Malcolm & Marie on Netflix: what is this closed door which gives Zendaya her best role?

“Malcolm & Marie”, available from February 5th on Netflix, is the third feature film from Sam Levinson, creator of “Euphoria”. For this radical film, the director finds an electric Zendaya which reveals another facet of his talent.

Malcolm & marie on netflix: what is this closed door which gives zendaya her best role?
Netflix

What is it about ?

After the preview screening of his latest film, a filmmaker returns home with his girlfriend. While it is certain that his film will meet with critical and commercial success, the evening takes an unexpected turn: the two lovers must face certain truths about their relationship that put the strength of their feelings to the test …

Malcolm & Marie directed and written by Sam levinson

What does it look like ?

Who is it with?

Malcolm & Marie is carried by two talents with very different trajectories. As the heroine, Zendaya plays a role written specifically for her by Sam levinson. A former Disney Channel star, the 2020 Emmy Award-winning actress continues to explore her dark side after the success of Euphoria. With this film, the American abandons the roles of high school girls who made her known for that of a more mature young woman. Revealed in the BlacKkKlansman of Spike Lee, John David Washington – the son of Denzel Washington – plays Malcolm, a young director who is a bit megalomaniac. After Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, blockbuster of the year 2020, the actor radically changes register with this intimate drama.

Well worth a look ?

Zendaya and Sam Levinson are a working duo. Caught in the tornado Euphoria, they collaborate once again in Malcolm & Marie, the director’s third film. After Another Happy Day, a comedy about a dysfunctional family, and Assassination Nation, a satire of American youth, the filmmaker opts for a high-powered black and white drama. He is inspired by an anecdote lived with his wife and begins to write during confinement, in April 2020, at the request of the actress. Filming takes place over two weeks during the summer. The project is not a homemade film, but almost. The two actors invested their own money in the production. Team reduced forces on the set, Zendaya even took care of her wardrobe, in addition to her hairstyle and her makeup.

Unusual, Malcolm & Marie is therefore in its conception, but also in substance. The plot follows the raging conflicts of a couple during a whole night. The arguments intensified and the situation took on the appearance of a boxing match. As a ring, Sam Levinson chooses the Caterpillar House, a building architectural building located in Carmel, California. The house becomes the playground of the actors, but also of the camera which navigates through the corridors. The scenes of nervous breakdowns and the impassioned monologues make Malcolm & Marie a artwork which is similar to a play. Obviously talkative, the film is a radical proposition that should not be to everyone’s liking.

Check out the interview with Zendaya, John David Washington and Sam Levinson:

Very elegant, each shot is like a fashion photo from a glossy magazine. The grain of the image and the black and white give the feature film, shot in 35mm, a timeless aspect. It is the Hungarian cinematographer Marcell Rév – faithful collaborator of the director – who signs the photograph. But Malcolm & Marie is not reduced to its polished aesthetic. Sam Levinson confirms his writing skills and his talent as a dialogue writer. He once again addresses addiction through the character of Mary, an autobiographical theme already present in his first two films and the series. Euphoria.

Another Zendaya

The text gains in intensity thanks to the excellent performance of the two actors. John David Washington brilliantly embodies a selfish, cowardly and unfriendly man who lets go of his anger against the American press in enjoyable scenes. “I had the opportunity to get involved in the script, to change things after many conversations. Sam Levinson’s words are sublime, but he’s never closed to proposals“, explains the actor to AlloCine. Facing him, Zendaya is brighter than ever. The actress shows the extent of her range of play, in particular at the turn of a striking scene involving a kitchen knife. After having received many distinctions following his work in Euphoria, the actress finds her best role here. She is the spark of the film.

If its cinematographic qualities are undeniable, theartwork addresses above all a fascinating subject: the balance of power. The age difference of the couple – she was born in 1996, he in 1984 – then takes on its full meaning. The feature film evokes the invisibility of women in a world created for men. The character of the director, put in the light, appropriates the experience of his partner for his personal glory and to satisfy his ego without ever giving him the honors she deserves. An idea that allows the film to fit perfectly into its time. The artistic bond that unites Zendaya and Sam Levinson promises to offer many surprises. Hoping that Malcolm & Marie is just the beginning of a long story.

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