“‘I will tell you immediately that 70 years is not an arriving point but a starting point,’ insists Locarno’s long-serving president Marco Solari of the festival’s platinum year.” So begins Geoffrey Macnab’s overview of this year’s edition, opening today and running through August 12. Macnab notes that “the festival’s gaze remains firmly on the future, as evidenced by a small but significant change to the event’s name—it is now Locarno Festival, rather than Locarno Film Festival. Of course, film is still at the heart of the event, with many titles still being projected in 35 mm, but the programmers are now looking beyond cinema. As Solari puts it, ‘the festival is more than a seat and a screen. It is an event.’”
For the Notebook, Gustavo Beck talks with artistic director Carlo Chatrian, “who has been running Locarno for five years now.” Chatrian talks about why this year’s retrospective is dedicated to the work of Jacques Tourneur and about the Pardo d’onore awards for lifetime achievement being presented to Jean-Marie Straub, “the most influential director in modern cinema,” and Todd Haynes. Also: “What impressed me at Locarno when I attended in the past as a film critic was that I was able to watch the Farrelly brothers at the Piazza Grande and at the same time to discover the diaries of Jonas Mekas. That is really what appeals to me as programmer, as a viewer and now as a festival director, so I try to be faithful to this kind of tradition.”
Focusing primarily on industry-related initiatives, Muriel Del Don talks with vice artistic director Nadia Dresti for Cineuropa.
Deutsche Welle naturally emphasizes the German titles in the program, but also notes that Jeanne Moreau, who passed away this week, “presented her films in Locarno many times and will be remembered at this year's festival.”
At the site for the festival itself, Lorenzo Buccella interviews Olivier Assayas, president of the Concorso internazionale Jury, Alessandro De Bon previews the Locarno70 program of twelve films that made a splash in previous editions, and Rinaldo Censi has a suggestion for taking in the mammoth Tourneur retrospective. The image above, by the way, is Virginia Huston and Robert Mitchum in Tourneur’s Out of the Past (1947).
This entry will serve as an index to roundups on individual films as they take shape and, towards the end of the festival, I’ll be adding notes here on some of the more interesting films that haven’t by that point scared up enough reviews to warrant full entries of their own.
Update, 8/3: IndieWire’s Eric Kohn takes “a look at some of the most promising films in this year’s lineup.”
Updates, 8/8: “Estonian film Portugal by Lauri Lagle is the big winner at the seventh edition of First Look, one of Locarno Festival’s Industry Days most well established initiatives, focusing on cinema from a different region each year,” and Vassilis Economou has the full list of winners at Cineuropa.
Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani’s Let the Corpses Tan
Noémie Lvovsky’s Tomorrow and Thereafter
Serge Bozon’s Mrs. Hyde
Denis Côte’s A Skin So Soft
Annemarie Jacir’s Duty
Hlynur Pálmason’s Winter Brothers
Raúl Ruiz’s The Wandering Soap Opera
Jan Speckenbach’s Freedom
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