Sean Penn’s Black Flies Jolts Cannes With Gruesome Scenes, Mike Tyson

“Black Flies,” the Sean Penn and Tye Sheridan movie about emergency medical first responders, smacked the Cannes Film Festival within the face with a brutal world premiere on Thursday.

Splattered brains, lifeless canines, an addict giving beginning with a needle dangling from her arm — these and a litany of different horrors confronted Penn and Sheridan, who play veteran and rookie paramedics, respectively, on the New York Fire Department. Interestingly sufficient, the black-tie screening on the Grand Palais loved the dose of actuality, giving the movie a five-minute standing ovation.

“We carry the misery,” a weary Penn tells Sheridan within the movie of their chosen career. That’s an understatement, as chaos unfolds neighborhood by neighborhood in a portrait of an unforgiving metropolis.

“Black Flies” stars Sheridan as Ollie Cross, a younger paramedic in New York City who’s mentored by Penn’s more-experienced EMT. The two are pressured to face excessive violence throughout their shifts, from blood-soaked gunshot wounds to disturbing scenes of home violence and life-threatening pregnancies, forcing Ollie to confront his beliefs about life and dying. Legendary boxer Mike Tyson additionally stars within the movie as Chief Burroughs, Sheridan and Penn’s superior officer.

Penn, no stranger to Cannes, excited followers lining the Croisette upon arrival, however Sheridan received the gang hollering in the course of the ovation. The “Ready Player One” star served a lead and producer.

The movie’s many spectacles paid off in a somber remaining card displayed throughout credit — that suicides among the many emergency responder group eclipse affected person deaths in some areas.

The movie debuted in competitors, the place it’s up for the Palme d’Or towards new movies from the likes of Todd Haynes, Wes Anderson and extra. Penn has had a considerably rocky historical past, as of late, with Cannes. His directorial effort “The Last Face,” during which he starred reverse Charlize Theron, was one of many notorious bombs of the 2016 Cannes Film Festival, whereas 2021’s “Flag Day,” during which he starred reverse his daughter Dylan Penn, obtained a muted response on the Palais.

Sheridan not too long ago instructed Variety that he jumped on the likelihood to behave reverse Penn, and the 2 even researched the actual world of New York City paramedics collectively.

“We both got very into being medics,” Sheridan stated. “By the time we started shooting, we had a shorthand with each other. It was always fun and collaborative.”

“Black Flies” is in search of U.S. distribution out of Cannes.

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