(Cannes) Every day, La Presse presents films seen on the Croisette.

After 10 years of absence (her last film is Abuse of Weakness, made in 2013), Catherine Breillat is back with a feature film inspired by Queen of Hearts, a Danish film directed by May el-Toukhy in 2019 (winner at the time of an audience award at the Sundance festival). Starring Léa Drucker and Samuel Kircher (Paul’s brother, revealed in The High School Student, makes his film debut here), Last Summer chronicles how Anne, a more mature woman, goes about safeguarding her family life. after being seduced by Théo, a 17-year-old young man, son of her spouse. Reputed to be provocative, the director of Romance once again tackles a delicate subject, but this time taking a more calm approach. Eliminating from the outset the moral question raised by this affair which the young man had the initiative, the filmmaker focuses instead on the means used by Anne to try to save face when the affair comes to light. Often filming the faces of her characters in close-up with an amorous camera (magnificent work by Jeanne Lapoirie in the direction of photography), Catherine Breillat thus digs into the intimacy of her protagonists, without ever falling into shamelessness or complacency. Léa Drucker and Samuel Kircher are credible and offer magnificent performances. Last summer marks the beautiful return of a filmmaker afflicted by the disease to the point of having a lost time the desire to make cinema.

In official competition at Cannes for the first time 43 years ago (The Leap into the Void had then earned interpretation prizes for Anouk Aimée and Michel Piccoli), the Italian master Marco Bellocchio, 83, is in the running this year for the Palme d’Or for the eighth time. Classically, The Abduction echoes a real historical event, which occurred in Bologna in 1858. That year, the Pope’s soldiers broke into a Jewish family to extricate one of the children, aged 7, who, as a baby, would have been baptized in secret by a nurse. Now, the pontifical law is indisputable. A baptized child must receive a Catholic education. The kidnapping thus describes the efforts of the parents to recover their son in the face of the intransigence of Pope Pius IX, the political impact that follows from this case (the family is supported by liberal Italy and the international Jewish community) , as well as the effects of this new indoctrination on the little boy. Thanks to staging of incredible meticulousness, supported by remarkable images often resembling paintings by old masters, Marco Bellocchio offers a film of very high quality. Don’t be surprised if this most recent work by the veteran is on the charts on Saturday.