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CULTURE | 25-05-2019 09:48

Argentina grabs attention at Cannes film festival

The Cannes film festival serves up 12 days of movie magic on the French Riviera each May. And this vintage year, Argentina was at the centre of a couple of magic moments.

SEALED WITH A KISS

Spain’s most acclaimed director Pedro Almodovar reunited with two stars from his early films, Antonio Banderas and Penelope Cruz, for his stunner of a Cannes contender, Dolor y gloria (“Pain and glory”).

Banderas plays a film director loosely based on Almodovar himself while Cruz appears as his mother in flashbacks, meaning the two A-list celebrities never appear on screen together.

In a scene many called the best kiss of this year’s festival, Banderas’ middle-aged character briefly reunites with an old flame, played by Argentine actor Leonardo Sbaraglia, for a blazingly erotic embrace.

“I’ve never dared to kiss anyone in such an intimate way,” Almodovar later told reporters.

“Two 50-year-old men kissing with so much passion and excitement on screen is not often seen.”

ABORTION PROTEST

Abortion rights activists joined by a group of female stars led by Cruz, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Spanish actress Rossi de Palma and French director Claire Denis seized the Cannes spotlight for a pro-choice demonstration.

Waving green bandanas, they turned out to support the Argentine documentary Que Sea Ley (“Let It Be Law”), which premiered at the festival. It tells the story of last year’s push to legalise abortion in Argentina, which is bitterly divided on the subject.

MARADONA NO SHOW

One of the event’s most highly anticipated red carpet moments failed to happen, after Diego Maradona, 58, declined an invitation to visit the Cannes Film Festival for the premiere of a new documentary about his life last Sunday. Amid reports the legendary former footballer had taken issue with the word “hustler” appearing on the poster promoting the film, directed by Asif Kapadia, he instead turned up in Buenos Aires for shoulder surgery. Diego also took the time to tweet his support for the ‘FernándezFernández’ ticket in October’s election.

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