Cannes 2023: Jeanne du Barry | Festivals & Awards

The film stars and was directed by Maïwenn, a Cannes favourite who goes solely by her first title. Maïwenn gained the jury prize for “Polisse” in 2011, returned to competitors with “My King” in 2015, and had a ceremonial official choice, “DNA,” introduced for the 2020 pageant after that version had been canceled. “Jeanne du Barry” retells the oft-told story of the title character, Louis XV’s favourite mistress, who had the impudence to thumb her nostril on the formalities of Versailles but additionally managed to usher in some vaguely forward-looking reforms, at the least on this movie’s telling. When the French Revolution got here round, she misplaced her head to the guillotine. However that element is barely relayed in passing on the finish, as a result of Louis was useless by then, and the guts of the film is their relationship.

It isn’t, for essentially the most half, a beating coronary heart. Essentially the most newsworthy facet of “Jeanne du Barry” is that it incorporates Johnny Depp’s first new main function since his defamation lawsuit towards Amber Heard. However as Louis XV, he barely makes an impression. Depp is basically relegated to trying unhappy at having to stay like royalty. Sometimes, he lets slip a glimmer of wry amusement, as when the carefree Jeanne tells him that he seems to be similar to the six-franc coin he is minted on. It is nearly a reduction when the king develops smallpox, as a result of at the least it provides some expression to Depp’s face. As motion pictures concerning the demises of French monarchs go, you’re much better off with Albert Serra’s “The Loss of life of Louis XIV” from 2016.

However for a lot of the setup, Depp is not even onscreen. “Jeanne du Barry” is Maïwenn’s showcase for herself, and he or she has merely miscalculated her capacity to be partaking on this function. Described on this model because the illegitimate daughter of a monk and a cook dinner, Jeanne has, as she explains at one level, been pressured to decide on between a life like her mom’s or a lifetime of harlotry. “I choose harlotry,” she says, in a line that will or could not fall in need of interval verisimilitude. After being expelled from a convent—she reads an excessive amount of—Jeanne makes a reputation for herself as a courtesan earlier than assembly and smiling extensively at Louis, who summons her for a regal tumble that she declines to decorate fancily for.