PostED ON MONDAY, OCTOBER 16, 2017
The Auditorium of Lyon is packed to the rafters when the maestro, accompanied by Guillermo del Toro and Thierry Frémaux, takes the stage, drowning in the applause of a crowd of ecstatic young people, instantly on their feet. Mann is in Lyon to present the director's cut of his masterpiece, Heat, restored in 4K and considered a classic. He is interviewed with passion and admiration by the Mexican filmmaker, who aptly points out the thematic coherence and auteur dimension of the American’s work.
© Institut Lumière / Olivier Chassignole
Long live the Lumière festival, which alone allows for these encounters with top-caliber artists, for the benefit of the greatest number of people. We should nevertheless be on guard: in the row of armchairs on stage, there seems to be a remake of Alain Cavalier's “Pater” going on… meaning a voluble, boisterous, passionate exchange between the “president” and his "prime minister" for a night (Vincent Lindon, aka Rodin, aka Fred along with other powerfully incarnated roles), who, carried away by his fervor, punctuates us with raging kicks in our seat, like exclamation points!
When the conversation turns to Heat, Mann reveals that the producers had decided, before even seeing the film, to chop off half an hour. However, after the first screening, they gave in to its duration, awed by the film’s mastery and brilliance! Mann also quotes one of his favorite poems: "If the woman is too fast and the man too hurried, love is too short!" The filmmaker further confirms his respect for the audience and the pleasure he takes in counting on the alacrity of its intelligence in order to develop his conciseness of style. Finally, when asked about the mythical scene that features the two heavyweights - Pacino and De Niro - together, putting an end to the rumor that they have never shared a movie set, Mann admits he has wide shots that included the two stars in the same frame but, he insists, it took away from the scene’s power.
Buoyed by his zeal, Guillermo del Toro lingers, extending the session with praise, asking the master multiple questions, including during the translation, much to the dismay of the interpreter, who is struggling to keep up, under the amused gaze of the crowd. At long last, the screening begins, to the great satisfaction of a “prime minister,” on the verge of implosion, who obviously was not planning on delaying his enjoyment any longer...