repertoire plays the exact part it plays in real life: it provides expression, postures and moves to the victims of injustice to whom expression and action have been denied. A heroic posture for the humblest, a dignified image for those who do not count. It goes for Dahai and his "Water Margin" move, for Xiaoyu's wuxia killing gesture, and even for San'er's use of the gun in the opening sequence.

In Tian zhu ding, operas and ancient stories play a part that appears strikingly consistent with Jia's affection for and understanding of popular culture: songs, stories and classical characters have always been keys to his films' lyricism. From the "Monkey King" (the hero of another classic novel) in Ren xiao yao to the songs and traditional shows that the film characters hear and watch in Still Life or The World.

While according to Peter Bradshaw, it's the Coen Brothers latest that is the best of the fest so far, a meditation on mediocrity and modernity in the 1960's New York folk scene – but not be so sombre as to forget the laughs, from The Guardian:

Cannes audiences just heard a clean, hard crack: the sound of the Coen brothers hitting one out of the park. Their new film is brilliantly written, terrifically acted, superbly designed and shot; it's a sweet, sad, funny picture about the lost world of folk music which effortlessly immerses us in the period.

The musical interludes are stunningly achieved: a pastiche chart single about President Kennedy and the moon mission brought the crowd I was among close to bopping in the aisles. This has something of Woody Allen movies like Sweet and Lowdown and Broadway Danny Rose; there's a playful allusion to Breakfast at Tiffany's and even a weird casting echo of Walter Salles's On the Road — and this movie is incidentally everything that dull film wasn't. But it is through-and-through a Coen brothers film, as pungent as hot black coffee.
Inside Llewyn Davis recounts a desolate week in the life of a fictional singer-songwriter of pre-Judas folk music in early-1960s New York: Llewyn Davis — a quietly angry, depressed and penniless young man, dragging his guitar from apartment to apartment, sleeping on couches, annoying everyone, unsure whether to continue in a world that does not understand him, and preparing to abandon his dream and returning to work in the merchant marine. There comes a time with any artist, when failure has become too painful and losses have to be cut. Has that time come for Llewyn Davis?
He is played with cool, shrewd, watchful restraint by Oscar Isaac, with longish black hair and an unkempt beard, looking for all the world like a young Martin Scorsese. The name "Llewyn" with its Welsh associations, of course deftly brings the word "Dylan" into our minds, although the question whether Llewyn is supposed to be a specific fictional variant of the great troubadour is resolved in the final moments. It could also, at a second subconscious remove, suggest the doomed figure of Dylan Thomas, who succumbed to celebrity and hard liquor in the United States.

Llewyn has been attempting a solo career, having just split from his performing partner, with whom he produced a poignantly unsuccessful and heartrendingly entitled LP, If I Had Wings, and the well-observed cover design is a joy, although the Coens are not looking for big laughs, like Spinal Tap or the folk spoof A Mighty Wind, but elegantly asserting design mastery, allowing us to savour how their exterior shots of New York do look exactly like these LP covers. Now he has a record of his own, Inside Llewyn Davis, unsold copies of which take up a big heavy cardboard box in his agent's office, a box he is brusquely invited to take away with him. Again the title is ironic: these moody opaque songs don't get us anywhere close to being "inside" the singer's mind.

He has a tense relationship with a successful folk duo, played by Justin Timberlake and Carey Mulligan, and strikes up a quick friendship with another would-be folk star, Al Cody, gloriously played by Adam Driver, whose booming single notes during the "Hey Mr President" recording session make that scene such comedy gold. Llewyn figures he might be able to make an audition in Chicago, and to that end shares a car with a smoulderingly Kerouac-y poet, played by Garrett Hedlund and a pompous jazz musician played by John Goodman with a habit that keeps him detained a long time in the men's room.
The film has some classic Coen tropes: wide establishing shots of eerily empty spaces and interiors with receding perspective lines, deadpan faces, querulously bespectacled old ladies and the mandatory old guy in a semi-darkened office. But the authorial signature is not quite so emphatic as of old, and the Coens treat themselves to a lot of straightforwardly funny lines.
Ultimately, the heartrending thing about Inside Llewyn Davis is its meditation on career success and career failure, and the unknowable moment when the one turns into the other. The Coens allow us to be unsure about the point of Llewyn's music: is it obviously brilliant and destined for success? Or is the point rather that he is talented, but not in a way that guarantees triumph? Llewyn is at least partly depressed about the way mediocrities do well in this world: silly singing acts in cable-knit sweaters. He could just be ahead of his time, but will the imminent arrival of Bob Dylan mean that his kind of difficult music will finally get what it deserves? Or just consign him even more brutally to an honourable second place? The intense sadness that permeates every chord and every note of his music, could be a desperate requiem for his own dreams, his own musical career. What an intense pleasure this film is, one of the Coens' best, and the best so far at Cannes.

The Cannes Criterion Forum is up and running: 

While Les Etoiles de la critiques is up and running as well: 

also Ioncinema's Critics' Panel 2013: 

While Neil Young from Jigsaw Lounge maintains the odds for winners:

to win the 2013 Palme d’Or
which have been shown to press in Cannes are in bold

 9/2  Kore-eda, Hirokazu – Like Father, Like Son
5/1  Farhadi, Asghar – The Past
13/2  Haroun, Mahamet Saleh — Grigris
13/2  Gray, James – The Immigrant
8/1  Payne, Alexander – Nebraska
- – -
10/1  Jia, Zhangke – A Touch of Sin
12/1  Soderbergh, Steven – Behind the Candelabra
14/1  Coen & Coen – Inside Llewyn Davis
16/1  Kechiche, Abdellatif – Blue is the Warmest Colour
16/1  Sorrentino, Paolo – The Great Beauty
- – -
20/1  Ozon, Francois – Young and Beautiful
20/1  Winding Refn, Nicolas – Only God Forgives
25/1  des Pallières, Arnaud – Michael Kohlhaas
25/1  Van Warmerdam, Alex – Borgman
25/1  Desplechin, Arnaud – Jimmy P.: Psychotherapy of a Plains Indian
33/1  Escalante, Amat – Heli
33/1  Bruni-Tedeschi, Valeria – A Castle in Italy
40/1  Polanski, Roman — Venus In Fur
50/1  Jarmusch, Jim – Only Lovers Left Alive
66/1  Miike, Takashi – Shield of Straw

Best Actor
3-1 Inside Llewyn Davis: Oscar Isaac

5-1 Grigris: Souleymane Démé
6-1 Nebraska: Bruce Dern
….. (solo, or with Will Forte and/or Stacy Keach)
7-1 Like Father, Like Son: Masaharu Fukuyama
9-1 Borgman: Jan Bijvoet

9-1 The Great Beauty: Toni Servillo (solo, or with others)
- – -
11-1 Behind the Candelabra: Matt Damon and/or Michael Douglas
11-1 The Past: Ali Mosaffa and/or Tahar Rahim
12-1 The Immigrant: Joaquin Phoenix (solo, or with Jeremy Renner)
12-1 Mathieu Amalric and/or Benicio Del Toro*
- – -
20-1 Michael Kohlhaas: Mads Mikkelsen
22-1 Shield of Straw: Takao Osawa and/or Tatsuya Fujiwara
25-1 Only God Forgives: Ryan Gosling and/or Vithaya Pansringarm
33-1 A Touch of Sin: male ensemble
35-1 Only Lovers Left Alive: Tom Hiddleston
40-1 Heli: Armando Espitia
50-1 Blue is the Warmest Colour:
….. Jérémie Lahuerte and/or Aurélien Recoing
50-1 A Castle in Italy: Louis Garrel
* any combination of Amalric and/or Del Toro in Jimmy P. and/or Amalric in Venus In Fur

Best Actress
2-1 The Past: Bérénice Bejo

9-2 The Immigrant: Marion Cotillard
5-1 Only God Forgives: Kristin Scott Thomas
- – -
10-1 Young and Beautiful: Marina Vacth 
11-1 Venus In Fur: Emmanuelle Seigner
14-1 Blue is the Warmest Colour:
….. Adèle Exarchopoulos and/or Léa Seydoux
18-1 Only Lovers Left Alive: Tilda Swinton and/or Mia Wasikowska
20-1 The Great Beauty: Sabrina Ferilli
20-1 Borgman: Hadewych Minis
22-1 A Castle in Italy:  Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi
25-1 A Touch of Sin: female ensemble
- – -
33-1 Grigris: Anaïs Monory
40-1 Like Father, Like Son: Machiko Ono (and/or others) 40-1 Heli: Andrea Vergara
50-1 Shield of Straw: Nanako Matsushima

The round-up of various links covering Cannes, several have been dropped:

Screendaily still has paywalls, but if you click on the reviews, they are open to the public: 

The Hollywood Reporter at Cannes:

David Hudson does all the links for each review at Fandor:

The Film Center's Barbara Scharres and Michał Oleszczyk from the Roger Ebert blog:

Cannes Diary from Film Comment:

Kevin Jagernauth and Jessica Kiang the indieWIRE Playlist:

Drew McSweeny and Guy Lodge & others from HitFix:

a round-up of indieWIRE reviews:

Daniel Kasman, Adam Cook, and likely others at Mubi:

The House Next Door at Cannes:

Mike D'Angelo at The Onion AV Club:

Keith Uhlich offering rival reviews from Time Out New York (Mike D'Angelo's former employer):

Cannes Fest at Time Out London:

The Guardian Cannes commentary:

David Jenkins from Little White Lies:

Eric Lavallee and Nicholas Bell from Ion Cinema:

Fabien Lemercier at Cineuropa:

Robert Koehler from Filmjourney:

Richard Corliss from Time Magazine:

Various writers at Twitch:

Julie Miller at Vanity Fair:

Sukhdev Sandhu and Robbie Collins from The Daily Telegraph:

Alex Billington from First Showing:

Brad Bevet from Rope of Silicon:

Charles Ealy at the Austin Movie Blog:

And, of course, George is back at Cannes this year, where he finds off the beaten track film fare:

Today's "bicycle movie" was a false alarm. The program notes for the German film "The Famous Five 2" promised that four kids and a dog would set out on a journey by bike unaccompanied by their parents. That they do, but its just a short bike trip before they set up camp and go hiking. There wasn't much more biking in this children's movie except when the kids have to chase after a guy on a motorcycle carrying a special order pizza to one of their group who has been kidnapped by a couple of thugs, who mistake him for someone else, someone they think holds the key to finding the most valuable jewel in the world.

This was the first film of the festival I left early, half-way through after I finished the can of ravioli that was my lunch for the day. I would have stayed if the kids had spent the whole movie riding their bikes, or if I didn't need a hunk of time to file my report for the day. There wasn't much of a gap between movies for the rest of the day. I might have had to cut back to six for the day rather than the seven I'd been managing.

For the fourth consecutive day an unplanned pregnancy out of wedlock was an element of at least one movie. There were three today just as on Day One. It was the centerpiece of Daniel Auteuil's "Fanny," a crowd-pleasing, semi-commercial adaption of a Pagnol story getting a screening in the Market. Auteuil is in town serving on Spielberg's exceptional jury, but he did not show himself at his movie, other than on screen.

Auteuil is the owner of a small bar in a French port city in Provence early last century. His son goes off to sea without telling him for a five year stint. He left behind a girl friend, who he doesn't know is two months pregnant. An older wealthy sail-maker has been trying to get her to marry him for some time. She decides to finally accept his proposal for the good of her child but fears the sail-maker would not have her knowing her condition. But he is delighted to raise the child as his own. There is much debate over these issues, but there is a happy resolution every time, even when the father of the baby makes a surprise, early return. Every conflict is settled amicably, if not nobly, even after heated debate. Pagnol shows the positive side of human nature with good-hearted, caring individuals.

Fathering a child as a 17-year and initialing denying it is one of the issues tormenting Benico Del Toro in the Competition film "Jimmy P." Jimmy is a native American suffering great trauma after WWII. He has severe headaches. His sister takes him to a special hospital for treatment. He seems physically sound despite a having suffered a head wound during the war that left a gash on the top of his head. A psychiatric specialist in Native Americans, played by a quirky Mathieu Amalric flaunting his French accent, is called in to help. The two lead actors deliver worthy performances, but the script portraying psychoanalysis at work left a bit to be desired.

It's not clear if the pregnancy in the Un Certain Regard film "Bends" from Hong Kong is planned or not. The pregnant woman is the wife of a chauffeur. It is their second child, and since they live in China, across the border from Hong Kong, where the chauffeur works for the wealthy wife of a banker, they are only allowed one child. There is a heavy fine for having a second. This is the first of all these pregnancy films to bring up the A-word. At one point as their options seem to be evaporating, the wife says, "Maybe we should have an abortion." They are trying to avoid the fine by having the child in Hong Kong. But the chauffeur must either get permission to bring his wife to Hong Kong for medical reasons or smuggle her in. The chauffeur asks a favor of the head nurse of a hospital to permit it, but she absolutely refuses. The chauffeur's boss has problems of almost equal magnitude herself. Her husband has not been home for days and her credit cards have been cancelled. She starts selling off her art work.

My day's choices also included a pair of movies about 30-year olds taking a stand against the consumer materialistic world. One goes off to the Amazon to assist a nun in her work. The other is a videographer in Finland who decides to put his all too-many belongings in a storage locker to prove happiness does not come from having a lot of stuff. He begins a year of having nothing other than an apartment, without even a refrigerator, to prove he can get along without them. He allows himself to recover one item a day for a year. He also takes a vow not to buy anything other than food for the year.

The movie was appropriately called "My Stuff." The first item he retrieves is a coat, which he wraps himself in to stay warm as he is otherwise naked as sleeps in his empty apartment on the first night of his withdrawal. It is his only possession. He is so happy when he recovers his mattress a while later he hugs and kisses it. He thinks he can be happy with not much, but he seems very happy with many of the things he gets back. On day eleven he recovers his bicycle and on day twelve his helmet. When his bike is later stolen he must borrow a bike from a friend. It is a necessity, as after 200 days he gets a date with a woman for a bike ride. He must also figure out a way to cut the Kryptonite lock from her bike, as the key is stuck in the lock. That takes five hours of several different attempts. He was reduced to such trivialities without having any but superficial insights to offer.

"There Will Come a Day" wasn't fully realized either, but it was much more genuine and heartfelt. The young Italian woman featured in this film begins a South American sojourn accompanying a nun on a boat going down the Amazon stopping in at small villages promoting Catholicism. The young woman isn't convinced that encouraging them to do observe rituals they do not understand, such as confessing, is right. She eventually goes off on her own and tries to help the indigent in a larger city.

"Viva La Liberta," another Italian movie rounded out my day. This comedy about a politician who disappears while his look-alike brother masquerades as him while he regains his will was just filler. It had a fine performance by the actor playing the two brothers, and some commentary on the moral vacuity of Italy, while being pleasantly diverting entertainment.

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