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Albert Serra’s Adult Libertine Fairy Tale Explores The Limits of Hedonism (18+)

The Spanish writer-director challenges the audience with his latest work Liberté. Adapted from his play which debuted at Berlin in 2018 and having had its premiere in Cannes, it – typically to Serra’s work – strictly parts the audience in those that do or do not accept to follow the director’s vision. The RIGA IFF screening will take place on the evening of October 23.

The film – spanning more than 2 hours in duration – not only challenges the audience to immerse itself in the challenging territory of boundless satisfaction of the pleasure, but also to indulge in the multilayered message and lack of emotion characteristic of Marquis de Sade.

Shortly before the French Revolution, the aristocrats expelled from the puritanical court of Louis XVI seek the support of the legendary Duc de Walchen, German seducer and freethinker. They aim to export libertinage – an extreme hedonism that rejects moral boundaries and authorities. But moreover – to find a safe place to pursue their errant games, where the quest for pleasure no longer obeys any laws. And they find themselves in a dark forest clearing…

Bodies, impulses, desire. The libertines craved liberty. The film is asking what it is that this liberty leads to, which absence? And is this absence bearable? Serra wants the film to physically impact the viewer and produce the type of stunned state you can be in when you walk out of a night club in the early hours of the morning. When you can no longer distinguish what you’ve seen from what you’ve heard or what you’ve imagined.

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