Hot Docs review: The Most Beautiful Boy In The World
Film about Björn Andrésen, the teen from 70s classic Death In Venice, is unpredictable and disturbing
THE MOST BEAUTIFUL BOY IN THE WORLD (Kristian Petri, Kristina Lindstrom, Sweden). 94 minutes. Rating: NNN
Ever wonder what happened to Björn Andrésen, the teenager who played the fatal object of desire in Luchino Visconti’s 70s cinema classic Death In Venice? Swedish directors Petri and Lindstrom find out in this unpredictable and sometimes disturbing film, which charts the actor and musician’s journey from open-casting call to Japanese pop idol stardom to obscure destitution.
The Most Beautiful Boy In The World is fundamentally about what happens when artists make children into beauty standards, resulting in a tragic and ironic reversal of the dynamics at play in the Thomas Mann story on which Visconti’s film was based. You get the sense a lot is being left out, which is fine, as the film works as an oddball fly-on-the-wall tale that trusts its audience to fill in the blanks.
Available to stream from April 29 at 10 am here