Eleven nominations for The Innocent by Louis Garrel, ten for The Night of 12 by Dominik Moll, nine for In body by Cédric Klapisch, nine for Pacificationseven for The Almond Trees and seven for November. The nominations in the 24 categories of César 2023 fell this morning shortly after 10 am. The 4,705 members of the Academy, 44% of whom are women, now have a month to vote, before the awards ceremony on February 24. At the end of a contrasting year for French cinema, which has not yet recovered from the pandemic, some 260 French films are eligible, some of which have come out on top.
Two thrillers, one funny, the other not
If Louis Garrel is almost unanimous with The Innocenthis (tremendous) detective comedy which he shares with Noémie Merlant, we are also delighted to see The Night of 12, just as police and just as successful in a much more dramatic register, appearing in second position before the ceremony. The film signed by the author of Harry, a friend who wishes you well (César for best director in 2001) and which plunges the viewer into the meanders of an unresolved investigation into a feminicide, triumphed at the Lumières prize, awarded at the beginning of the year by the international press.
The other big winner of this evening of Lights was Pacification, Torment on the Islands by Albert Serra that we also find prominently and in which Benoît Magimel, extraordinary, portrays a High Commissioner of the Republic in Tahiti. This strange Polynesian trip had also received the Louis-Delluc 2022 prize, tied with Saint-Omer by Alice Diop.
Not too much controversy in sight
We will again salute Cédric Klapisch, who won the favor of critics and the public with In body (1.3 million admissions), the story of a classical dancer (played by Marion Barbeau of the Paris Opera) who rebuilds herself in a contemporary dance company following an injury. It is surprising not to see any woman among the best directors. Where did Alice Diop, Alice Winocour, Rebecca Zlotowski, Mia Hansen-Love go? And even Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi whose film The Almond Trees appears in spite of everything in seven categories, but neither for the realization… nor for the male revelation. Its young actor Sofiane Bennacer, accused by four former companions and indicted for rape and violence against a spouse, does not appear there… It is a “whew” of relief for the Academy of Caesar which had taken the lead in enacting new rules aimed at avoiding hostile demonstrations during the ceremony. No risk of controversy to have to dodge therefore, for Tahar Rahim who will chair the evening, on February 24 at the Olympia, alongside Leïla Bekhti, Jérôme Commandeur, Jamel Debbouze, Emmanuelle Devos, Léa Drucker, Eye Haïdara, Alex Lutz, Raphaël Personnaz and Ahmed Sylla.