Back in May, Lukas Dhont, still only 31 years of age, competed for the Palme d'Or in Cannes. It proved to be a historic edition of the Cannes film festival for Belgium, with the Grand Prix for Dhont as the ultimate highlight. During the first screenings, the sobbing exceeded the applause. It's proof that the filmmaker from Ghent again delivers intimate, sensitive cinema with a lot of empathy, never judging or condemning his characters. Close also benefits from the exceptional talent of its young newcomers Eden Dambrine and Gustav De Waele who, in their own way, shape heartbreak in the innocent life of a teenager. Emilie Dequenne, who made her debut in Rosetta by the Dardenne brothers (a source of inspiration for Dhont), plays Remi's mother. Her bond with Leo is so natural and yet so unique in cinema. D.o.P. Frank van den Eeden's graceful cinematography is an enchanting feat. And Valentin Hadjadj's score is incredibly moving, just like each and every ingredient of Dhont's equally personal and universal film. Close is Belgian cinema at its most fragile. And at its very best.
Eden Dambrine, Gustav De Waele, Emilie Dequenne, Léa Drucker, Kevin Janssens
Lukas Dhont, Angelo Tijssens
Frank van den Eeden
Michiel Dhont, Dirk Impens
Lumiere Publishing NV
Belgium, Netherlands, France
Headlong (short, 2012), Skin of Glass (short, 2012), L'infini (short, 2014), Girl (2018), Our Nature (short, 2021), Close (2021)