The Most Beautiful Boy In The World
The documentary portrays Björn Andrésen, who played Tadzio at 15 in Visconti‘s DEATH IN VENICE and was labeled as “the most beautiful boy in the world.“
For his Thomas Mann adaptation DEATH IN VENICE, Luchino Visconti travelled across all of Europe to find a boy with “honey-colored hair, like a God from Greek mythology“ who could be cast in the role of Tadzio, an embodiment of pure beauty. The search, which is uncomfortably reminiscent of the selection of angelic victims in Pasolini‘s SALO: 120 DAYS OF SODOM, takes the film team to Sweden. Here they meet 15 year old Björn Andrésen who is immediately cast and is labelled “The Most Beautiful Boy in the World“ at the London premiere,
Marketed by Visconti, passed around in the Parisian Bohème, and rented out to the Japanese pop industry, his beauty and the shocking lack of care for Andrésen quickly turn him into a product. “It felt like a swarm of bats around me, the whole time. It was a waking nightmare.“ This vampiric nightmare, in which primarily older men were having the time of their life with Andrésen‘s youth and beauty, is one that the now 65 year old still hasn‘t fully awakened from. The events since his first meeting with Visconti have visibly marked him – but THE MOST BEAUTIFUL BOY IN THE WORLD is more than just about the impact of his ‘discovery.‘ It portrays the healing and discovery process of a sensitive, cranky, and yes, still incredibly good-looking man with long silver hair and a leather jacket, who confronts the stations of his abuse and his dark family history while being cautiously accompanied by Kristina Lindström und Kristian Petri. Recently, Andrésen let his skull get crushed as the aging cult leader in MIDSOMMAR. Andrésen‘s own idea of “aging gracefully“ is thankfully different, but it is also very suitable for film.
Translation: Elinor Lewy
Original title: Världens vackraste pojke
Schweden 2021, 93 min
Language: English, French, Italian
Director: Kristina Lindström, Kristian Petri
Author: Kristina Lindström, Kristian Petri
DOP: Erik Vallsten
Montage: Dino Jonsäter, Hanna Lejonqvist
Music: Filip Leyman, Anna Von Hausswolff
- OV Original version
- OmU Original with German subtitles
- OmeU Original with English subtitles
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