Armageddon Time: Film depicting the Trump family attacks capitalism, says director | Movies

A new movie set in 1980s New York, featuring Fred, the father of Donald Trump’s real estate mogul, and his sister, high-profile lawyer Marianne, is a head-on attack on late-stage capitalism, according to the lead cast and director.

Armageddon Time premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, starring Succession Jeremy Strong alongside Academy Award winner Jessica Chastain as Maryanne Trump, during the run-up to Ronald Reagan’s election as president, and examines the layers of characters in the film. A privilege that determines the future of children attending different schools in the same city.

James Gray at the Armageddon Time press conference in Cannes on Friday.
James Gray at the Armageddon Time press conference in Cannes on Friday. Photo: Stefano Rilandini/AFP/Getty Images

Its writer and director, James Gray, said: “I think we’re in serious trouble. History is very complex, but there are inflection points every few years and this moment in the ’80s was one of them.”

“These kids at the private school are going to run everything and they know it,” Gray said. “There is something petrified in a system that keeps the same people at the top. Why not look at this system that requires a level of oppression to operate? I was trying to show the layers of that system and that idea of ​​privilege.”

Strong, who plays aspiring world mogul Kendall Roy in Succession, said it is possible to “find the genomes” of the “final decadence in the United States” in the film.

“You can find a thread that connects these two worlds,” the actor who plays a version of Gray’s grumpy, working-class father told Armageddon Time. “The Caliphate did not exist for me when I was in the world of this movie, but it is true that the fault lines we see begin to rupture in this story have widened and become the political and social divisions we see now.”

While Armageddon Time focuses primarily on the hopes of members of a struggling Jewish family, the broader story depicts the period of American politics that Gray believes led to the racism, inequality, and muddled morals of today.

Jeremy Strong as Irving Graf and Anne Hathaway as Esther Graf in the time of Armageddon.
Jeremy Strong as Irving Graf and Anne Hathaway as Esther Graf in the time of Armageddon. Photo: Courtesy of Focus Features

The director was twelve years old at the time of the shooting of his movie. As a fan of Muhammad Ali and the Beatles, Reagan’s election in 1980 came at the same time as the boxing ring’s defeat of Leon Spinks, the shooting of John Lennon in Manhattan, and the renewed threat of nuclear conflict. He said the birth of the market economy’s dominance, along with the end of the “New Hollywood” adventure films that Gray loves, didn’t help either, he said.

“How did we get here?” the director asked. With everything owned by two people and a group of tyrants trying to take over the planet? Kids today don’t even understand the phrase “sold out”, and they think it means there are no tickets left.”

He bemoaned the importance of movie franchises in the entertainment industry and spoke of the lasting impact of white privilege in America, although he said he wrote the Armageddon Time script before the death of George Floyd and the return of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Young actor Jaylene Webb plays a poor black schoolboy in the film, a character who has no resources to call when faced with prejudice and disadvantage. “Fortunately I never experienced what Johnny got to experience growing up,” he said.

Anne Hathaway, who plays Esther Graff, a character inspired by Gray’s mother, said she was inspired by the warmth of her late mother-in-law when portraying it.

“Who does not have the honor to play the role of a Jewish mother?” The actor said, holding back the tears. “My husband is Jewish. We talked about what it means for our family to take on this role.”

Gray said that an old friend recently advised him not to read newspapers or watch the news if he wanted to lift his mood, but said that wasn’t an option for him.

He said, “Things weigh me down, but if you’re a creative person, you can’t separate yourself from the world. I have no idea how to solve inequality issues, so you have to bring it up to the public. I don’t think it’s my job to get an answer. As artists, we’re here.” to ask questions.”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.