Venice 78. Ben Affleck and Matt Damon in ‘The last duel’: “A feminist history of the Middle Ages”

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“Yes, I consider myself a feminist.” Ben Affleck he is at the Venice Film Festival with his old friend Matt Damon with whom he returns to write a film 23 years after the Oscar for Will Hunting – Rebel genius. The last duel is a historical film set in 14th century France where Jean de Carrouges (Damon) and Jacques Le Gris (Adam Driver), two former friends, comrades in battles, and now enemies for rivalry of power and possessions, find themselves facing each other for the honor of a woman. The story, however, is far from that world of ladies and knights of picaresque literature, here at the center of everything there is a woman who has chosen not to keep silent about a rape, she is Lady Marguerite (Jodie Comer) wife of Carrouges. Inspired by a true story, the real last duel authorized by the King in medieval France, the film signed by Ridley Scott is a story in three acts. In the first the story is told by de Carrouges, then by Le Gris finally by Lady Marguerite ready to risk her own life because if her husband had not defeated her rival she would have been accused of perjury and burned alive. Affleck and Damon enlisted the help of the screenwriter to write the film Nicole Holofcener.

Venice 78 – ‘The last duel’, Driver, Affleck and Damon in 14th century France


On the penultimate day of the Festival, Hollywood stars return and the red carpet is full of stars including Jennifer Lopez who also accompanies Ben Affleck to the Mostra after the summer spent together in Italy. “I think this film is really interesting for the character of the female protagonist – continued Affleck at the press conference – Reading the book I thought it was a strong story in terms of classic narration. A woman who has suffered an attack and seeks justice, a true story, extraordinary and extremely modern. It could certainly create empathy and compassion in the audience and it was interesting to ask ourselves not only what our point of view is but also that of others. the cultural antecedents. Women for centuries and in some countries still today have been seen as the property of men and not human beings “. In fact, in the story it is clear that the husband chooses to stand beside his wife in this battle not to obtain justice for her but to demand it for him, he is the victim of the offense.

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Damon explained how the trio of writers worked on the text based on the novel The last duel: A true story of trial by combat in medieval by Eric Jager. “Ben and I wrote the first two acts, while Nicole dealt with the story told from Marguerite’s point of view, although she also intervened in ours. A totally different process than when we were writing at twenty in the 1990s. , when we understood the characters but not the structure, we were not able to decline the characters in different scenarios and then put them together for a film. Then we wrote thousands of pages never used, we were both convinced that what we did was inefficient. “

Jodie Comer, 28 years old protagonist of the series Killing Eve, she said that “as an actress she appreciated being able to give Marguerite’s point of view, in the end we know that there is not a single truth. I wanted this woman to be real and that it was clear how much this dramatic experience had marked her, but not was defined by it “. Speaking of #Metoo, the screenwriter said: “Of course, we were all aware of the movement and how similar this Marguerite experience was to those of so many women even today, but the last thing we wanted was to put up some sort of sign to say “Look how relevant she is today.” People will understand that, without having to stress it. We worked on her as a human being and what she’s been through and took great care to make sure her version was the true story. ” Ridley Scott who will receive the Cartier Glory to the Filmaker Award at the Venice Film Festival and that has coming too The house of Gucci with Lady Gaga and Adam Driver (absent at the Lido), he prides himself on “changing genre often, I would miss the western and the musical, but if I talk about eras my passion is right in the 14th century, I myself have lived in a house since 1982 of 1360 in Surrey “.

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