‘The Sisters Brothers’ Impresses Audiences in Venice

Audiences gave “The Sister Brothers” a five-minute standing ovation following its debut at the Venice Film Festival.

After the premiere, actor John C. Reilly, director Jacques Audiard, and composer Alexandre Desplat were beaming as they congratulated each other. The film’s co-stars Joaquin Phoenix and Jake Gyllenhaal were not at the screening. The cast also includes Riz Ahmed, Rebecca Root, Rutger Hauer, and Carol Kane.

In his review for Variety, chief film critic Owen Gleiberman called it “a Western ramble that’s witty and watchable yet still a touch wearying.”

Earlier in the day, “The Sisters Brothers” also received an enthusiastic response at a press screening, where some members of the audience cheered as the credits rolled.

At an afternoon news conference, Audiard called on film festivals, including Venice, to have better representation of women — even though “The Sisters Brothers” itself has hardly any female characters, and not a single one in a major role. Reilly acknowledged that disparity, but contended that the film itself addresses “masculinity and the gender balance” and noted that half of the movie’s crew members were women.

The Venice premieres of Damien Chazelle’s “First Man” and Luca Guadagnino’s remake of horror classic “Suspiria,” among others, have also been greeted with standing ovations on the Lido.

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