Alejandro González Iñárritu has released the first trailer for his Netflix Oscar contender “Bardo” — and the entire movie is now 22 minutes shorter.
The Mexican filmmaker and two-time best director winner’s eighth film, “Bardo (or False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths),” premiered at this year’s Venice Film Festival. After screening at Venice and Telluride, Iñárritu went back into the edit room and cut down 22 minutes from the film, bringing its runtime to two hours and 32 minutes, without credits.
“The first time I saw my film was with 2,000 people in Venice,” Iñárritu told IndieWire. “That was a nice opportunity to see it and learn about things that could benefit from being tied up a bit, add one scene that never arrived on time, and move the order of one or two things. Little by little, I tightened it, and I am very excited about it.”
Reviews for the film have been mixed, with Variety’s chief film critic Owen Gleiberman writing, “The movie is full of good things, but it’s three hours long and mostly it’s full of itself.”
After “Bardo’s” run at Venice and Telluride, Iñárritu said he hasn’t read a review of his film. “I want to reaffirm that I have not read one single review for my healthy mental state,” he told IndieWire. “There is nobody better than me who knows all the dots that connect and how they could connect better.”
Billed as a comedy, “Bardo” stars Daniel Giménez Cacho as an acclaimed Mexican journalist and documentary filmmaker who returns to his home in the middle of an existential crisis that leaves him questioning his identity, family relationships and his past. Griselda Siciliani co-stars along with Cacho in the film.
“Bardo” is the first film that Iñárritu has helmed since “Birdman” and “The Revenant” made him one of three directors to win consecutive best director trophies at the Oscars. Although the filmmaker initially had plans to work on a television series for Starz called “The One Percent,” that project was postponed after he felt burnt out from the taxing production of “The Revenant.”
Iñárritu shot and produced “Bardo” entirely in Mexico, making it the first project the director has made in his home country since his debut feature, “Amores Perros,” in 2000. The director co-wrote the script with his “Birdman” and “Biutiful” collaborator Nicolás Giacobone. “Bardo” was also shot by Oscar-nominated cinematographer Darius Khondji.
“Bardo” was one of four Netflix films set to premiere in Venice. Also making the cut were Andrew Dominik’s highly anticipated Marilyn Monroe drama “Blonde,” Noah Baumbach’s Don DeLillo adaptation “White Noise” and Romain Gavras’ modern tragedy “Athena.” With Iñárritu’s strong history at the Oscars, the film is likely to be one of the streamer’s biggest Oscar contenders of the year.
The film releases in theaters on Nov. 18. and on Netflix Dec. 16. Watch the trailer below.