72nd Venice International Film Festival: THE DANISH GIRL

Few years ago, he introduced the verb to weep into the common use instead of the form to cry…they were the days when Les Miserables (Tom Hooper again as director) conquered the scene during the Oscar Night. And since then, Mr Eddie Redmayne has never ceased to make us weep, to excite us with his masterful interpretations.

In Venice there are those who already call for another Oscar, after the one he won last year for the magnificent interpretation of Stephen Hawking…but, despite his marvellous job, in The Danish Girl, I think the real star is Alicia Vikander.

The Danish Girl tells the story of Gerda Wegener, Alicia Vikander precisely, portraitist of the ‘20s married with a teacher, the landscapist Einar (Eddie Redmayne). The real story (or we can say stories) begins when Gerda asks her husband to stand in for a female model. Einar develops an attraction for a female physical appearance and begins leaving as a woman named Lili and becomes the first ever recipient of male to female sex reassignment surgery.

I said stories because I think this movie has two main narrative paths: one is Einar’s story and one, for me the strongest one, is the love story…not only in the simple way husband and wife but in many different shades. The Danish Girl tells about the love triangle between Einar/Lili, Gerda and her friend Hans (the extraordinary Matthias Schoenaerts) and about the most deep and difficult form of love: the one as a journey towards themselves despite everything and everyone. But this movie teach also how to love someone even when his desires can’t be compatible with our own.

The cast is just incredible: Alicia Vikander, who last year stole our heart as Vera Brittain in Testament of Youth (here the review), continues her fast and well deserved rise. We already said a lot about Eddie Redmayne who as Lili is simply perfection. British audience already know Ben Wishaw fantastic acting skills as well as Matthias Schoenaerts ones, who last year enchanted us in Suite Francaise (here the review), The Loft, A Little Chaos and Far from the Madding Crowd.

The Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters (Schoenaerts precisely) will be on the Lido screens also tomorrow, Sunday, September 6, in A Bigger Splash (also at the BFI LFF next month) alongside Tilda Swinton, Ralph Fiennes and Dakota Johnson.


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