Cannes film festival, Leonard Cohen and Nanni Moretti

I was standing in my kitchen this afternoon making a mango-blueberry smoothie (with ginger root) when a haunting song came on the radio.  I stopped chopping and stood still, knife poised mid-air.  That’s the effect Leonard Cohen’s music-voice-poetry has on you.  He can sometimes put you in a trance.  Leonard Cohen.  Canada’s national treasure, born and raised in Montreal. (song below – Famous Blue Raincoat)

His song came on the radio because the program I was listening to was discussing the day’s films in competition at Cannes.

Undisputed master of autofiction, the Italian filmmaker bares all in Mia Madre (My Mother), an intimist feature film, nourished by the recent ordeals in his professional and family life.  Leonard Cohen’s “Famous Blue Raincoat” is the soundtrack to the film.

Moretti’s film features John Turturro who plays a blowhard movie star with glee and relish.


Mia Madre screened in the main competition at the Cannes Film Festival on Saturday.  It’s partly comedy, partly melodrama, partly a social satire and partly a sly takedown of the movie business. And Moretti’s touch is so deft that it all comes together nicely, turning his film into a light but deeply affecting ode to family and creativity.

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