No stars Mexican actor Gael García Bernal, who played the leading role in “The Motorcycle Diaries,” and tells the story of an advertising executive’s innovative campaign to defeat Pinochet in Chile’s 1988 referendum.
The highly anticipated final film of Raúl Ruiz will premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival Directors’ Fortnight, alongside the latest in a politically charged trilogy by fellow Chilean director, Pablo Larraín.
The screening of Ruiz’ La Noche de Enfrente will be a bittersweet moment for festival goers, coming just over six months after the director’s death in the French capital – a country in which he was associated for many years after being exiled during the dictatorship of Gen. Augusto Pinochet.
“I think Raúl Ruiz knew his end was near when he was making this film. It’s a very intimate film, but made with his particular humor, his vision of the world,” the festival sidebar’s new artistic director, Edouard Waintrop, told The Hollywood Reporter.
In trademark Ruiz-style, the film weaves together three separate stories, across different eras and continents. All three narratives are derived from the stories of Chilean author Hernán del Solar, who won the Chilean National Prize for Literature in 1968 and tutored Ruiz in theater when the director was 19.
“There’s a lot of surrealism. He talks about childhood, death and Chile,” Waintrop said, “he didn’t want it to be sad.”
La Noche de Enfrente marked Ruiz’s return to Chile, and the filmmaker was adding the final touches when he passed away.
Meanwhile, at 35, Pablo Larraín, represents a different generation of Chileans who were born after the coup.
His latest film, No – described by Waintrop as a “political film and a human adventure,” – marks the final in a trilogy exploring the period of the dictatorship that unfolded during his childhood.
The Cannes screening comes just weeks after the U.S. release of the second of those films, Post Mortem. The first of the trilogy, the award winning Tony Manero, was released in 2008.