2021 Venice Best Director

Jane Campion's first feature film since 2009's Bright Star and the series Top of the Lake is a superb noir western set in a ranch. Based on Thomas Savage's mystery-thriller novel set in Montana, The Power of the Dog follows the charismatic rancher Phil Burbank (Benedict Cumberbatch) who inspires fear and awe in those around him. When his brother brings home a new wife and her son, Phil torments them. The film had its world premiere at the 78th Venice International Film Festival, where Campion won the Silver Lion for Best Direction. Campion says, “the ethos of masculinity that is heralded in the cowboy world, it’s very romanticized. Power is always it. And money is often power.”