The main event of the fifth day at Message to Man is the Russian premiere of Lux Æterna by the festival provocateur Gaspar Noé (Enter the Void, Climax), starring two French divas, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Béatrice Dalle, in the lead roles. In addition, the program includes: a portrait of the actress Alisa Freindlich followed by a meeting with director Denis Klebleyev; two installments of the feature films competition; the Panorama.doc programme (Assassins, The Kingmaker, Sunless Shadows); the Superreal Cinema section (The Salt of Tears, Beginning) and numerous reruns.
“BELLA”, directed by Thelyia Petraki (2020)
The first installment of the International Competition features the Russian premiere of Bella, one of the year’s best short films by the Greek directress Thelyia Petraki. Film critic Mikhail Zakharov notes: “Petraki masterly combines archive footage with a fictional story, creating a portrait of a middle-aged Greek woman, separated from her diplomat husband. She lives in Athens in the late 1980s, single-handedly raising two children and sending him home videos on tapes; he works in the Soviet Union and is growing increasingly detached from her. A personal story placed in the context of major geopolitical changes gradually attains a truly global scale.” Online Q&A with Petraki and other filmmakers will take place after the screening.
“LUX ÆTERNA”, directed by Gaspar Noé (2020)
In the evening, the Russian premiere of the new film Lux Æterna by the French provocateur Gaspar Noé will take place in the main room of Aurora cinema. Originally conceived as an advertising film for the Yves Saint Laurent fashion house, it eventually became a hallucinatory comedy about the filmmaking process with screen divas Béatrice Dalle (Betty Blue, Trouble Every Day) and Charlotte Gainsbourg (Antichrist, Nymphomaniac).
“ALISA: EXCITEMENT”, directed by Denis Klebleyev (2020)
Dom Kino hosts a special screening of the documentary portrait of 85-year-old Alisa Freundlich. Ksenia Rozhdestvenskaya comments on the film Alisa: Excitement: “Alisa Brunovna is rehearsing the lead role in Ivan Vyrypaev’s play Excitement: she reads the play, listens to the director’s notes, talks through the nuances with him, chooses accessories, worries that her character’s monologues are way too long. She also goes to the dacha, holds her great-grandson for the first time, recalls his own childhood. And it feels like she is always on stage — even when she is only getting ready to step on it.” Q&A with director Denis Klebleyev will be held after the screening.
“ASSASSINS”, directed by Ryan White (2020)
Panorama.doc programme notably includes Assassins by Emmy-nominated Ryan White’s (a detective documentary about how two women convinced that they are participating in a comedy show kill the brother of the North Korean dictator in broad daylight) and The Kingmaker about the widow of another famous dictator, Imelda Marcos, who, after the death of her husband Ferdinand, rewrites the history of the Philippines. Director of The Kingmaker, Lauren Greenfield, will do an online Q&A with the audience.
“THE SALT OF TEARS”, directed by Philippe Garrel (2020)
Superreal Cinema programme features a black-and-white aesthetic melodrama about the love quadrangle The Salt of Tears by the French classic Philippe Garrel and the second screening of Georgian Déa Kulumbegashvili’s Beginning, a debut film about a sectarian in search of freedom, which won the Golden Shell in San Sebastián.
“FELLINI OF THE SPIRITS”, dircted by Anselma Dall’Olio (2020)
In the evening, as part of the “Gender Without Borders” retrospective, which is dedicated to 100th anniversary of the birth of Federico Fellini, a documentary Fellini of the Spirits directed by Anselma Dall’Olio will be screened in the main room of Aurora cinema. A dedication to the master, the film explores the role of the metaphysical and the supernatural in his life.