Home Entertainment «Elvis», the King of Rock and Roll protagonist in the room

«Elvis», the King of Rock and Roll protagonist in the room

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«Elvis», the King of Rock and Roll protagonist in the room

One of the most anticipated biopics of the year is the most important film of the week: “Elvis” by Baz Luhrmann arrives in our cinemas following its out-of-competition presentation at the Cannes Film Festival.
After directing feature films such as “Romeo + Juliet”, “Moulin Rouge” and “The Great Gatsby”, the Australian director relies on one of the most important names on the music scene of every era and has signed an undoubtedly ambitious film, in which he is particular relevance is the relationship between Elvis and his manager, protagonists of a long-lasting artistic partnership. The film focuses precisely on this complex relationship, from the growth of the first rock star in history to the achievement of world fame. All while America is experiencing a socio-cultural upheaval, which will lead to great changes.

Classic narration of an incredible ascent followed by bad falls, in “Elvis” one feels very much the presence behind the camera of Luhrmann, whose superabundant and stunning style shines through above all in a decidedly brilliant first part, where the staging succeeds dragging the viewer into Elvis’s spectacular performances. Over the minutes, however, the story becomes more conventional and the victim of too many stereotypes about how to manage a biographical film, losing some of its initial momentum.

“Elvis” and the other films of the weekend

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An enjoyable but fluctuating film

Playing with the temporality of the story, the film adopts an interesting point of view, relying on the memories of Colonel Parker to reconstruct the fundamental stages of Elvis’s musical career. Conclusion: The performance is fluctuating, also due to a fascinating but in the long run tiring audiovisual bombardment, which tries to hide some limitations of a script that is not always engaging. At the same time, however, it should be highlighted that it was not at all easy to do better with such a complex narrative base and the result is still enjoyable overall, thanks also to the excellent performance of the protagonist Austin Butler: the young American actor is committed a lot, while less intense is Tom Hanks in the role of the manager.

California Beats

Among the novelties of the weekend there is also “California Beats”, a film directed by Nabil Ayouch, a French director of Moroccan origins. The protagonist is Anas, a former rapper, who finds a new job in a cultural center where he will help his students to get rid of social conventions through dance and hip hop culture. It is a film that plays everything on the “California Beats” energy, a product whose main value is the good performance of the many young actors on stage, for the most part non-professionals, who instill credibility of the whole story. It is a pity, however, that the narration knows too much about it and that, paradoxically, the film often struggles to find the right rhythm to be able to entertain as it should. Some interesting initial ideas soon give way to a too conventional narrative, despite the effective characterization of all the characters on stage. Presented in competition at the Cannes Film Festival 2021, “California Beats” is thus a film suitable almost exclusively for fans of musical genres mentioned above and ends up offering fewer reflections (on the theme of integration, for example) than those that such a subject could have given the viewer.

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