(Cannes) Every day, La Presse presents films seen on the Croisette.
Much like Michael Haneke did with The White Ribbon, Jonathan Glazer sets out to explore the nature of evil in a seemingly banal setting in his new film. Inspired by a book of the same name by the writer Martin Amis recounting the family life of a Nazi commander living in a house adjoining the Auschwitz camp, the British filmmaker, who is offering his first feature film since the disturbing Under the Skin, signs a chilling work as possible.
By showing the living environment of Major Rudolf Höss (Christian Friedel), who leads his family life with his wife (Sandra Hüller) in a completely “normal” way in a clean house while the nearby chimneys belch smoke gas chambers, Glazer evokes the banality of horror from the point of view of the Nazis.
Thanks to anxiety-provoking musical motifs, a camera that is always at a distance, and a soundtrack that evokes everything without showing anything, The Zone of Interest, shot entirely in German, is so far the most impactful film we have. seen in this early competition.
In official competition for the seventh time, already winner of several prizes on the Croisette (including the Palme d’or in 2014 thanks to Winter Sleep), Nuri Bilge Ceylan is back with, once again, a (long) film – absolutely fascinating – essentially based on conversations between characters.
Faithful to his part of the country, Eastern Anatolia, the leader of Turkish cinema this time offers a story built around a teacher, brilliantly played by Deniz Celiloğlu, who is chomping at the bit in a school in his region hoping to be transferred to Istanbul. Falsely accused of inappropriate gestures and words by one of his students, the man is led to reassess his life. And, above all, to discuss it. Admirers of Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s cinema will rediscover this very personal way of capturing the beauty of the region’s landscapes, but they will especially appreciate the intellectual exercise to which the filmmaker invites us, to the point of making it hard to believe in its duration of 3:17. everything is so easy.
Apart from a slightly odd little digression in which we are unexpectedly transported to a movie studio (why?), The Dry Herbs displays the mastery of a filmmaker in full possession of his means. Sphère Films holds the exploitation rights for this film in Quebec, the release date of which has not yet been determined.