Saturday, May 20, 2017

Day 4 at #Cannes2017

The most unusual question came up yesterday, why you don't do reviews anymore? Have no answer but to say that maybe will do it again, eventually when the "dry" spell I'm is over. No matter how dry the spell is, I love to learn about movies and there you have it, that's the reason why I like to do this day-to-day Cannes coverage where I learn about movies already know I like and more important, discover movies that I didn't have idea could like.  That's the answer to the second question, why do I do this daily Cannes coverage?  If you miss my reviews the next best thing for now is to learn which films call my attention as surely will enjoy them and perhaps you, loyal readers, too.  So, that's it. Thank you for your questions.

Today is another interesting day as there are several films that call my attention; unless I really lost my sight into the future, the Queer Palm winner will be seen today by audiences plus juries and was seen yesterday by the press with the very positive reactions. Also today a quiet American film which is kind of an oxymoron especially because has two top Hollywood stars and a Mexican film with all the right credentials including an actress from the last Almodovar film.

Just read something that unfortunately is true.  There are many films in Cannes 2017 that are outstanding or have the right credentials for audiences to see; but, most will not be seen in theaters.  So true. So sad. Maybe they should make a deal with Netflix and perhaps the world can see them, sigh.

Official Selection


120 Battements par minute [BPM (Beats per Minute)] by Robin Campillo

Of course I'm highly interested in watching this film that unless something inexplicable happens will win the Queer Palm and now I'm sure after the most positive reactions after the press screening.  Seems film generated lots of emotions in the audience, including tears and many are saying Nahuel Pérez Biscayart has become the front-runner for the Best Actor award (too early to call) but it's interesting that this Argentinean actor leads for now.

Will not deny that I'm Adèle Haenel fan (just look how many photos are in my Cannes pinterest-lol)  and try to see everything with her, so yes that's another reason for film to be must-be-seen for me and as of this moment, I'm preparing the tissues as know it will be a strong emotional ride. Sigh.

Press Reactions
Reactions are on the very positive side of the scale with very few going to the negative or center position.  Most interesting is the fact that reactions are positive in all languages I understand, which is not usual; then, also, known-to-me LGBT critics and straight ones agree -which is more unusual for a LGBT film.

-Robin Campillo commemorates the legacy of direct-action group ACT UP with a movie that is tragic, urgent and full of cinematic life. Peter Bradshaw-The Guardian, UK
-Conventional but enhanced by its intelligence and restraint. Has a poetic ending, goes 10 more minutes. Tim Grierson-Rolling Stone, USA
-Our first legitimate Palme contender. Draining, powerful. I cried! Matt Hoffman-TIFF, Canada
-Essential viewing. Film gracefully, sharply humanizes a historical tragedy. Richard Lawson-Vanity Fair, USA
-Déchirant... puissant..." Robin Campillo fait vibrer le coeur, Vincent Formica-allocine, France
-Très très fort #120battementsparminute.Film de lutte, film de bande, histoire d'amour déchirante, mortifère et traversé d'une énergie dingue. Renan Cros-TroisColeurs, France
-2000 personnes qui sortent d'une salle, en pleurs et dans le silence #120battementsparminute le choc #Cannes2017. Barbara Govaerts, France
-Like God's Own Country, 120 Beats Per Minute has one of the most visceral and moving gay sex scenes on film. Gregory Ellwood-The Playlist, USA

Regarding the Cannes Soundtrack Award this was said today.
120 Heartbeats per minute by Robin Campillo is showed today for the official selection. First time in Cannes for this director, this deeply moving drama traces back the beginings of Act-up during the first discovers of aids. Arnaud Rebotini, electronic musician and founder of Black Strobe, composed the score of this powerful and committed film. 

The Square by Ruben Östlund

Love Östlund films and still the best for me is 2008 Involuntary, but enjoyed Force Majeure and yes, I'm looking forward to see his latest even when is his first in a language that is not his mother tongue.  But having Elisabeth Moss and Dominic West makes me feel a little at ease and after reading press reactions believe that will highly enjoy film.  Great.

Alright press reactions were divided BUT for this film, will pay attention to those critics I know like great cinema (lol) and surprise (!) all their reactionsare positive!  There are some that went back today to reconsider what they said spontaneously yesterday, which only says film will be the kind I like, complex not easy (obvious) to digest.  Bravo!!! Can't wait.

Perhaps is not top award material according to most press reactions but you never know what the jury will do and this year's jury has a mix of Europe-America, directors-actors that could surprise us all.

Press Reactions
Here are some samples of the positive ones, but just browse twitter to find the many negative-sigh.
-Hunts the same meaty game as 'Force Majeure' and further twists the knife. Film Stage, USA
-The Square from Ruben Ostlund is SUPERB. Witty, mischievous and completely skewers the so-called metropolitan elite. Loved it. Katherine Butler, UK
-Still chewing over Ruben Ostlund's THE SQUARE. Brimful of innovation; the best sequences I've seen, but doesn't exactly coalesce. Nick James-Sight&Sound, UK
-Ruben Östlund takes dead aim at art world pomposity in his #Cannes70 competition film-Little White Lies, UK
-Ruben Ostlund's THE SQUARE, or LO, AND I AM BECOME CLICKBAIT: THE MOTION PICTURE. Hilarious, terrifying. Maybe too long, but still: wow. Bilge Ebiri-Villlage Voice, USA
-Smart, Sharp, Deliciously Uncomfortable. The Playlist, USA

Regarding the Cannes Soundtrack Award this was said today.
Jury Prize in 2014 for Snow Therapy, this year Ruben Ostlund accedes to the official competition with The Square, a powerful criticism of our society, its contradictions and its cowardice.
Film has various artists but Andreas Franck is the audio engineer.

Un Certain Regard

Las Hijas de Abril (April's Daughter) by Michel Franco
Not crazy about Franco's films but will not deny that having Emma Suarez in the lead makes film to go to a different stage plus the best is film is Spanish, director's mother-tongue. I'm curious to see if film is as good as what press reactions in Spanish think it is.  By the way, film opens on June 30th in Mexico.

Press Reactions
-Menudo sexy thriller "Las hijas de Abril" de Michel Franco con gran Emma Suarez. Una sorpresa intensa de pasiones enfermizas. Nacho Gonzalo, Madrid
-Gran ovació a la sorprenent "Las hijas de Abril" de M. Franco. E. Suárez en un dels papers més cruels de la seva carrera. Geni Lozano, Barcelona
-Another quietly menacing portrait of individual strangeness from Michel Franco. Emma Suarez is outstanding. Martyn Conterio, UK
-precisely constructed mother-daughter sunlit melodrama APRIL'S DAUGHTERS is a little too monstrous at times. Nick James-Sight&Sound, UK

Wind River by Taylor Sheridan
This is the kind of movie that doesn't need a festival promotion but already been in Sundance and now in Cannes gives film a push among cinephiles more than among general audiences.  Usually this is the type of film that watch for entertainment purposes but do not mind at all Cannes endorsement as makes me think that perhaps will enjoy film as a cinematic experience.

A quiet film in all the Cannes noise but thanks to the two Hollywood stars it's getting attention in the photocall and the movie lunch event.  Good, as most films in this section tend to pass quietly into Cannes craziness.

路过未来 Lu Guo Wei Lai (Walking Past The Future) by Li Ruijun
This is the best example of films that I could tend to ignore but when go in-depth, become must-be-seen for me. Lucky French people as MK2 already acquired rights for France but no news about the rest of the world, sigh.

Not much familiar with director but story and press reactions made think about Jia Zhang-ke films, which obviously rises my expectations, especially because seems film also uses Jia's trademark coldish visuals.  Among the interesting reactions there is one that calls film "a powerful exploration of the cruelty of capitalism. Affecting, with great ending".

Special Screenings

Come Swim by Kristen Stewart
Me, like many in the world, are waiting to see Stewart's directorial debut. Press went crazy with long lines to see short and press reactions to her interviews at press junkets are positive, even from not-always-nice critics.

Stewart is driving internet crazy with her red carpet photos but her photos from press junkets are perhaps more interesting.  Not much has been said about her short film, but then who cares! (lol)  Will watch short no matter what critics say. Forgot short was at Sundance so many have already written reviews and yes, they're positive.

Some Press Reactions
-Avec #ComeSwim, #KristenStewart signe un court métrage torturé, véritable cauchemar frénétique et ésotérique. Surprenant. Dom Maury Lasmartres, France.

Director, her actor, her producer and Thierry Fremaux before the screening of Come Swim

Today also in the Special Screenings section, Promised Land by Eugene Jarecki and Le Vénérable W. (The Venerable W.) by Barbet Schroeder.

Cannes Classics
-Today Clint Eastwood will introduce his film Unforgiving, presented in a 4K remastered version by Warner on the ocassion of its 25th anniversary; tomorrow Eastwood will inaugurate the 70th Anniversary Masterclass .
-Also today, A River Runs Through It by Robert Redford.

Cinéma de la plage: Saturday Night Fever by John Badham

Quinzaine des Réalisateurs
Ôtez-moi d'un doute (Just to Be Sure) by Carine Tardieu
Another must-be-seen film for me because cast as lead is none other than Cécile de France and after reading some reactions my expectations were risen a little.

Today also the screening of The Rider by Chloé Zhao and Alive in France by Abel Ferrara.

Semaine de la Critique
Today Petit Paysan by Hubert Charuel and Tehran Taboo by Ali Soozandeh, which is the first-ever animated film in this section.  Both gathered positive reactions but is the animated film the one that was called "Cannes Hidden Gem" by THR.

-Congratulations to Swiss Films Pavillion for winning the Grand Prix Design Award.  The award was presented by Pierre Lescurre.
-After two days of competition, French critics have in top of their ranking, Loveless by Andrey Zvyagintsev.  Most unusual is the fact that British critics have the same film on top; only American press seems to be leaning to other more conventional American cinema, like Wonderstruck by Todd Haynes.  But it's early, scale will movie.  Betting odds still have Haneke in first place as of today, but Beats Per Minute went up to the second place, downloading Loveless to third.  Well, seen the latest Palmometre from French critics and 120 Battements par minute has taken the lead as of today.
-Salle Debussy was evacuated after security situation. Film press screening was Le Redoutable by Hazanavisius.  After a while everything went back to normal, no one was harmed and no one protested ...

Irreverent News
-Aish is allover the net with many incredibly beautiful photos from last night and this morning.  It's the first year before her retirement to motherhood, that she really looks like having a "come back".  She's in Cannes to present a restored version of outstanding Devdas as well as to work as L'Oreal spokesperson.
-Today's best tweet reads "So many mistakes and screening disasters at #Cannes2017, you'd think PriceWaterhouseCoopers opened a branch on the Croisette". Hilarious!
-For those who wonder why Rihanna is in Cannes at a cinema event, let me remind you that since 2012 Battleship, she has been doing movies; her latest and perhaps more visible film will be 2018 Ocean's Eight along Cate Blanchett, Sandra Bullock, Anne Hathaway and more. So, she's trying and perhaps IF she learns to act, she could make it.
-Today has been a very intense lesbian-interest day in Cannes as a few of out-of-the-closet women have walked the red carpet.  Was good for real life but not good for lesbian-interest cinema, sigh.


Isabelle Huppert at last night Chopard event where Rihanna and Bruno Mars performed

Master filmmaker Michael Haneke is in Cannes!!!

Taken with iphone - Beautiful photo.

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