#CANNES22: “FINAL CUT” REVIEW
By Amanda Gilmore for Mr. Will Wong
Final Cut is a Zombie Horror-Comedy and a love letter to the challenges of Filmmaking.
It follows Remi (Romain Duris) a struggling Director who has only scratched the surface of Filmmaking. When he’s approached to make a French remake of a beloved classic Japanese Zombie flick, he takes the opportunity. Unbeknownst to Remi, he’s just accepted this most stressful directing gig. Not only does he need to shoot it in one take, as it will be viewed live on a new streaming platform, but he’s also dealing with jaded technicians and uninvolved actors. However, things get complicated when filming is disrupted by the real living dead. In front of the camera, everything looks relatively normal. But behind it, the crew is in chaos attempting to save the Film.
Writer-Director Michel Hazanavicius (Academy Award-winning The Artist) on one level brings us a new Zombie Horror-Comedy, yet transcends the limited audience of that genre by broadening it’s scope to explore the love and struggle of Filmmaking. It is apparent right away that Remi has a real passion for Filmmaking right at the start. This is a do-or-die situation for him and for anyone is all-in about their career, it’s easy to sympathize and relate. Duris is outstanding. His energy is unparalleled and he excels in this comedic performance. His natural charisma makes the audience cheer for him even if he’s ultimately making one of the worst Zombie films ever.
The Supporting Cast give hilarious performances. Bérénice Bejo plays Nadia, an Actress who takes her roles too seriously. She delivers some of the most outrageous one-liners with unwavering conviction, making for scene-stealing moments. Finnegan Oldfield plays Raphaël, an Actor who believes he’s better than he actually is. And rounding-out the Principal Cast is the brilliant Matilda Anna Ingrid Lutz. She might have the most challenging role as her character is a bad Actress. Her strong comedic timing makes her achieve this and her performance is a testament to how very talented she is.
Final Cut has an impactful opening and first act that leaves ample mystery. We are left wondering what is going on. Hazanavicius uses this as a device to grab a hold of us. In the middle, we are given some answers. Even though it’s in this section that the Film lags, Hazanavicius’ Script gives film references that true Cinephiles will get. In the final 30 minutes, we are given all the answers to our questions. The situations we watch this Cast and Crew get into are hysterical.
Fans of the original Japanese Cult Classic One Cut of the Dead, will get a reference that is highlighted at the midway mark. In this scene, Remi sits studying the original Japanese Film he is supposed to remake. Hazanavicius uses the original One Cut of The Dead that Final Cut is based on, making for a fun, meta homage to the cult classic.
Final Cut screens at Cannes ’22:
Tue, May 17 at 7PM at GRAND THÉÂTRE LUMIÈRE
Tue, May 17 at 11:30PM at GRAND THÉÂTRE LUMIÈRE
Wed, May 18 at 11AM at GRAND THÉÂTRE LUMIÈRE
Wed, May 18 at 2PM at SALLE AGNÈS VARDA
Thu, May 19 at 11:30AM at LICORNE
Thu, May 19 at 4PM at CINEUM IMAX
Fri, May 27 at 9:40PM at ARCADES 1