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June 23, 2021

Russian ‘Faust’ wins Golden Lion at Venice Film Festival

Michael Fassbender takes Best Actor, Chinese surprise film ‘People Mountain People Sea’ wins Director.

Despite an English-language-heavy competition line-up, international films won the bulk of the awards at the Venice Film Festival. Aleksandr Sokurov‘s “Faust,” a retelling of Goethe’s tragedy, and the final part of a four-part series about men of power, following pictures focusing on Hitler (”Moloch”), Lenin (”Taurus”) and Emperor Hirohito (”The Sun”), was awarded the Golden Lion by the jury led by Darren Aronofsky.

Surprise film “People Mountain People Sea,” won the Silver Lion for director Cai Shangjun, while two other Asian entries took top acting prizes; Yeanie Tip, in her first role in years, won the Coppa Volpi for Best Actress for “A Simple Life,” while Shota Sometani and Fumi Nikaido shared Best Young Actor for Sion Sono‘s tough-watch post-tsunami drama “Himizu.”
Michael Fassbender deservedly took the Coppa Volpi for Best Actor for his role in “Shame”. Two of our favorites of the festival, Andrea Arnold‘s “Wuthering Heights” and Yorgos Lanthimos’ “Alps”, also took prizes, the former for Robbie Ryan‘s exceptional cinematography, the latter for Lanthimos’ screenplay.

Finally, Italian immigration drama “Terrafirma” won the Special Jury Prize. “Là-Bas” won the critic’s week section. Shinya Tsukamoto‘s “Kotoko” won top prize in the Orrizonti sidebar and “Shame” took the FIPRESCI award.

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