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Venice: Hugh Jackman and Casey Affleck, vulnerability and family – Culture & Entertainment

Stories of fathers in awe, welcoming, perhaps inadequate, vulnerable, so good as to make their children feel cornered, stories of expectations and hardship, of failures and redemptions and stories of mothers who reject motherhood to the extreme and of adolescents whose mental health is severely tested these days. Stories of families trapped in too much love. The red carpet is on fire for Hugh Jackman, starring with Laura Dern and Vanessa Kirby in Florian Zeller’s moving THE SON (in competition), for Casey Affleck in Bill Pohlad’s drama DREAMIN ‘WILD (out of competition), the stars of the eighth day of Venice 79.
And the leader of the League Matteo Salvini in a black tuxedo makes the red carpet as the boyfriend of the producer Francesca Verdini of the documentary by Anselma Dell’Olio ‘FRANCO ZEFFIRELLI, REBEL CONFORMIST’. But it is the strong themes that stand out, such as those of the two films mentioned and of SAINT OMER by Alice Diop, the only first film in competition this year, based on a true story of infanticide that nails you to the chair and becomes a flag, too. if the director wants to represent only herself, the complexity of the female universe of immigrant women. The Senegalese (in the film Guslagie Malanda) accused of killing her 15-month-old daughter by abandoning her to the tide of the North Sea does not arouse compassion but she is not unique, she is unexpectedly cultured and this disturbs. It is also the day of Stefania Sandrelli Bianchi 2022 award and protagonist of the film at the Days of Authors, ACQUA E ANICE, special event, Corrado Ceron’s first work. “It’s a seniority award, I gave a lot to the cinema”, she says, “but I’m not done, I won’t be a former actress as long as I play a very small part”. And by Edoardo Pesce who with the newcomer Yothin Clavenzani brought Fulvio Risuleo’s NIGHT GHOST to Horizons.
On the red carpet in the afternoon the Ukrainian flag flies: it is brought by the director Evgeny Afineevsky and the delegation of the documentary out of competition FREEDOM ON FIRE: UKRAINE’S FIGHT FOR FREEDOM, an impressive collection of testimonies of cruelty and very serious violations of human rights in the theater of war . “After Ukraine, it will be the turn of another country. This century has brought us a dictator and if we do not show the world today what is happening we are committing a crime,” he said.
THE SON is a punch in the stomach and very topical on the theme of youth discomfort, the inadequacy of adolescents and at the same time of parents, vulnerable, helpless. “Yes in this film as in life I am a fragile father. Director Zeller asked us just that: to show our vulnerability. However – says the 53-year-old Australian actor – this film has changed me as an actor, but also as a father compared to my parents. my children aged 17 and 22 “. The story, will go into the hall with 01, is taken from a play: the seventeen-year-old Nicholas (Zen McGrath) is unable to process the divorce of his parents, he can no longer live with his mother Kate (Laura Dern), he is in full existential crisis and he is happy only when he takes refuge in memories as a child. He moves in with his father Peter (Hugh Jackman), who has recently become a father with his new partner Beth (Vanessa Kirby). Peter tries to deal with Nicholas, perhaps for the first time, but the distance between him and the boy is hard to bridge. “There is a very important line in the film: ‘love is not always enough’. All the people in this film love a lot and yet it is not enough.”
Also in DREAMIN ‘WILD there is a son and a father and a family that you love. Bill Pohlad’s film about the true story of the instrumental and vocal duo Donnie and Joe Emerson, Fuori Concorso is a ‘symphony on adolescence’, a moving drama about family, the passions to follow, success and failure, the expectations of parents about their children and guilt for not being up to par. “I’ve experienced my share of failures. Broken hopes and collapsed dreams. I’ve been in so many movies that seemed like successes and then it didn’t.
These experiences of mine have served me for Dreamin ‘Wild “, says Casey Affleck, brother of Ben therefore brother-in-law of Jennifer Lopez, but above all an intense actor, Oscar winner for Manchester by the Sea in 2017.
Filmed in the real locations of the story, it brings out an incredible story, unearthed by the New York Times 10 years ago in a remote farm in Fruitland, 791 inhabitants in Washington state. When he was a teenager, in the late 70’s, Donnie Emerson played, wrote and sang his songs, he had the gift of music. His brother Joe accompanied him: his father built a hut in the woods to make it a music studio.
He had enormous faith in Donnie’s talent. The two boys recorded and self released a record, which turned out to be a failure, but their father continued to support him. And for this ‘investment’ she lost his assets, including the farm. For a strange reason that album will become 30 years later a hit on the web, a cult record with a request to get back on track.

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