Director: Lukas Dhont (Girl)
The story: Leo & Remi, 13, are friends since forever until an unspeakable event drifts them apart.
Our verdict: Movie lovers, no Palme d’Or for Belgium this year at Cannes 2022, but we don’t care. Our small European country won 3 other great prizes at the popular French film festival, with the big win being the Grand Prix for Lukas Dhont’s latest film Close. His 2nd win after he won the Camera d’Or for his debut Girl in 2018.
It’s no secret that Lukas Dhont makes movies for the LGBTQ+ community, but there’s an art in making a movie that makes you forget all about that. And that’s what Close does: The innocent friendship between 2 young boys has never been so accessible and beautifully filmed through the lens of a director. And we can be very proud that he is Belgian! Once again Dhont shows his craftsmanship with beautiful images that portray the fragile tenderness of the main characters in such a great way. Young actor Eden Dambrine is a revelation on the big screen and Kevin Janssens again shows his masterly side with a very sharp & appropriate moment that will break many women’s hearts in an other ways than we are used to. The support of the adult cast (Emilie Dequenne & Lea Drucker) towards the youngsters is also top level. Be warned, because Close is a barrel full of emotion from start to finish with the sword of Damocles that you see coming from miles away and that will hit like the man with the hammer whilst running a marathon. What is it with Belgian films that come in like a right hook of Mike Tyson? Finally, the running time of Close is just over 100 minutes but feels like 90 minutes, making it anything but long-winded for its genre. A well deserved Grand Prix winner if don’t mind us saying!
So to conclude, with Close, Belgium gets an award winning movie in which its tenderness will make everyone’s opinion on sexual orientation between kids disappear like snow in the sun. Thank you for this contribution to the world, Lukas!