On Wednesday 3 June at 6:00pm, Pierre Lescure and Thierry Frémaux have announced the line-up of the 73rd edition of the Festival de Cannes, live from the UGC Normandie in Paris.
For the occasion, Thierry Frémaux, the Festival’s General Delegate, has unveileiled the 2020’s Official Selection, comprising fifty-six films to be accompanied by the Festival for their release in cinemas and screenings at certain festivals.
This year’s Selection marks a shift away from the Festival de Cannes’ traditional structure, and is divided into six categories:
- The “faithful”, directors who have been included in an Official Selection before,
- The newcomers, included in the Official Selection for their very first time,
- The first features, in an extension of the Festival de Cannes’ trademark passion for unearthing new talent,
- Three documentary films, a genre that has been represented in Official Selection for two decades now,
- Five comedy films, a genre that remains under-represented at Cannes,
- Four animated films: from France, Japan, Denmark and the United States.
The short notes were written by the members of the Selection Committee.
Check out the Cannes 2020 films !
(or at least selected once before)
THE FRENCH DISPATCH by Wes Anderson (USA) – 1h43
In The French Dispatch, shot in Angoulême and featuring an extremely international cast (Frances McDormand, Léa Seydoux, Bill Murray, Mathieu Amalric, Benicio del Toro, etc.), Wes Anderson offers up a work of art comprised of a series of extraordinary miniatures, assembled in such a way as to form an unprecedented whole in the history of cinema. An ode to the power of journalism, this film is a continuation of Wes Anderson’s invaluable and unpredictable style.
Production : INDIAN PAINTBRUSH PRODUCTIONS / AMERICAN EMPIRICAL PICTURES (United Kingdom/France/Germany) – International Sales : FOX SEARCHLIGHT PICTURES – French Distribution : THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY
ÉTÉ 85 by François Ozon (France) – 1h40
A story of friendship and love, or perhaps the opposite, between two boys in the mid-eighties at a seaside resort in Normandy. A dark, brooding tale of passion. Ozon plays around with genres in a film that upholds his inimitable style, in which staging is everything. The original soundtrack sees Bananarama and The Cure make their comeback. This will be the first Official Selection film to be released in cinemas on 14 July 2020.
Production : MANDARIN (France) – International Sales : PLAYTIME – French Distribution : DIAPHANA
ASA GA KURU (True Mothers) by Naomi Kawase (Japan) – 2h20
Naomi Kawase’s new film weaves a complex tale of adoption and motherhood, shot with purposeful clarity and transparency, and lashings of humility. The director’s impressionistic, sensuous style is on full display here in her inserts of the wind and other snapshots of the landscape in which her characters are embedded. A humanistic telling of a poignant story.
Production : KINO FILMS CO (Japan) – International Sales : PLAYTIME – French Distribution : HAUT ET COURT
LOVERS ROCK by Steve McQueen (United Kingdom) – 1h08
A flirty film constructed like an epic trance, featuring slow-burning desire set to music in Swinging Sixties London in an antithesis of social distancing measures. The perfect film for easing out of lockdown.
Production : TURBINE STUDIOS LIMITED (United Kingdom) – International Sales : TURBINE STUDIOS LIMITED
MANGROVE by Steve McQueen (United Kingdom) – 2h04
Steve McQueen’s second Official Selection offering this year. The director made his Cannes début with Hunger (Caméra d’Or 2008) and is now back in Competition. Mangrove is the story of Notting Hill’s Caribbean locals and their fight for respect in the face of the police harassment that has been ongoing for years. The Mangrove Nine trial is told with grace by a cast of extraordinary actors and a camera that delves deep behind the scenes in a tale that has echoes in contemporary racial tensions.
Production : TURBINE STUDIOS LIMITED (United Kingdom) – International Sales : TURBINE STUDIOS LIMITED
DRUK (Another Round) by Thomas Vinterberg – (Denmark) – 1h55
Druk (meaning ‘drunk’ and a little something more, according to the director), examines the fascination men in their fifties have with alcohol – and the mid-life identity crisis that can see them put the wine bottle over evenings spent with family. Politically incorrect and upsetting, whichever way you look at it. Druk embodies the full Vinterberg effect, his ease in building mood and an atmosphere of proximity and friendship, the care and attention he pours into his broken characters. Expect an exceptional line-up: Mads Mikkelsen, Maria Bonnevie and Thomas Bo Larsen, to name but a few.
Production : ZENTROPA (Denmark/Sweden/Netherlands) – International Sales : TRUSTNORDISK – French Distribution : HAUT ET COURT
ADN (DNA) by Maïwenn (France / Algeria) – 1h30
After Polisse, winner of the Jury Prize in 2011, and Mon Roi, which garnered the Best Actress Award for Emmanuelle Bercot’s performance in 2015, Maïwenn is back in the Official Selection. This time, she evokes, not without humour, the toxic heritage of her parents and her Algerian roots, through the loss of her beloved grandfather, which triggers in her a need to get closer to Algeria. A maelstrom of tenderness and violence in which she plays herself, with Fanny Ardant as her mother, Marine Vacth as her sister and Louis Garrel as her best friend.
Production : WHY NOT PRODUCTIONS (France) – Ventes : WILD BUNCH INTERNATIONAL
LAST WORDS by Jonathan Nossiter (USA) – 2h06
Last Words presents film as the start and end of the world, with Harold Lloyd, Toto, Anna Magnani and Louis Lumière taking their rightful place in eternity. Having first landed in Competition with Mondovino, Signs and Wonder director Jonathan Nossiter had no idea just how relevant his film and the notion of cinema and survival would become in the current climate and pandemic. A heart-stopping cast: Nick Nolte, Charlotte Rampling, Alba Rohrwacher and Stellan Skarsgård.
Production : STEMAL (Italy/France) – International Sales : THE PARTY FILMS – French Distribution : JOUR2FÊTE
HEAVEN: TO THE LAND OF HAPPINESS by IM Sang-Soo (South Korea) – 1h40
Im Sang-soo is unafraid of poor taste, and even goes as far as to play on it. A buddy movie in which the actors, including (Cannes!) veteran Min-sik Choi, enchant in a screenplay packed full of twists and turns: an entertaining film that Im Sang-soo injects with a little slapstick style. An examination of a country the director deems overly materialistic and all too often soulless, in which Im Sang-soo’s customary deadpan humour is rolled out with ease.
Production : HIVE MEDIA CORP (South Korea) – International Sales : FINECUT
EL OLVIDO QUE SEREMOS (Forgotten we’ll be) by Fernando Trueba (Spain) – 2h16
An historical epic shot in Colombia by Spanish filmmaker Fernando Trueba, who won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film for Belle Époque in 1994. Adapted for the screen based on Héctor Abad Faciolince’s El olvido que seremos (Forgotten We’ll Be, published by Gallimard in France), the present here is shot in black and white, while the past is infused with colour. The film is the story of childhood’s paradise lost, and the nightmare of a country crippled by violence, where families are torn apart. A child’s vision of his much loved and loving father is well served by Javier Cámara’s masterful performance as a medical authority and father figure. El olvido que seremos (Forgotten We’ll Be) was inspired by a sonnet by Jose Luis Borges.
Production : CARACOL TELEVISION (Colombia) – International Sales : FILM FACTORY ENTERTAINMENT
PENINSULA by YEON Sang-Ho (South Korea) – 1h54
Sang-Ho Yeon is a deft hand in the art of weaving heart-rending relationships between characters – even as they fight off a zombie attack! After the sensational Train to Busan, the South Korean master of genre film is back with a highly inventive, fast-paced offering. Peninsula is an artful and idiosyncratic blend of John Carpenter-style science-fiction and South Korea’s very own walking dead.
Production : REDPETER FILMS (South Korea) – International Sales : CONTENTS PANDA – French Distribution : ARP SELECTION
IN THE DUSK (Au crépuscule) by Sharunas BARTAS (Lituania) – 2h06
A young man in a Lithuanian village at the close of World War II struggles under the USSR’s grip over his country. How does one resist oppression? Lithuanian filmmaker Sharunas Bartas tackles this historical topic as he explores the soul of a nation, and the spirit of a people. In it, Bartas questions how a teenager might form a sense of self in the midst of major national conflict, and brings to light the deep imprints left by one people’s dominance over another. A threatening, foreboding film underpinned by a cruelly steady hand, In the Dusk (Au crépuscule) is an incredibly contemporary snapshot that serves as a perfect mirror image of the world we live in today. Highly relevant.
Production : STUDIJA KINEMA/KINOELEKTRON (Lituania/France/Czech Republic/Serbia/Portuguese/Latvia) – Ventes : LUXBOX – Distribution France : SHELLAC FILMS
DES HOMMES (Home Front) by Lucas BELVAUX – (Belgium) – 1h40
This eleventh feature film by Lucas Belvaux, is an adaptation of Laurent Mauvignier’s eponymous novel. The story of veterans of the Algerian war whose past comes back to haunt them forty years later. Set in a small village where everyone knows each other, the film captures the leaden blanket of silence that fell on France after the “war that shall not be named”, in a flashback narration guided by the memory of Gérard Depardieu, Catherine Frot and Jean-Pierre Darroussin.
Production : SYNECDOCHE (France/Belgium) – International Sales : THE PARTY FILM SALES – French Distribution : AD VITAM
THE REAL THING by Kôji Fukada (Japan) – 3h48
Undoubtedly one of Fukada’s best to date, after the director’s first appearance at Un Certain Regard (Harmonium), and one of this year’s most moving works. Four hours steeped in obsessive, thwarted love, destiny that clings on for dear life, an epic emotional fragility, all brought to life by mesmerising actors (Japan’s pool of incredible talent seems endless) – and a filmmaker deeply inspired by the stories he tells. Cannes is witnessing the emergence of an up-and-coming generation of Japanese filmmakers, from Hamaguchi to Fukada, all of whom follow in the footsteps of the great ‘K-list’ contemporaries: Kore-eda, Kurosawa (Kiyoshi) and Kawase. One of the Official Selection’s longest feature films, in a list that is shorter than usual this year.
Production : NAGOYA TV (Japan) – International Sales : NAGOYA TV
PASSION SIMPLE by Danielle Arbid (Lebanon) – 1h36
A gripping adaptation of French writer Annie Ernaux’s best-selling novel, adapted for the screen by Lebanese filmmaker Danielle Arbid. The film crafts a portrait of the addictive relationship between a mysterious Russian diplomat and a mother, with the latter’s psyche gradually dissolving as she waits for a man with whom she shares nothing in common. With Laetitia Dosch, who starred in 2017’s Caméra d’or-winning Montparnasse Bienvenue (Jeune Femme) by Leonor Serraille, and ballet dancer Sergei Polunin.
Production : LES FILMS PELLÉAS (France/Belgium) – International Sales : PYRAMIDE INTERNATIONAL – French Distribution : PYRAMIDE DISTRIBUTION
A GOOD MAN by Marie Castille Mention-Schaar (France) – 1h47
A love story that transcends gender. Her and him, him and her, her and her – who cares? What matters is to simply love. Marie-Castille Mention-Schaar makes her début in the Official Selection, turning her razor-sharp gaze to the contemporary world and unapologetically ushering the debate onto the screen. A film in which fiction is used to translate reality, set to be a hot topic for discussion.
Production : WILLOW FILMS (France) – International Sales : PYRAMIDE INTERNATIONAL – French Distribution : PYRAMIDE DISTRIBUTION
LES CHOSES QU’ON DIT, LES CHOSES QU’ON FAIT by Emmanuel Mouret (France) – 2h
Love stories and tales of chance, a time to live and a time to love, beating hearts and weeping eyes: Emmanuel Mouret continues his exploration of all things tender and loving, throwing heart, soul and passion into the subject. The actors here are shown off at their very best: Vincent Macaigne, Camélia Jordana, Niels Schneider, Émilie Dequenne, Je
anna Thiam, Guillaume Gouix.
Production : MOBY DICK FILMS (France) – International Sales : ELLE DRIVER – French Distribution : PYRAMIDE DISTRIBUTION
SOUAD by Ayten Amin (Egypt) – 1h30
Fluid, seamless, up-close-and-personal camera work in a moving portrait of Egypt’s youth. Ayten Amin carefully builds a precious world where local tradition and universal hope are fused. Here, young girls dream, hope to please and seduce, aspire to be loved, to wear make-up, to be born into the world. In sumptuous Alexandria, all of life and the sounds of the city can be heard outside, juxtaposed against the silences of the heroine and director. Following in the footsteps of Yomeddine by A.B. Shawky and Mohamed Diab’s work, proof if ever more was needed of the dynamic energy and vitality of the young up-and-coming Egyptian scene.
Production : VIVID REELS (Egypt/Tunisia)
LIMBO by Ben Sharrock (United Kingdom) – 1h53
Scottish filmmaker Ben Sharrock’s second film turns its attentions to the destiny awaiting the refugees that wait for asylum on a Scottish island. Sad and melancholic, but often very funny in parts too, their portraits are told in an impressive style reminiscent of Roy Andersson, Ulrich Seidl and Rüben Östlund. The second film from British writer and director Ben Sharrock.
Production : CARAVAN CINEMA LTD (United Kingdom) – International Sales: PROTAGONIST PICTURES
ROUGE (Red Soil) by Farid Bentoumi (France) – 1h26
Farid Bentoumi’s second film after his comedy Good Luck Algeria. This time, the filmmaker focuses on a health and safety scandal: toxic waste that leaks out of a chemical plant, the infamous ‘red soil’ or ‘red mud’. Zita Hanrot dazzles in the role of occupational nurse and whistle-blower, forming a powerhouse father/daughter duo with heartfelt union worker Sami Bouajila, who prefers to the run the risk of cancer rather than unemployment, and Céline Sallette, who has just finished her first short film for the ADAMI.
Production : LES FILMS VELVET (France) – International Sales : WTFILMS – French Distribution : AD VITAM
SWEAT by Magnus Von Horn (Poland) – 1h40
Swedish filmmaker Magnus von Horn’s second film after The Here After, seen at 2015’s Director’s Fortnight, and a heart-stopping portrait of a Polish influencer and fitness coach. A hugely contemporary film on this new brand of loneliness in the age of social media.
Production : LAVA FILMS (Poland/Sweden) – International Sales : NEW EUROPE FILM SALES
TEDDY by Ludovic et Zoran Boukherma (France) – 1h28
We loved the Boukherma brothers’ first feature film, Willy 1er, which was selected by the ACID in 2016. Now, the pair is back, this time with a werewolf movie transposed into their natural, ultra-stylistic “Grolandish” atmosphere. The title role is played by up-and-coming actor Anthony Bajon who, alongside Niels Schneider and Vincent Macaigne, is a name we’ve been seeing everywhere in this year’s films. This year also sees The Jokers Films back in the Official Selection after 2019’s Palme d’Or-winning Parasite.
Production : BAXTER FILMS (France) – International Sales : WTFILMS – French Distribution : THE JOKERS FILMS
FEBRUARY (Février) by Kamen Kalev (Bulgaria) – 2h05
For his latest film, Bulgarian filmmaker Kamen Kalev paints a portrait of an individual from childhood to adulthood. To do so, the director chooses to step away from the spectacular and the trappings of modern life, preferring instead to capture external, eternal life with unbelievable surety: a rural landscape, and life at sea, where words carry no weight. A masterpiece and journey of exploration.
Production : KORO FILMS (Bulgaria) – French Distribution : UFO DISTRIBUTION
AMMONITE by Francis Lee (United Kingdom) – 2h
A mid-19th-century British love story and scientific vignette, starring Kate Winslet and Saoirse Ronan. A film brimming with contrast, in which cold, inert, dusty fossils bring unbridled passion to life between two women, one of whom is Mary Anning, an English palaeontologist who revolutionised the field through sheer determination. A smart, novelistic film.
Production : SEE-SAW FILMS (United Kingdom) – International Sales : CROSS CITY FILMS – French Distribution : PYRAMIDE DISTRIBUTION
UN MÉDECIN DE NUIT by Elie Wajeman (France) – 1h40
Elie Wajeman’s third film draws viewers to a back-seat position as the camera follows a Parisian doctor on call after dark to heal drug addicts on comedowns and lonely souls in the throes of panic attacks. Vincent Macaigne was everywhere this year in the French Selection line-up, and is magnificent as this ‘patron saint of the broken’, whose break-neck manoeuvres behind the wheel remind us of Harvey Keitel in Abel Ferrara’s Bad Lieutenant.
Production : PARTIZAN FILMS (France) – International Sales : BE FOR FILMS – French Distribution : DIAPHANA DISTRIBUTION
ENFANT TERRIBLE by Oskar Roehler (Germany) – 2h14
A personal biopic about the intense short life of Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Enfant terrible is a film-exploit. Oscar Roelher, who has always been inspired by unusual characters, explores Fassbinder’s uncontrollable personality: by turns brilliant, excessive, cruel, and tender. He delivers a work with clear-cut visual perspectives and skilfully calculated narrative choices, just like in the theatre scenes Fassbinder loved so much. What remains is the sensation of plunging into the heart of a life and a soul that tormented all those who approached him, and the feeling that it was time to re-examine a genius in a permanent state of creation.
Production : BAVARIA FILMPRODUKTION (Germany) – International Sales : PICTURE TREE INTERNATIONAL
NADIA, BUTTERFLY by Pascal Plante (Canada) – 1h46
In this second film by Pascal Plante, a former top-level swimmer, he trains his camera on a champion swimmer in early retirement. A melancholy film that looks at what comes next, at what happens to the athletes once they’ve hung up their swimming trunks. The main role is played by a Quebec swimmer and bronze medallist in the Rio Olympics, Katerine Savard, who carries the film on her shoulders in every sense of the word.
Production : NEMESIS FILMS (Canada) – International Sales : WAZABI FILMS
HERE WE ARE by Nir Bergman (Israel) – 1h34
Aharon is in his fifties, but above all he is the father of Uri, an autistic teenager. The father and son understand each other because they love each other, but how far can a father go if he really loves his son? Nir Bergman trains his camera on two men, following a magical duet and offering up a poignant melodrama whose reference is Chaplin’s The Kid. Here we are is thus an escape film, which opts for permanent inventiveness over overwhelming fatality. With this moving portrait of an autistic man, the filmmaker constructs a narrative that is not without drama and also shows that the best can happen. Surprising, lively, moving, Here we are is a father’s film and a son’s film. And the balance it maintains leads us to a state of joy.
Production : SPIRO FILMS (Israel) – International Sales : MK2 FILMS
AN OMNIBUS FILM
SEPTET: THE STORY OF HONG KONG by Ann Hui, Johnnie TO, Tsui Hark, Sammo Hung, Yuen Woo-Ping, Ringo Lam et Patrick Tam Kar-ming (Hong Kong) – 1h53
As everyone knows, Hong Kong has been going through extraordinary, difficult and violent times in recent years. Johnnie To asked six Hong Kong filmmakers (Ringo Lam, Tsui Hark, Yuen Woo-ping, Sammo Hung, Patrick Tam Kar-ming and Ann Hui) to join him in telling a story in which they each share both childhood memories and their visions of Hong Kong. And, of course, by looking back at the past of these filmmakers, we project ourselves into the uncertain future of Hong Kong. So it was now or never to show this sketch film.
Production : MILKYWAY IMAGE (Hong Kong) – International Sales : MEDIA ASIA DISTRIBUTION
THE FIRST FEATURES
FALLING by Viggo Mortensen (USA) – 1h52
First film by the actor Viggo Mortensen, Falling plunges us headlong into the world of family psyche. The past mingles unceasingly with the present, the figure of a terrible and furious father, with the incredulous and determined face of a son who has to suck it up. Mortensen’s story is a universal cinematic story, that’s shot through with secret sensations. Imbued with nature and the heart of rural America, Falling is an original and strong work, as is often the case with films by actors, marking a very personal journey for the poet and photographer Viggo Mortensen. With David Cronenberg (they made History of Violence together) as a guest-star.
Production : PERCEVAL PICTURES (Canada/United Kingdom /Danemark) – International Sales : HANWAY FILMS – French Distribution : METROPOLITAN FILMEXPORT
PLEASURE by Ninja Thyberg (Sweden) – 1h45
The first film by Ninja Thyberg, a Swedish director whose short film, also entitled Pleasure, was presented at La Semaine de la Critique in 2013. Through the hard-hitting portrait of a young Swedish woman who sets out to become a porn star in the United States, it offers a female behind-the-scenes perspective on a macho world.
Production : PLATTFORM PRODUKTION (Sweden/Netherlands/France) – International Sales : VERSATILE
SLALOM by Charlène Favier (France) – 1h32
A film about the moment when everything can go wrong between a trainer/Pygmalion character and his protégée, a young alpine skiing hopeful. A first film shot in Les Arcs in the Savoie region of France where the self-taught director was born, which captures the mountains superbly. With Noée Abita, revealed in Léa Mysius’ Ava, as the sportswoman and Jérémie Rénier as the coach.
Production : MILLE ET UNE PRODUCTIONS (France) – International Sales : THE PARTY FILM INTERNATIONAL SALES – French Distribution : JOUR2FÊTE
CASA DE ANTIGUIDADES (Memory House) by Joao Paulo Miranda Maria (Brazil) – 1h27
Cristovam, a loner working in rural Brazil for a former Austrian colonist, lives a parallel life. As an accepting person, whose ancestors have always been from that land, it is without astonishment that he discovers an abandoned place whose objects carry within them the magical memory of his country. Casa de antiguidades is one of those reconciliatory films that blasts open the limits by paradoxically exposing Brazilian social inequalities. Fantasy rubs shoulders with the most trivial reality, the past regains its rights at the heart of the present. Joao Paulo Miranda Maria constructs rich a work featuring the many Brazils whose common denominator is a light and a landscape that’s superbly captured here.
Production : BEBOSSA (Brazil) / MANEKI FILMS (France)
BROKEN KEYS (Fausse note) by Jimmy Keyrouz (Lebanon) – 1h30
A work of denunciation, in this case of radical Islamism in the time of ISIS, Broken Keys stands out for its classicism and the way it intertwines stories great and small. The music acts as a counterpoint to the horrors of the world in this first film – a work shot through with humanity – by Lebanese director Jimmy Keyrouz.
Production : EZEKIEL (Lebanon)
IBRAHIM by Samir Guesmi (France) – 1h20
The first film by actor Samir Guesmi about a father-son relationship, without stereotypes or clichés. Guesmi has always been an outstanding actor. He is accompanied by the remarkable Abdelrani Bendaher, both shy and obstinate, victim of a sequence of events that he did not set in motion, seeking nothing but happiness for a father increasingly entangled in problems. A film for today’s world.
Production : WHY NOT PRODUCTIONS (France) – International Sales : WILD BUNCH INTERNATIONAL
BEGINNING (Au commencement) by Dea Kulumbegashvili (Georgia) – 2h
This first Georgian film presents a young filmmaker’s perspective on the fossilised society of her country. Dea Kulumbegashvili constructs her story as a hunt, a stalk between a hypnotised prey and accomplished predator. In this story of a young wife, a Jehovah’s Witness, harassed by a young local cop, everything is played out through static sets and a will to survive. A series of impressive debuts.
Production : FIRST PICTURE / O.F.A (Georgia) – International Sales : WILD BUNCH INTERNATIONAL
GAGARINE by Fanny Liatard et Jérémy Trouilh (France) – 1h35
A debut co-directed by Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Trouilh whose short films attracted attention in Clermont Ferrand. The story of a teenager with a predestined first name, Yuri, who grew up in the same city as Gagarin and made it his spaceship, so to speak. It’s a film of resistance since his hero refuses to see this beautifully mixed red-brick block being demolished. For the first time on screen we discover Alséni Bathily alongside Papicha Lyna Khoudri who stood out last year in Mounia Meddour’s film at Un Certain Regard.
Production : HAUT ET COURT (France) – International Sales : TOTEM FILMS – French Distribution : HAUT ET COURT
16 PRINTEMPS by Suzanne Lindon (France) – 1h13
20 year-old Suzanne Lindon talks about her 16th birthday and seizes the opportunity to create a film that watches a woman blossom. Suzanne recounts, films, plays and dances this intimate and fragile moment that gives rise to both desire and fear. A promising first film with Arnaud Valois, seen at Cannes in 120 BPM (Beats per Minute).
Production : AVENUE B PRODUCTIONS (France) – International Sales : LUXBOX – French Distribution : PANAME DISTRIBUTION
VAURIEN by Peter Dourountzis (France) – 1h35
A social thriller that shows that serial killers can be charming people and even flash the smile of Pierre Deladonchamps. An impressive first film and the first time we see Ophélie Bau again after Mektoub My Love by Abdellatif Kechiche. Peter Dourountzis worked for ten years at an emergency medical care centre in Paris and certainly knows how to capture the erratic daily life of a vagrant.
Production : 10:15 PRODUCTIONS (France) – International Sales : KINOLOGY – French Distribution : REZO FILMS
GARÇON CHIFFON by Nicolas Maury (France) – 1h48
A first film, co-written with Sophie Fillières, by Nicolas Maury, an actor who rose to fame in the series Dix pour Cent and first appeared at Cannes in Yann Gonzalez’s Knife + Heart. He admits that he treated himself to “the role of his life” by playing an actor who, by dint of being jealous to the point of sickness, is about to lose the man he loves. A film full of self-mockery with Nathalie Baye in the role of his mother.
Production : CG CINEMA (France) – International Sales : LES FILMS DU LOSANGE – French Distribution : LES FILMS DU LOSANGE
SI LE VENT TOMBE (Should the Wind Drop) by Nora Martirosyan (Armenia) – 1h40 – Copresented with l’ACID
An amazing debut by an Armenian director who took the Cinefoundation Workshop in 2014, and who manages here to create a permanent tension from almost nothing. A sort of minimalist Desert of the Tartars, with the ever stoic Grégoire Colin in the role of an engineer in charge of deciding on the reopening of the airport of a self-proclaimed Caucasian Republic. A permanent visual inspiration, a journey out of time and out of the ordinary where the filmmakers train their cameras.
Production : SISTER PRODUCTIONS (Armenia/France/Belgium) – International Sales : INDIE INTERNATIONAL SALES – French Distribution : ROUGE DISTRIBUTION
JOHN AND THE HOLE by Pascual Sisto (Spain) – 1h38
An explosive pitch (no spoilers here) for this thriller/”coming of age movie” full of great influences (from Haneke to Gus Van Sant), the first film by a Spanish artist living in New York who specializes in the representation of alternative realities. A film co-written with Nicolás Giacobone, Iñárritu’s loyal Argentinian screenwriter.
Production : MUTRESSA MOVIES (USA)
STRIDING INTO THE WIND (Courir au gré du vent) by WEI Shujun (China) – 2h36
Two young men in a state of complete turmoil and a 4×4 in China. This could be the pitch for this first film by a gifted young filmmaker. But behind this easy formula hides an inventive and unpredictable odyssey as free as the air, with a totally fresh perspective on Chinese cinema. A work unlike any other, as is often the case in the films from a China where cinema matters more than ever.
Production : ALIBABA PICTURES (China)
THE DEATH OF CINEMA AND MY FATHER TOO (La Mort du cinéma et de mon père aussi) by Dani Rosenberg (Israel) – 1h40
First Israeli film. A young filmmaker films the dying pains of his father, himself a filmmaker. It’s all about closeness and distance, the desire to capture every last gesture, not to miss a word.
Production : PARDES FILMS (Israel) – International Sales : FILMS BOUTIQUE – French Distribution: NOUR FILMS
3 DOCUMENTARY FILMS
EN ROUTE POUR LE MILLIARD (Downstream to Kinshasa) by Dieudo Hamadi – (Democratic Republic of Congo) – 1h30
A documentary by the Congolese Dieudo Hamadi who continues his work as a young observer and filmmaker. Hamadi once again trains his camera on the street and follows a group of men in their struggle to obtain what their just rewards from a failing state. With meticulousness and a concern to make everything vibrant, Hamadi offers the viewer the privilege of accompanying his real-life heroes. A magnificent gesture of cinema.
Production : LES FILMS DE L’OEIL SAUVAGE (Democratic Republic of Congo/Belgium/France) – International Sales : ANDANA FILMS
THE TRUFFLE HUNTERS by Michael Dweck et Gregory Kershaw (USA) – 1h24
A documentary that sets out in search of the white truffle from Alba, Italy, prized by the great chefs and gleaners who sell it at astronomical prices. Without voice-overs, The Truffle Hunters tells the story of how an ancestral tradition comes face to face with contemporary business, the love between octogenarians and dogs with a sometimes uncertain sense of smell, on a stubborn and insane search – a journey through the heart of the forests of Piedmont. Presented at Sundance and produced by Luca Guadagnino.
Production : GO GIGI GO PRODUCTIONS LLC (Italia/USA/Greece) – Distribution France : SONY PICTURES RELEASING
9 JOURS A RAQQA by Xavier de Lauzanne – (France) – 1h30
A documentary about an extraordinary woman, Leïla Mustapha, the Kurdish mayor of the former Islamic State capital, a civil engineer in charge of the reconstruction of Raqqa. A rare and intrinsically “feminist” view of Syria.
Production : ALOEST FILMS (France)
5 COMEDY FILMS
ANTOINETTE DANS LES CÉVENNES by Caroline Vignal (France) – 1h35
A hike in the footsteps of Stevenson. Accompanied by her donkey Laure Calamy well wanders off the beaten track. With only her second feature film by Caroline Vignal, in almost 20 years, has directed an anti-love affair comedy based on the theme “the important thing is to travel, not to arrive”. The result is halfway between a Western in the Cévennes and a contemporary tale.
Production : CHAPKA FILMS / LA FILMERIE (France) – International Sales : PLAYTIME – French Distribution : DIAPHANA DISTRIBUTION
LES DEUX ALFRED by Bruno Podalydès (France) – 1h30
The new film by Bruno Podalydès, who has never featured in the Official Selection before, and a great pleasure to see the two brothers, Bruno and Denis, acting together – more often they merely cross paths. Les Deux Alfred is an upbeat but simultaneously moving comedy about characters overwhelmed by the modern world and new technologies, who need to stick together to get by. Sandrine Kiberlain is great in the role of the formidable businesswoman who keeps her cards close to her chest. And thef “parental coming out” scene is already a huge hit with the selection committee.
Production : WHY NOT PRODUCTIONS (France) – French Distribution : UGC DISTRIBUTION
UN TRIOMPHE (The big hit) by Emmanuel Courcol (France) – 1h40
An actor past his best arrives in a prison to give drama lessons to the prisoners. His best laid plans are not necessarily shared by all, but he’s on mission to stage Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot. Prison life, the presence of art, the existence of the outside world, an escape through words, Emmanuel Courcol delivers a real prison film with a very successful mix of young actors graced with the presence of veterans of the Comédie Française (Marina Hands, Laurent Stocker).
Production : AGAT FILMS & CIE (France) – International Sales : MK2 FILMS – French Distribution : MEMENTO FILMS DISTRIBUTION
L’ORIGINE DU MONDE by Laurent Lafitte (France) – 1st film
Obviously, L’Origine du monde was a painting, painted by Gustave Courbet in 1966. Then it became a play by Sébastien Thiéry, completely unrelated to the artwork. Now, it’s the first film by Laurent Lafitte, actor, author and now director, still on both sides of the camera. The story of a heartless man, in the true sense of the word, apparently alive. We will say no more so as not to spoil this darkly joyful, funny and bemusing spectacle. The actors are having fun and they are not the only ones: it’s comedy time.
Production : TRESOR FILMS (France) – International Sales : STUDIO CANAL – French Distribution : STUDIO CANAL
LE DISCOURS by Laurent Tirard (France) – 1h27
A new comedy by Laurent Tirard adapted from Fabrice Caro’s novel, about a thirty-something man who has been dumped and awaits a reconciliation SMS during a never-ending family dinner. Laurent Tirard had the excellent idea to give the lead role to Benjamin Lavernhe (from the Comédie Française) who knows how to play the a half-idiot like nobody else. A tender and upbeat film, stylishly written and filmed, which affirms that it is never too late to tell each other the truth. Featuring Sara Giraudeau, who we also see in Elie Wajeman´s A Night Doctor.
Production : LES FILMS SUR MESURE (France) – International Sales : CHARADES – French Distribution : LE PACTE
4 ANIMATED FILMS
AYA TO MAJO (Earwig and the Witch) by Gorô Miyazaki (Japan) – 1h22
An animated film by Gorô Miyazaki, in digital animation and not in the usual manga groove. A contrast with the cinema of his father, the great Hayao Miyazaki, who participated in the elaboration of this opus, which marks the great return of Ghibli studios to the big screen, following their ubiquitous triumph on the platforms. In this highly original work, we find the narrative influences of children’s tales with their disturbing characters, their determined little heroines and their magical powers. Note that the film is not set in Japan but still speaks the language of Ozu. We leave it as a surprise.
Production : NHK / NHK ENTERPRISES / STUDIO GHIBLI (Japan) – International Sales : WILD BUNCH INTERNATIONAL
FLEE by Jonas Poher Rasmussen (Denmark) – 1h30
This hybrid film uses the power of historical archive images, enhanced by animation and its embodiment of the imagination, to deal with a subject relatively new to cinema: the flight of an Afghan family through Russia to reach Europe. A moving miniature epic.
Production : FINAL CUT FOR REAL / SUN CREATURE STUDIO (Denmark/France/Sweden/Norway) – International Sales : CINEPHIL
JOSEP by Aurel (France) – 1h20 – 1st film
A strong subject and a rare form of animation with the use of jump-cut, alternating still and animated images, a mixture of press drawings, comic strip strokes and paintings: the first film by cartoonist Aurel, based on a screenplay by Robert Guédiguian’s companion, Jean-Louis Milesi, evokes with conviction and poetry a story forgotten by History, that of the Retirada, the exodus to France of refugees from the Spanish Civil War in 1939. The power of line drawing to witness and re-enchant the world: Aurel’s first film is ambitious.
Production : LES FILMS D’ICI (France) – International Sales : THE PARTY FILM SALES – French Distribution : SOPHIE DULAC DISTRIBUTION
SOUL by Pete Docter (USA) – 1h30
The friendship between the Festival de Cannes, Studio Pixar and Pete Docter is not new: together at the opening with Up in 2009, we met again for the out-of-competition presentation of Inside Out in 2015. Since then, Pete Docter has taken over the studio but has lost none of his touch: it’s as a director that returns to the Official Selection with Soul, the story of a music teacher who is a reincarnation… well, not really – but hey, we’re not giving the game away. It’s the first Pixar that takes place in New York. Screenplay by Pete Docter, Mike Jones and Kemp Powers, with a score by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, and it all adds up.
Production : PIXAR ANIMATION STUDIOS (USA) – French Distribution : THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY