- Associated Press - Saturday, September 10, 2011

VENICE, ITALY (AP) - There’s no obvious choice to win the top prize at the Venice Film Festival this year, but a few of the 23 in-competition films have captured the fancy of fans and critics alike.

The Golden Lion will be awarded Saturday night by a jury headed by director Darren Aronofsky, whose “Black Swan” opened Venice last year.

Aronofsky has praised this year’s lineup as strong and says he’ll be looking for films that affect him “emotionally and intellectually.”

Critics have lauded Roman Polanski’s “Carnage,” starring Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz and John C. Reilly. Steve McQueen’s drama “Shame” and Russian filmmaker Aleksander Sokurov’s “Faust” have also won praise.

All contenders at the world’s oldest film festival were world premieres.

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