One of the most renowned film festivals in the world rolls out the red carpets for its 65th anniversary and this year boasts a programme laden with exemplary global offerings for the independent film fan.
One of the most
renowned film festivals in the world rolls out the red carpets for its 65th
anniversary and this year boasts a programme laden with exemplary global
offerings for the independent film fan.
The 2012 programme sees heavy contribution from the European
industry, with new instalments from A
Prophet’s Jacques Audiard, documentary maker Sergei Loznitsa and veteran director Alain Resnais. Representing
the darker themes often shown at Cannes, Audiard’s entry Rust and Bone follows Marion
Cotillard’s water park employee after she loses her legs to a killer whale.
Moussa Toure’s third feature in 20
years La Pirogue sees a chief
fisherman embark upon a deadly voyage to Spanish territory, and Funny Games director Michael Haneke records an elderly woman
having a stroke in Amour.
The tone could not differ more from the festival’s opening
film Moonsrise Kingdom (Main Picture), one of the
few entries from the US and directed by indie pin up Wes Anderson. Starring usual Anderson line up, Bill Murray and Jason
Schwartzman join Bruce Willis, Edward Norton and Tilda Swinton in a heavily filtered bittersweet romance between two
young campers who run away and are pursued by this quirky band of A listers.
A couple of unlikely tween idols sail over from the West
this year. Robert Pattinson takes
the lead in Cosmopolis, a Manhattan
based account of a young man’s unravelling and with David Cronenberg at the helm raising the bar for the star’s career.
Meanwhile Precious director Lee Daniels draws a chiselled Zac Efron into the investigation of
murder alongside Matthew McConaughey in
Paperboy. Also bearing the stars and stripes is the adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s classic American novel On The Road, starring Sam Riley and Garrett Hedlund as the restless Dean Moriarty.
British films are sparse this year with Ken Loach the only entry so far. The Angel’s Share, starring John
Henshaw and Roger Allam is about
an ex criminal who opens a whisky distillery, and is the first entry by Loach
since he won the Palme D’or with The
Wind That Shakes the Barley.
Festival du film de Cannes was established in 1947 and
included entries from 16 countries. One of the first film festivals to include jury
members from various countries, Cannes introduced a sense of equality that had
yet to be accomplished by its sister events, and to this day is a vital
platform for European cinema and independent films seeking distribution.
The infamous Golden Palm was introduced in 1955, and has
been awarded to the likes of Fellini’s
La Dolce Vita (1960,) Francis Ford
Coppola’s The Conversation, Taxi
Driver, Mike Leigh’s Secrets &
Lies and last year’s winner, Terence
Malick’s Tree of Life.
The festival is separated into several sections; the
official selection, parallel selection and a section organised by external
organisations for the event. The official selection is the main purpose of the
festival, and comprises of “In Competition” a selection of 20 films competing
for the Palme d’Or, “Un Certain Regard.” This year, Andrew Dominik’s Killing Them Softly and John Hillcoat’s Lawless join the programme to compete for the
Palm. Noted for its cultural
contributions in domestic and foreign cinema, “Out of Competition” (speaks for
itself) and the newest contribution to this selection, “Cinéfondation
,” which is a collection of short films contributed from film schools across
The parallel section exists to promote awareness rather than
competition and includes classic entries as well as world cinema and
documentaries. Juries for each section of Cannes are selected prior to each
event and are appointed by the festival’s board of directors based on their
body of work.
The sidebar of the festival enjoys its 51st edition this
year, and will be opened by the latest feature from French indie director Michel Gondry, The We & the I. Other featured films include Kill List director Ben Wheatley’s new film Sightseers
and Rufus Norris’ Broken. This year’s
programme boasts a lot of first time features and will showcase new talent for
With celebrity attendance spreading from indie darlings to
Hollywood’s finest there is something for those for an eye in fashion as well
we as an eye for untapped cinema. With the limited western input this year,
Cannes has laid bare the platform for European cinema to show off its