An extraordinary cinematographic experience, a masterpiece or even a complete failure, so many qualifications intended for the opening film of the 74th Cannes Film Festival. Leos Carax signs his return and capsizes the cinemas.
Almost ten years after its masterpiece – yet a commercial failure when it was released – what Holy Motors (2012), the most wacky French filmmaker of this generation is making his big comeback. ANNETTE is an abundant and fascinating work that will be hated as much as it will be loved. Filmed in France, Belgium and Germany, the action takes place surprisingly in Los Angeles nowadays. Henry is a stand-up comedian with a fierce humor. Ann, an internationally renowned singer. Together, under the spotlight, they form a happy and glamorous couple. The birth of their first child, Annette, a mysterious girl with an exceptional destiny, will turn their lives upside down.
Cursed film, the cast initially announced was talking about Michelle williams then Rihanna. Since its genesis, Carax’s film had enough to shake the web and the discussions of moviegoers. Imagined by The Sparks, ANNETTE mixes musical comedy, chaotic opera and physical performance. When you enter the Caraxien universe, you should expect to be dazzled by a salamander wading through a hat, a night light for children or even a sung cunnilingus. Yes, even the sex is metamorphosed in this extreme filmmaker. Leos Carax thus manages to open a new door to the musical genre, an experience more than a simple film. Based on a simple frame that we could basically compare to that ofA Star Is Born (2018, ANNETTE tackles with kitsch and ingenuity the need for recognition among celebrities.
Ladies and gentlemen ! We now ask for your full attention. If you want to sing, laugh, clap, cry, yawn, boo or fart, please do it in your head, only in your head. You are now asked to remain silent and hold your breath until the end of the show. Breathing will not be tolerated during the show. So please take a deep, final breath now.
So may we start?
Annette (2021) by Léos Carax
If the feature film of more than two hours will certainly haunt viewers, the setbacks experienced by the cast are sure to raise questions in the era of time. We are thinking in particular of the #MeToo movement. Perfectly styled by Caroline Champetier, the new project from the creator of Mr. shit wants to be innovative and at the same time, anchored in reality. A false reality.
ANNETTE also represents an immersive and unique playground for its cast. Adam driver captivates, frightens and shines with its majestic interpretation. After some musical notes at Noah Baumbach in Marriage story (2019), the American actor proves his talents in comedy but also in singing. Her body and her voice twirl to the rhythm of the insane soundtrack of Sparks. Marion Cotillard, for her part, once again demonstrates her versatility and daring in this role which fits her like a glove. Notice to the haters and mockers, the “kid Marion” as Delon would say, takes her revenge and delivers more than 10 theatrical deaths in a few seconds. Simon helberg, known by fans of The Big Bang Theory, shines brightly during a sequence repeatedly breaking the fourth wall so adored by Carax. Fetishist of cameos, the filmmaker declares his love for the 7th art with an opening sequence destined to become cult.
Because you have to keep the surprise intact at the first viewing, no need to talk about Baby Annette, or the evolution of the character of Henry and Ann. All we can advise you is to make yourself comfortable, to open your eyes and above all not to expect anything. Let yourself be carried away by this unique, imposing and theatrical work.
• Original title : Annette
• Realization : Leos Carax
• Scenario: Ron Mael, Russell Mael
• Main actors : Adam Driver, Marion Cotillard, Simon Helberg
• Release date : July 7, 2021
• Duration : 2h20min