Sunday, May 18, 2014

Day 4 at Cannes 2014

It is not until today that we are able to see the videos with interview, press conference for Nuri Bilge Ceylan's Winter Sleep, late but finally we are able to see something. Good. Seems that today we have very good-looking people in Cannes movies so hopefully we will have nice photos to share with you all.

The Competition

Saint Laurent by Bertran Bonello

A film with a cast plus a story timeline that makes film for me must be seen as I see everything with Léa Seydoux and Louis Garrel plus I know will like to see the late '60s -early '70s in Europe/France. But we have to acknowledge that is another movie about a real person that will please some while will not please other.

Will break my golden rule and will watch everything for a French film BUT know that will "close" my ears... constantly.


Even when not all the cast is in the photocall or Cannes, those that are in Cannes are all very easy on the eyes and perhaps up to this moment this group has the most attractive well-known (to me) actors which can't deny is refreshing especially when you are trying to wake up. Léa Seydoux looks fantastic in her stylish electric blue pantsuit by Prada (not YSL) which makes her to popup from the group, can't wait to see her in the red carpet tonight and I would not be surprised if she wears Saint Laurent again. Nice to see Jérémie Rénier. Oh! now everyone does selfies!!! Believe that photographers are mainly European as indeed they "behave" better than when American actors are in photocall. I enjoy this European savoir faire in this photocall as is what I really identify with Cannes, Jérémie Rénier is having fun with the photographers.

Okay I am so glad, photographers are misbehaving: Léa! Léa! Playing with her phone, taking photographs of the photographers. She really looks perfect in her electric blue smoking.

Nice, suggest you watch in French as there is no annoying translation -everyone speaks French! But I also suggest to not pay much attention to what they say as you would not like them to spoil the movie for you, would you? I don't. Léa Seydoux continues to be her beautiful self.

Press Conference
Very funny as the first question is by the presenter and yes it is the one that everyone wants to know, the difference/relation to the other Saint Laurent movie. Bertrand says he hasn't seen the other film, lol. Oui, is true in film we have Dominique Sanda and Helmut Berger! Keep asking the same question in different ways, stubborn press, what do they want them to say? Okay enough, skipping to Léa Seydoux parts.

Red Carpet where everyone should be wearing YSL, do you agree? Yes the fourth from left to right is Helmut Berger! Wow. Sorry that Dominique Sand is not here.

Before checking the reactions to the film let me share that I expect more negative than positive reviews. Why? The story, the story, the story... not the film style!

Reaction to film
Saint Laurent - a smirking deification. This second biopic of the fashion designer in as many years is cut from the same cloth as the first: swooning, self-absorbed and strangely lacking in any wider interest in society. (Ouch!-lol) (Peter Bradshaw-The Guardian)
A diffuse and uneven look at the life of one of France's greatest designers. (Boyd van Hoeij-THR)
A film mainly made up of interiors and often rather claustrophobic, it is intriguing rather than insightful and elegant rather than emotional. (Mark Adams-Screendaily) Finally a critic talking about the film style and is positive!
Bertrand Bonello has offered Cannes a flamboyant biopic plunging into the bright and dark mirror of a creative genius plagued by his demons. (Fabien Lemrcier-Cineuropa)

Relatos Salvajes by Damian Szifron

Definitively a film that I know will watch looking forward to understand why was selected to be in the competition. But learning that is a multi-layered film starts to make sense even when the promise of vengeance and destruction going hand in hand does not sound that promising unless director creates a powerful drama.

Photocall: Strongly suggest you do not skip just to see Pedro Almodovar the most colorful in the group that also includes, of course, Ricardo Darín. Yes, Pedro has lots of fun with the photographers even telling them that he had migraine for five hours so he needs to wear the dark eyeglasses.

Unfortunately NO Pedro Almodovar on main-table press conference (he is in the first row and yes camera goes to him often), probably because surely will steal the limelight, lol! But his brother Agustin is there, he is more serious, bah! No Spanish version so you have annoying translation voice-over in French or English depending on the version you see. Also, as many Latin Americans know, watching Argentineans can be very annoying (oops!) as they look and feel very "arrogant" without really being or trying. But Almdovar walked the red carpet (in photo).

Reactions to film
Du caca, de la mort aux rats, des explosifs et du sexe crade: le mix noir de Relatos Salvajes (Trois Couleurs)

Special Screenings

Tribute to Animation Film: Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet

The Festival pays tribute to animation film. The first images of Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet will be presented at an exclusive screening event.

The project, currrently in development, will be revealed in part by Salma Hayek, the film's producer, and the directors with whom she is working.

The more I think about this film the more nervous I get because is going to tell readings that changed/marked my life. Sigh. Still, animation looks great more French-style than anything else.

The project is still in the initial development stage but the Festival will offer a taster. For the occasion, Salma Hayek will host the event, with numerous guests present, including Julie Gayet, who will read extracts from The Prophet.

Midnight Screenings

The Salvation by Kristian Levring

A Danish western? Sounds different-weird-strange, isn't? Maybe but film absolutely is must be seen for me as Mads Mikkelsen is the lead plus also we have Jeffrey Dean Morgan. Well, also Eva Green that in this case does not excite me as I really like Mads performances and see everything with him, even a violent western that I hope has nothing American-style in it as we have to remember that Kristian Levring was the fourth signatory of Dogme 95 along with Thomas Vinterberg, Lars von Trier and Søren Kragh-Jacobsen. So I expect violent realism.

Just take a look at one line about the movie: America. 1870. Mads Mikkelsen plays John, a pioneer from Denmark whose family is brutally murdered. By slaying the killer, he provokes the anger of Delarue, a gang leader played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan… (me: nervous laugh).

Photocall is nice to watch but photographers go crazy with Eva; believe it or not I find Mads and Jeffrey to be more attractive than Eva (lol). But at least when Mads is alone photographers make lots of noise! Eva is so white that she stays in the dark shadows (lol).

I'll be watching all the videos as believe Mads is very easy on the eyes. Interview is great, suggest you watch it in English to have less translations. I really like Mads performances (including awesome TV show Hannibal that feels/look like a long movie -and will be longer as there will be a third season, yay!) and he performs very-well as himself too (lol). Best line from interview: A Danish making a western, it is not strange, it's crazy! Kristian Levring.

Un Certain Regard

Run by Philippe Lacôte

The first feature film by Côte-d’Ivoire-born Philippe Lacôte depicts the crisis which raged through his country at the beginning of the 2000s. Surely will not be easy-to-watch for the story that grew out of documentary work, so probably will have a very realistic/realism style.

Puzzling is to find that director's inspiration came from one sequence from Stalker by Tarkovsky, hmm.

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby by Ned Benson

The best I have read about this movie is the following line: Rare are those directors who, like Ned Benson, can call on such experienced actors as Jessica Chastain, James Mcavoy and Isabelle Huppert. when making their first feature film. Yes, indeed, not all directors are so blessed to have such a cast in their first feature film. In The Disappearance Of Eleanor Rigby the New York-based director tells the story of Eleanor and Conor, lovers whose romance is severely tested by an unhappy twist of fate. The film is in the running for the Caméra d’or. Very curious about this two films and of course, most interested in the Jessica Chastain character p-o-v version.  By the way, Isabelle Huppert plays mother to Jessica Chastain.

Jessica Chastain and James McAvoy arrived in Nice today, there are many photos from that moment but inexplicably, there are no Jessica photos from film premiere.

Reactions to film
Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby is just sublime. Wow. Beautiful film. (Sasha Stone-Awards Daily)
Jessica Chastain is heartbreaking in film (Gregory Ellwood-Hitfix)

Fehér Isten (White God) by Kornél Mundruczó

I can predict something for this movie even without seeing it: one of the protagonist could win the famous Palm Dog award! The only other know contender is Jean-Luc Godard's dog that is in his movie!

I know, I know is a story about dogs but surely is not only about dogs of the four-legged kind. Not sure what to think about this movie so will be waiting for the first reactions.

Reactions to film
White God: Arthouse Lassie meets Kill Bill. I like. (Boyd van Hoeij)

Cannes Classics
Another day with great cinema from Truffaut, Capra and Bernad; plus the opportunity to revisit Truffaut restored version of his movie with younger Catherine Deneuve, Gerard Depardieu and Jean Poiret.

Le Dernier Métro (The Last Metro) by Francois Truffaut
Lost Horizon by Frank Capra
Les Croix de Bois by Raymond Bernard

Cinéma de la Plage
Il buono, il brutto, il cattivo (The Good, The Bad and The Ugly) by Sergio Leone
Another classic spaghetti western with Clint Eastwood.

Quinzaine des Réalisateurs

National Gallery by Frederick Wiseman

I love art. Love museums. Love paintings. But watching in a theater or at home a 3 hour documentary about one museum is too much to ask from me. Sigh. Maybe in installments and definitively at home with a good HD Stream or Blue-ray; a possibility just because a line: the relation between painting and storytelling is explored, referring to "every human experience is represented in one or another of the 2,400 paintings from the 13th to the end of the 19th century". Sigh.

Reactions to film
The latest long-form documentary from the veteran film-maker is illuminating both because of and despite its reverent intimacy with its subject. (Andrew Pulver-The Guardian)

Les Combattants (Love at First Sight) by Thomas Cailley

Very curious about film as I like almost everything with Adèle Haenel and this film style could be more arty than the regular fare besides Adèle is playing another tomboy, which makes me think that she tends to be type-casted as even in L'Apollonide she played a rude/brusque/tough character.

Glad press reactions tend to be positive with a few exceptions from non-reliable English-speaking critics (lol). Of Course this film is must be seen for me.

Reactions to film
Aggression, not affection, sparks romance in “Les Combattants,” a promising feature debut that already had members of the French film establishment touting newcomer Thomas Cailley as the next big thing (Peter Debruge-Variety)
Std ovation post screening Love at First Fight (les combattants). Lots of clapping, whooping. Such a gem, full of heart (Christelle Randall)
Excellent, Les Combattants, très drôle, syncopé et constamment surprenant (Eric Vernay)
Accueil hyper chaleureux pour #lescombattants premier film français très réussi à @Quinzaine (Yannick Vely)

La Semaine de la Critique

It Follows by David Robert Mitchell

American horror that is getting rave reviews from French press. Interesting. Has called my attention.

Reactions to film
La rumeur qui précédait It Follows de David Robert Mitchell n’était pas volée. Ce teenage horror movie cartonne. Film culte en devenir. (Cyrille Falisse- Le Passeur Critique)
Teen-movie fantastique, horrifique, planant, envoûtant (Emmanuel Pujol)
Élégant et intriguant #ItFollows est 1 film d'épouvante aux MST surnaturelles et à la bande originale électro anxiogène. (Abus de ciné)
Wow! super It Follows might be my favourite film so far. The real deal: scary, beautiful, spine-tingling (Catherine Bray).

Respire (Breathe) by Melanie Laurent

No need to say that I am very curious about this film that perhaps is the one with the most clear lesbian interest in the whole festival but also because story and style seem to be of the kind I like to see especially in French cinema.

From the few reviews up at this moment seems that is not your regular lesbian love story but I am not surprised, first is at La Semaine where always weird films are screened and second, one critic was comparing film to Kechiche film (which I find highly positive) but while Kechiche went the social/political way, Laurent goes the more conventional. Well, I have to see what they mean by conventional.

Check synopsis: Charlie, une jeune fille de 17 ans. L'âge des potes, des émois, des convictions, des passions. Sarah, c'est la nouvelle. Belle, culottée, un parcours, un tempérament. La star immédiate, en somme. Sarah choisit Charlie.

Reactions to film
Respire est une chronique adolescente qui se transforme sous nos yeux horrifiés mais admiratifs en film d’horreur. (Thomas Sotinel-Le Monde)
Muy buenos comentarios y 9 min de aplausos para 'Respire', segundo film como directora de Melanie Laurent (Rene Naranjo)
Encore sous le choc, bouleversé par #Respire de Mélanie Laurent (Cannes en Live!)

Short Films Program 1
The first short films in the section and festival will screen today.
Boa noite Cinderela (Goodnight Cinderela) Carlos Conceição
Le Contre-allee (Back Alley) by Cécile Ducrocq
Petit frere (Little Brother) by Rémi St-Michel
Safari by Gerardo Herrero
A Blue Room by Tomasz Siwiński


Spartacus & Cassandra by Ioanis Nuguet

A documentary with no distribution so finding film info is hard. The following is the plot summary available only in French.

Deux enfants rroms sont recueillis par une jeune trapéziste dans un chapiteau à la périphérie de Paris. Un havre de paix fragile pour ce frère et sa sœur de 13 et 10 ans, déchirés entre le nouveau destin qui s’offre à eux, et leurs parents vivant dans la rue.


-Today the world of European cinema is to converge once more on Cannes for a conference envisioning a creative Europe, and the ceremony to award the MEDIA Prize to the Bosnian director Danis Tanović, co-screenwriter Predrag Kojovic and producer Amra Baksic Camo for the project What are you looking at?, the story of a post-war town's descent into corruption.

-Yesterday the prix France Culture Cinéma was given to directors Margarethe Von Trotta (mention consécration) and Dyana Gaye (mention révélation). If you do not know who Margarethe von Trotta is let me share the name of a three of her films, starting with her latest, strong Hannah Arendt, Paura e Amore (Three Sisters) with Fanny Ardant, Valeria Golino and Greta Scacchi; and great Rosa Luxemburg.

-Today Sylvester Stallone received the Legend Award at the ISCHIA Global fest event. So he is Cannes and soon there will tanks all over the Cannes streets as there will be a promotion event for the Expendables 3 (or 4?).  Guess who else is in Cannes? Jason Statham, Antonio Banderas, Dolph Lundgren, Wesley Snipes, Harrison Ford and the question now is: who is NOT in Cannes? lol.

Not-so-serious News

-Press are leaking non-positives comments about press screening of a film with Robert Pattinson. Will repeat myself once more: he doesn't know how to act and should take acting lessons before his limelight time is over. Of course American viewers have different opinion (LOL!).

-OH! My! Oh my! Just discovered that there is a Mockingjay-Part 1 Photocall! ... and guess who is in Cannes just days after filming in a banlieue de Paris?  Jennifer Lawrence. Next time she should come with a movie, maybe is time to stop for a while earning humongous amounts of money in blockbuster films and do a film that will take her to Cannes!

-Roman Polanski is watching Saint Laurent right now.

Photos of the Day

Léa Seydoux

Jessica Chastain

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