Jane Campion’s film is on Netflix: the opportunity to change your mind about her cinema

The first woman to win the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival, Jane Campion is a major (although very discreet) director of our time. On the occasion of the release of his new film on Netflix, this is why you should (re) see all of his filmo.

There are titles whose simple evocation inspires boredom.

Experiment by asking in the evening: “Have you seen Top of The Lake by Jane Campion?” And you’ll find people rolling their neurasthenic eyes.

Jane Campion, not that boring

Yes, unfortunately, Jane Campion is one of that caliber of directors who can cause immediate sleep just by naming them, like Terrence Malick.

When we think of them, we often think of the boring VHS like no other that our parents watched on Sunday evenings, based on extended shots on snails and other haunting music against the backdrop of a hazy beach.

We ourselves got pissed off more than once in front of Jane Campion’s first films when we were kids. And then, as an adult, we have seen everything again and it is clear that we have not yawned once, quite the contrary.

On the occasion of the release of his new film on Netflix, the platform has also uploaded his other creations, and that’s why you should (re) see them.

Jane Campion, the first director to win the Palme d’Or

Does the number 82 mean anything to you?

Know that it is the number of female directors (listed in 2018, others are now to be added) who have climbed the steps since the creation of the festival from Cannes. Vs 1688 men.

Figure which, in 2018, gave rise to the march of 82 women who came to demand more visibility for their work in the cinema, including Aïssa Maïga, Marion Cotillard or even Cate Blanchett and Agnès Varda.

And out of these 82 women, at the time, there was only one to have won the Palme d’Or, namely the supreme award of the festival. And her name is Jane Campion (she is also the only personality to hold both the Palme d’Or for the feature AND the short film).

Since then, Julia Ducournau has been added to this very short list for her film Titanium. That’s it that’s all.

Jane Campion is also the first woman director in the history of the Cannes Film Festival to have chaired the jury, 21 years after becoming the first woman to win the Palme d’Or.

Whether you like your cinema or not, Jane Campion remains a historical figure of the 7th art., and for that reason alone, it already deserves your full attention.

Jane Campion, feminist director

The 67-year-old New Zealand director has always been immersed in the dramatic arts, the fault of a theater director dad, who introduced her to the world of entertainment from an early age.

But very quickly, the filmmaker freed herself from her father’s apprenticeship to shaping her own art: an art turned towards women.

Thus, women are always at the heart of the films of Jane Campion – who has claimed to be a feminist since her beginnings – whether in The piano lesson of course (which, moreover, years after its release, was repressed for the glamourization of the hold of the male character on his heroine) – in Portrait of a Woman, Sweetie, Holy Smoke, Bright Star (one of our all-time favorite movies) and even in its very cutting edge series Top of the Lake.

Jane Campion & rsquo; s film is on Netflix: an opportunity to change your mind about her cinema

There is hardly that in The Power of The Dog (co-written by Thomas Savage), her latest film uploaded directly to Netflix, that she explores the field of masculinity, but with power and psychology, as we rarely see on television.

If the director is rather discreet in the media, loving cinema more than celebrity itself, she regularly gives her point of view on the transformation of our societies, and in particular on the evolving place of women within them. .

She expressed in particular to Guardian the notice that #MeToo was tagging “The end of apartheid for women” or that he signed “The collapse of the Berlin wall”.

The director does not weigh her words, as they do not weigh the weight of her images in the superb but traumatic The Piano Lesson Where Portrait of a woman.

Masculinity at the heart of Jane Campion’s latest film

It is fascinating to observe the transitions in the filmographies of authors and filmmakers, to understand how and where their obsessions slip.

Thus, Pedro Almodóvar, best known for filming women as few male directors do, abandoned his usual heroines in 2019 to present to the world Pain and Glory, a film essentially set on a devouring love story between two men. A spectacular work, both in its staging and in the treatment of its subject, which was well worth a detour from its usual path.

Jane Campion is doing the same this year. For a few moments, she leaves her heroines jostled by life (and especially by men) to explore a very testosterone world.

In The Power of The Dog, in fact, the filmmaker explores the conflicting relations of Phil and George Burbank, two brothers who are opposed to everything.

Jane Campion & rsquo; s film is on Netflix: an opportunity to change your mind about her cinema

As refined, brilliant, and cruel as Phil is, George is phlegmatic, meticulous, and benevolent. The two of them run the biggest ranch in the Montana Valley. A region far from the galloping modernity of the twentieth century, where men still assume their virility and where the figure of Bronco Henry, the greatest cowboy Phil has ever met, is revered.

When George secretly marries Rose, a young widow, Phil, drunk with anger, decides to destroy her. He then seeks to reach Rose by using his son Peter, a sensitive and effeminate boy, as a pawn in his sadistic and merciless strategy.

With a singular mastery of a story from which she is a priori very distant, Jane Campion explores the throes of toxic masculinity.

The director explained to the Guardian :

The film is about toxic masculinity. Trying to understand it and recognize it is the only way to change this masculinity. You can’t just oppose it, it would add fuel to the fire. You have to understand why these men are causing harm to others and to themselves. Addressing and questioning toxic masculinity is not enough. “

Nothing can resist Jane Campion’s analytical skills, which transforms the psychological and social questions of our time into images.

Because her cinema is deeply political and social, because she herself is committed, and because she made history, she deserves that you devote some of your time to her filmography, which is already available on Netflix.

Watch Jane Campion Movies on Netflix

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Jane Campion’s film is on Netflix: the opportunity to change your mind about her cinema