Cannes 2019, standing ovation for "Rocketman" and the jʼaccuse of Ken Loach: "Society goes towards the abyss"
Second evening full of emotions on the Croisette. Ten minutes of applause and standing ovation for the biopic musical (out of competition) on the life of Elton John, the expected "Rocketman" with Taron Egerton. And the j'accuse to the ruined society, to a social disintegration that now seems one step away from the abyss, by Ken Loach, who presented "Sorry we missed you".
The 82-year-old English author, twice the Palme d'Or, has for years talked about the failures of capitalism, privatizations and the lost welfare, giving the public emotions and anxieties, merciless portraits, completely distorted mirrors of our times. And it does so also in the film in competition in Cannes, where it is narrated the descent into hell today, of a working class reduced to slavery in the turbocapitalist illusion. A descent that does not concern migrants who arrive in Europe for a better life, but the citizens themselves, the British and Newcastle is no different from Lyon or Turin.
The usual Loach? Partly yes, he is the last Communist Loach to directing and the great Paul Laverty to the script, but each story has its own key in the register of that realism that makes its actors feel naturally close to the poor Christs we have become.
"Sorry we missed you" tells a story like many of those who found themselves dealing with the financial crisis of 2008. Ricky tries to redeem himself with a new van and a job as a self-employed driver, but life is not easy, nor for him or for his wife Abby, who works as a caregiver. Played by two or almost new actors, the film, in full Loach style, is a cross-section on 'the sunken' and the distortions of capitalist society.
"There is an explosion of poverty in Britain, austerity is a political choice", explains Loach: "Cinema cannot do much if it does not raise awareness. We must know that we have the power to vote, to strike and the claim of decent rights against the logic imposed by capitalism, to overthrow the status quo we must be convinced of this, unfortunately the left has not had this force. The consequence is before our eyes: social disintegration and rise of the right everywhere " , And he concludes. "There is a very dangerous situation, there is so much anger at this inequality and the gap between the very rich and the poor that we take it out to vent it with migrants, different and with the most vulnerable".
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