Kinds of Kindness, the big return of Yórgos Lánthimos to Cannes?  (critical)

Kinds of Kindness, the big return of Yórgos Lánthimos to Cannes? (critical)

A black comedy, in competition at the Cannes festival, which takes the form of a film in three sketches. A fun little item, but nowhere near the level of Poor Creatures.

Seven years later Killing of the sacred deer, Yórgos Lánthimos finally returns to Cannes in competition. The Greek director is unfaithful at the Venice Film Festival (from which he came away victorious last year thanks to Poor Creatures) with a sketch film – the official synopsis speaks of “ segments », it looks more chic – where the regulars Emma Stone, Willem Dafoe, Margaret Qualley (all impeccable) and the new kid Jesse Plemons (who fits in impeccably with the exercise) meet. A black comedy where the actors play a different role in each part, and which allows Lánthimos to examine, between two valves, the processes of mental manipulation in all its forms.

Without going into spoiler territory (surprise is also part of the game), we navigate in an atmosphere that is somewhere between Canine And Alps (less mean), The Fourth Dimension and a film by Quentin Dupieux. The first segment, by far the most successful, in spite of itself echoes the Second Act in his way of blurring the lines between filmmaker and despot. A form of self-criticism? Not sure, Kinds of Kindness having an unfortunate tendency to want to multiply false leads and snubs. And on the verge of self-parody in its worst moments where the director seems to laugh at shocking the bourgeois (we will still admit to having laughed a lot in a sequence on a video which will remain in the “anales”).

Way too long

Bella's frenzied optimism Poor Creatures in any case leaves room here for a misanthropy which has made Lánthimos' signature, and which he clearly has no desire to part with. There remains a more or less amusing little object which will not make a mark in its director's filmography (one wonders how it was able to land in competition, beyond the war prize for Thierry Frémaux), but which must much to the flawless investment of its actors. Impossible, however, to help but say that its duration of 2h45 pulls on the rope in an absurd way.

Kinds of Kindness will be released in cinemas in France on June 26.

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