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Mental health in the age of digitization… between harm and good

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“Asharq al-Awsad” at the Venice Film Festival: the new Polanski comedy maker without laughter

In 2020, the corona pandemic made it possible to enter venues without tickets at world festivals. Your press card issued by the festival is sufficient, so you can enter the hall and sit wherever you want. If you find someone ahead of you in your preferred seat, you choose someone else. A beautiful, simple and easy picture.

After “Corona”, some people wanted to take advantage of the need to differentiate the seats of the audience and allocate an empty seat between each two, and that was enough. But today the process of entering and seating has become complicated: you first have to visit the “system” which informs you of available seats. As the hall map indicates that majority of the seats are reserved, you usually choose the seat you don’t want. How about when you’re one of the first to enter? If you don’t know, there is no point in seeking knowledge. Just select what is available.

You should do this every day or two, and early in the morning if you insist on choosing a suitable seat, and not at the end of the hall or in front of it or at a distance, right or left.

That’s the only complaint I’ve heard so far, as the rest of the film screenings, concerts and general order are in good shape.

The films are interesting, varied and a percentage of them are good, but most of them are above average. It is not without its surprises.

A shot from “El Conte” (Fabula).

Pinochet is a vampire

After the unexceptionally acclaimed opening film “Commander,” the festival entered its truest mood with “El Conte” by Chilean director Pablo Lloren. “Post Mortem” (2010) and “Neruda” (2016); Or a community like “Jackie” about John F’s wife. Kennedy (2016), and “Spencer” (2021) about Princess Diana.

With his new black and white film; He returns to discuss the political period that affected his country between 1973 and 1990, when Augusto Pinochet ruled Chile with an iron fist. Lauren’s previous films like “Tony Manero” and “No” have referenced the aforementioned period in more ways than one. In these biographies, the director does not try to reveal the facts of life, but constructs them. He did not concern himself with the “life” story, but rather treated the character from a general historical perspective, so that it focused on what happened from the outside, but because of it.

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Because we don’t see Pinochet’s story or select phases of his life, this is what we get to know about him as he lives on a remote farm with his spouse, Fyodor. (Alfredo Castro), and his five children. He is now a vampire and thinks of doing something that will allow him to die, deciding not to drink blood in the first place, which gets a response from his children as they are eager to inherit him. But Pinochet changes his mind and starts hunting down his victims. Instead of biting like Dracula, it’s his turn to cut the throat and rip the heart out of its place. The film tells us that Pinochet keeps the hearts in the fridge so that he and his assistant can squeeze out the blood and drink it.

The symbol is understandable and clear. Pinochet wasted the blood of his people and controlled their lives. Previous horror films have used this code socially, but the film goes beyond that with a clarity of purpose and a terrifying perspective that differs from the horror we usually see in vampire films. A kind of violence and brutality pushes the film to the edge between accepting it as a protest and rejecting it as a form of protest.

Roman Polanski on the set of “The Palace” (Elizio Pictures).

Life on wheels

Another film about another life, “Ferrari”, is about racing car designer Enzo Ferrari in a certain era of his life, when he bet to achieve success in the racing fields. The plot is integrated with the character’s family situation, while stirring the emotions in Ferrari’s chest and preventing him from feeling happy until he achieves the desired success.

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This is director Michael Mann’s first film since “Blackhat” 8 years ago. He was very active in the nineties, then in the first twenty years of this century, and with amazing success, he starred in “Heat” (1995), “The Insider” (1999), “Ali” (2001), and “Miami Vice” (2006).. .

His return to work is unknown as he studied, wrote and re-wrote for the film for about 3 years before going on set last year. The result is a good film about the struggle of the Ferrari car maker, who succeeds despite the obstacles, some of which are in his married life (Penelope Cruz), who learns that he has betrayed himself with a woman (Shailene Woodley). She gave birth to a baby boy 10 years ago.

Adam Sandler plays Ferrari and holds his own for a character that lacks talent. Some scenes in the film are not as bright and good as others. Racetracks are successful because they rely on a combination of technical channels and photography, using cameras of different sizes, types and focal points.

Polanski spikes

Out of competition, there are films produced by more than eighty directors: Liliana Cavani, Agnieszka Holland, Dee Allen and Roman Polanski… Is this the last stop for them? For a generation? Cinema?

Roman Polanski’s new film “The Palace,” shown here, may or may not be his last stand (he announced his retirement at age ninety). This is a good reason to present a wonderful and valuable movie … but “Palace” does not bear any of these descriptions.

The palace has been described as a grand Swiss hotel in a remote mountain area. It welcomes morning customers to say goodbye to 1999 and welcome the New Year. Some may remember that there was a lot of talk about the end of the world as the year 2000 approached. “It’s not the end of the world” is the first line of the film, hotel manager Hansulli (Oliver Masucci) tells his staff just before the guests. will start coming. She is the only character out of everyone we see that the director doesn’t criticize. The prisoners are all stupid characters, even if they don’t seem like it. Also sinful and emotional. She uses her wealth foolishly and drinks to the point of intoxication, prompting the audience to question the usefulness of a large gathering.

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The answer is that the director wanted it to stigmatize this community. He wanted to create a satirical comedy dealing with the behavior of these people, and although it seemed contrived, this led to a movie with its content.

Comedy at first, gradually turned black. There is nothing commendable in either category. The laughs are few and far between, but everything that happens is under the weight of vulnerability, a desire to intensify these people’s mistakes to create what can be considered entertainment. Polanski is important. The first task of this film is for Polanski who wants to be light, yet heavy. Despite his previous important works like “Macbeth,” “The Pianist” and “The Ghostwriter,” he squanders his talent on a film that is neither a breakthrough nor a breakthrough. The first point recedes, the second place and time come out, because he reached the age of ninety.

Gathering without an appointment, these characters want to celebrate the New Year, but in the hours before midnight, paradoxes occur, such as the death of a very rich husband and his wife trying to hide it and emptying the dog’s stomach. Beds after a sick woman (Fanny Arden) feeds it caviar. There is always a man cursing and belittling others, another resorting to farm beds to satisfy his needs… Is this really what the audience waiting for Polanski’s work wants to see?

There is a film called “Hotel” by the unknown Richard Quinn, which he made in 1967. It has normal characteristics but can be very fun if entertaining.

Nadia Barnett
Nadia Barnett
"Award-winning beer geek. Extreme coffeeaholic. Introvert. Avid travel specialist. Hipster-friendly communicator."

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