Pacifiction (in-person & online)
Benoît Magimel, Pahoa Mahagafanau, Marc Susini, Matahi Pambrun
From Catalan filmmaker Albert Serra, uncompromising director of The Death of Louis XIV, Story of My Death and Liberté, comes this startling apocalyptic mystery, an immersive tropical thriller set in paradise.
Tahiti: Benoît Magimel is De Roller, High Commissioner for French Polynesia, one of the ‘overseas territories’ still ruled from Paris as a vestige of the French empire. A calculating man, he’s involved in everything – meeting with activist leaders, persuading a priest to endorse a new casino – both official matters and shady dealings. But soon he becomes an amateur detective, as signs point to the French government resuming nuclear weapons testing in the region; an environmentally destructive practice which previously led to a steep rise in cancer deaths.
Serra hangs an array of ideas about neo-colonialist exploitation, cultural tourism and shifting identities on this conspiratorial narrative, all delivered via lurid, beautifully shot panoramic imagery that pulls you into its orbit. Part paranoid political thriller, part philosophical reverie, Pacifiction offers audiences a hynoptic tour of modern Tahiti.