Saturday, May 26, 2012

3rd Cannes Queer Palm Award Winners

It is impressive the lack of media coverage that this award received this year, even when Jury president is well-known. Not even the LGTB sites talked about award, but they talked about other movies in the fest. I believe that if organizers don't change their "game plan" the award will simply fade away due to lack of interest.

I know is not easy and that best reference, Berlinale Teddy Award, did not have an easy start, but they made it and now Teddy is a prestigious award recognized by the LGTB community and beyond. But now with all this tech that surrounds us, the Queer Palm should reach faster a credibility plateau; still, after three years of so-so promotion seems that the curve is going down, not up. Also the few comments suggested no interest in the award as "sure" winner was Lawrence Anyways... so on top, the award became predictable as no surprises yes Lawrence Anyways won the award. I love Xavier Dolan's movies but honestly I was hoping that Hors les murs (Beyond the Walls)by David Lambert could win this year. Thus those that shared their predictions surely know more than me how the award works. Sigh.

Anyway, winners are in *BLUE.  Read news here, available only in French.

Is not until today that have a moment to check what's happening with this award and to my surprise I found a new film competing and is none other than Cristian Mungiu's Beyond the Hills that's in the main Competition. To read info at official site about this and the other films go here, available only in French.
---End of Update---

Organizers finally published the Cannes Queer Palm selection for 2012 there are a few feature-length films that could make the competition interesting, but there are not many shorts competing for the first time award. I'm including the info published along with the film announcement but unfortunately there is no info about the specific LGTB interest that each film has, so will try to figure it out and when possible will add it.

Feature Films

Holy Motors, Leos Carax, France
Léos Carax, director of the cult movie The Lovers on a Bridge has never been a filmmaker like the others. One can therefore expect anything from this film, in which stars the gay icon Kylie Minogue, and which could surprise us in many ways with a central character that has multiple identities, sometimes a man and sometimes a woman…

Un Certain Regard
*Laurence Anyways, Xavier Dolan, Canada and France (T)  Queer Palm winner feature film.
The young prodigy of Canadian cinema returns at Un Certain Regard two years after the success of Heartbeats. This time he tells the story of a man, Laurence (Melvis Poupaud) who decides to become a woman and will be helped in the process by his female partner. This two-and-a-half hour film is expected to be released in France on the 18th of July.

Mystery, Lou Ye, China (G)
Marriage and adultery, double life, murder, accident… A great mystery lies on the new film from the director of Spring Fever. But reliable sources indicate that this is a thriller which offers a great deal of secrets and ambiguity! To be followed, then…

Midnight Screenings
愛と誠 Ai To Makoto (The Legend of Love & Sincerity), Takashi Miike, Japan
The Japanese director takes on a genre that is rarely represented at Cannes: musical. The first images of the film let us hope for a joyful and offbeat treatment of the codes of the genre. Wait and see…

Special Screenings
Les Invisibles, Sébastien Lifshitz, France
Sébastien Lifshitz, director of Going south, Open Bodies and Come Undone returns to documentary. He tackles in this film the subject of homosexuality and the old age, focusing on a quartet of witnesses that were born between the two world wars.

Quinzaine des Réalisateurs
Rengaine (Hold Back), Rachid Djaidani, France
In the Paris of today, Dorcy, a young black Christian wants to marry Sabrina, a young girl from Northern Africa. It would be so much easier if Sabrina didn’t have forty brothers and that their marriage did not represent a taboo that is very rooted in their two communities : no marriage between blacks and Arabs. Slimane, the big brother which stands as the guardian of traditions, is going to do whatever he can to oppose this union.

The WE and the I, Michel Gondry, US and UK (G)
In the end of the school year, the students of a high school from the Bronx get on the same bus for a last ride before Summer. The group of noisy and exuberant teenagers with its bullies, victims and lovers, evolves and transforms as the bus gets empty. Relationships then become more and more intimate and disclose the hidden sides of their personalities.

Semaine de la Critique
Augustine, Alice Winocour, France
Paris, winter 1885. At the Pitié -Salpêtriere Hospital, Professor Charcot is studying a mysterious illness : hysteria. Augustine, 19 years old, becomes his favorite guinea pig, the star of his demonstrations of hypnosis. The object of his studies will soon become the object of his desire...

Hors les murs (Beyond the Walls), David Lambert, Belgium, Canada and France (G)
Paulo, a young pianist living an ambivalent life with Anka, meets Ilir, a loner bass player. It’s love at first sight and they start living on love alone. The day Paulo promises to love him for life, Ilir leaves town for a concert, and never comes back…

Peddlers, Vasan Bala, India
A ghost town, Mumbai, inhabited by millions. A lady on a mission, a man living a lie, an aimless drifter. They collide. Some collisions are of consequence, some not, either ways the city moves on.

Noor, Çagla Zencirci and Guillaume Giovanetti, France (T)
Noor wants to be a man and turn the page on his love story. He works in a truck decoration center and knows what he wants : find a woman who accepts him the way he is. Known for his short films between fiction and documentary (Ata, Six, …), the French-Turkish duo presents their first feature film, which focuses on a character coming from the Pakistanis transgender community: the Khursas.

Short Films

Gasp, Eicke Bettinga, Germany (G)

Semaine de la Critique
*Ce n’est pas un film de cow-boys (It’s not a Cowboys Movie), Benjamin Parent, France  Queer Palm winner short film.
O Duplo (Doppelgänger), Juliana Rojas, Brazil
Yeguas y Cotorras (Mares and Parakeets) , Natalia Garagiola, Argentina (L)

To read the 2012 Queer Palm's guide, that includes the selection, go here to download the pdf file. File is in French and English.

I just came from discovering that 7 Dias en la Habana (7 Days in Havana) has a segment, Ritual by Gaspard Noé, that is full Lesbian Interest so it is surprising that film is not included in this selection. Not only is SO hard to have Lesbian Interest films in Cannes but when there is one is skipped from the selection. Hope they fix their list to include this film.

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