French film on illegal abortion wins top prize at Venice festival

Sunday, 2021-09-12 10:12:12
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The 78th Venice Film Festival - Awards Ceremony - Venice, Italy, September 11, 2021 - Director Audrey Diwan receives the Golden Lion award for Best Film. (Photo: Reuters)
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"Happening" (L'événement), a hard-hitting French drama about illegal abortion in the 1960s, won the Golden Lion award for best film at the Venice festival on Saturday.

The runner-up Grand Jury prize went to Italian director Paolo Sorrentino for "The Hand of God", his deeply personal film about losing his parents as a teenager. New Zealand's Jane Campion won the Silver Lion for best director with 1920s frontier drama "The Power of the Dog".

The awards for the 78th edition of the festival on the Lido waterfront bring the curtain down on a high-quality and star-studded 11-day movie marathon, with critics calling the contest for the top prize one of the most unpredictable in years.

"Happening", by French director Audrey Diwan, is the second French film to win a major festival since Julia Ducournau scooped up the Palme D'Or in Cannes with serial-killer movie "Titane" in July.

Reuters