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Toni Erdmann; The Salesman; Jackie; Who’s Gonna Love Me Now? and more

 

Maren Ade’s parent-child comedy is a triumph, while Asghar Farhadi’s domestic suspense film doesn’t match his best

I am writing this week’s column in the balmy rosé-and-Nurofen glow of the Cannes film festival, where Pedro Almodóvar’s jury is about to dish out its prizes. If things go as they usually do, critics will feel alternately vindicated and perplexed by the winners, and a masterpiece or two will go entirely ignored and be just fine anyway – just ask Toni Erdmann (Soda, 15). This time last year, Maren Ade’s ingenious, elastic twist on the parent-child comedy earned the most ecstatic reviews of the festival, while George Miller and his jurors gave it nada.

Trust the critics on this one. Running from dizzily absurd farce to laceratingly honest heartbreak across nearly three exhilarating hours, this story of a tightly wound businesswoman torn between severing and mending relations with her lonely, singularly eccentric father is wholly original in shape and tone. Yet the feelings it wrenches from its characters are achingly recognisable. Peter Simonischek and Sandra Hüller are interdependently extraordinary. The latter (pictured right), among other achievements, reaches an all-time summit in onscreen karaoke with an edge-of-the-abyss Whitney Houston number. “The greatest love of all is easy to achieve,” she belts; Ade’s lovely, weird, wise film knows otherwise.

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Source: Guardian

By Max Schindler