During the health crisis and the closing of cinemas, the editorial staff Figaro offers you every Wednesday a selection of new products available on streaming platforms or on VOD.
Rise and fall of Judy
1968, Judy Garland is a shadow of herself. Alcoholic, insomniac, addicted to pills, the ex-teenage star of the 1940s doesn’t even have enough to pay for a hotel room for her children who perform with her. When an English manager offers her a series of concerts in London, the cornered actress accepts, even if her voice falters. The reception of the British capital is triumphant, enough to spark yet another rebirth, an ultimate love (Finn Wittrock, gigolo at will). But Judy’s demons are never far away. From the play End Of The Rainbow by Peter Quilter, Rupert Goold’s film interweaves Renée Zellweger’s vocal prowess with moments of frenzy and distress. Flashbacks showing how the studios ravaged Garland’s psyche and body. Renée Zellweger fades in the guise of the star without ever disappearing completely, transforming the story into a timeless and disturbing Hollywood fable. The camera, this unsatisfied ogre.
Available on MyCanal
There Will Be Blood, black gold between the fingers
At the dawn of the twentieth century, the pioneer Daniel Plainview already owns and operates a few oil wells, when he decides to buy the land full of black gold around a small Californian town and settles there with his son. With progress, it also introduces violence and corruption in this arid region where nothing grows. The enlightened and charismatic priest Eli Sunday (brilliantly embodied by Paul Dano), is the only one to stand up to him fiercely. This powerful epic of the conquest of the West and its riches is also a titanic encounter and a fight to the death between Good and Evil, faith and cynicism, love and ambition. There Will Be Blood is undoubtedly an event in the history of American cinema. The first role (Daniel Day Lewis), the director (Paul Thomas Anderson) and the soundtrack were legitimately awarded (Oscar, Berlin Festival, etc.). A quarter of an hour as a bonus shows the work carried out on period documents. VD
Available on Arte
In Official Secrets, Keira Knightley plays spy (and it works)
This feature film is an adaptation of a true story. And the subject of the novel The spy who tried to stop a war: Katherine Gun and the secret plot to sanction the invasion of Iraq, signed Marcia and Thomas Mitchell. During the vote for the invasion of Iraq in 2003 by the UN Security Council, a young employee of the United Kingdom’s intelligence services forwards documents to the press proving the spying of diplomats by the United States- United and the collusion between the two Anglo-Saxon countries. Sued by the British government, Katherine Gun is today recognized as one of the first whistleblowers in the modern world. Released in 2019, the film did not make much noise. Yet the correctness of Keira Knightley, in the lead role, far from her sultry, Victorian characters – think The Duchess – is surprising.
Available on MyCanal
You can see
Flora and Ulysses by Lena Khan
Even though theaters are closed, Disney spoils its younger viewers with this comedy where a greedy squirrel with prodigious physical strength helps Flora overcome her parents’ separation and depression (Ben Schwartz and Alyson Hannigan from How I Met Your Mother). Taken from Kate DiCamillo’s illustrated book, the adaptation shows that there is always a way to have fun with the superhero genre, even in the animal kingdom. Ulysses looks a bit like Chris Pratt in Guardian of The Galaxy. This invitation to abandon cynicism is not always a very light metaphor (especially in its last act). But this film appeals to our childish hearts and our wonder at this resourceful flying rodent. Filmmaker Lena Khan also uses a burlesque situational comedy Tom and Jerry. Ulysses is often chased by a town cleaner. “I wanted a film that speaks to everyone, about the economic difficulties of parents, of those who are losing ground. Children are always aware of this regardless of their age ”, points out the director. “In this time of pandemic, many people no longer see the beauty of the world. May Ulysses make them want to fight again ”, notes the one who studied many squirrel videos before reproducing her own in 3D. She apologizes in advance to the parents who will now face requests to adopt squirrels.
Available on Disney +
Back to the Future, Zemeckis’ masterpiece
Co-written by the brilliant Robert Zemeckis and his pal Bob Gale, Marty McFly and Doc Brown’s Time Travel is back on Netflix. “The idea is dazzling. A pretext for comedy, it is also for the reflection of philosophers. With Back to the Future, you have the opportunity to laugh frankly or to meditate deeply. There is here a kind of tale that Diderot could have invented, because it mingles an absolute logic and an imagination which snorts between irony and the fantastic. All propelled by a cheerful energy that ignores downtime ”, wrote the late Claude Baignères in the columns of Figaro in 1985. It must be said that upon its release, the first part of the saga had captivated critics and the public. The feature film with an exemplary script, or the quintessence of “set-up, pay-off”, certainly suffers today from some slightly “old-fashioned” special effects, but remains a first-rate entertainment with refreshing innocence, justifying without hardly its status as a “cult film”.