The Venice Film Festival wraps today after putting on a show against the odds. Despite lacking in studio fare, there was no shortage of well-received movies. Was there a Sundance-style bounce, with critics giddy just to be on the Lido after months of lockdown? Perhaps. But this was also a solid roster of independent movies. While there was no Joker juggernaut, there was at least one Roma rave. We’ve done a wide sweep of the English-language reviews and here’s our run-down of the best-received world premieres.
Standing out in the pack for its touted Academy Awards potential was Chloe Zhao’s anticipated drama Nomadland, starring Frances McDormand as a woman who embarks on a journey through the American West. The Searchlight Pictures movie, which debuted last night, was expected to be impress given its simultaneous berths in Venice and Toronto, and it didn’t disappoint. It’s just a shame there weren’t more people at the festivals to see it.
Among the most popular films of this edition was Roger Michell’s UK dramedy The Duke, starring Helen Mirren and Jim Broadbent, the latter as a 60-year-old taxi driver who steals a Goya portrait. The film garnered multiple five star write-ups.
Actress Regina King made her feature directorial debut in Venice with praised drama One Night In Miami, which charts a night when icons Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Sam Cooke and Jim Brown gather to discuss their roles in the civil rights movement. The drama received hardy applause on site. King also made history as the first African American female director with a film at the festival.
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