By Matt Neglia
The New York Film Festival continues to add to its slate for its 59th annual film festival. Today, they announced that Jane Campion’s upcoming Netflix film, “The Power Of The Dog,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, and Jesse Plemons, will be the Centerpiece Film at this year’s NYFF on October 1st.
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The plot synopsis from NYFF reads as follows:
Campion reaffirms her status as one of the world’s greatest—and most gratifyingly eccentric—filmmakers with this mesmerizing, psychologically rich variation on the American western. Adapted from a 1967 cult novel by Thomas Savage that was notoriously ahead of its time in depicting repressed sexuality, The Power of the Dog excavates the emotional torment experienced at a Montana cattle ranch in the 1920s. Here, melancholy young widow Rose (Kirsten Dunst) has come to live with her sensitive new husband, George (Jesse Plemons), though their lives are increasingly complicated by the erratic, potentially violent behavior of his sullen and bullying brother, Phil (Benedict Cumberbatch), whose mistrust of both Rose and her misfit son (Kodi Smit-McPhee) leads to tragic consequences. Mirroring the unpredictable story turns, Campion crafts a film of unexpected cadences and rhythms, and her daring is matched every step of the way by her extraordinary, fully immersed cast and a mercurial, destabilizing score by Jonny Greenwood.
“I am very honored that The Power of the Dog has been selected as the Centerpiece Gala at this year’s New York Film Festival,” said director Jane Campion. “Public screenings we long took for granted feel exceptional now, so it is going to be a very emotional and joyous experience for me and my team to be there and present the film to such a film-celebrating audience.”
“We couldn’t be happier to welcome Jane Campion back to the festival with one of her very best films,” said Dennis Lim, NYFF Director of Programming. “Everything about The Power of the Dogis alive with surprise: its narrative turns, its rich characterizations, its complex ideas about masculinity and repression. It will introduce many to the work of the under-appreciated novelist Thomas Savage, but it also reminds us of what cinema can do as a medium for accessing and expressing inner life.”
The New York Film Festival will run this year September 24 – October 10, 2021 and festival passes are currentlyon sale.
With the announcement now of “The Tragedy Of Macbeth” as the Opening Night film and “The Power Of The Dog” as the Centerpiece film, what do you think will be the Closing Night film? My guess is still “Tick, Tick…BOOM!” due to its many New York connections. Many are currently predicting Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Soggy Bottom” but I do not believe it will be finished in time. We’ll see soon enough. “The French Dispatch” has already been announced as being a part of this year’s Main Slate, and we’ll indeed be finding out the full lineup before August is over. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below or on our Twitter account.
You can follow Matt and hear more of his thoughts on the Oscars and Film on Twitter at @NextBestPicture