Falling in Love with Cannes Again


CANNES, France – “Can we start now?”

I suspect the programming committee of the program right now. 2021 Cannes Film Festival He heard the first song in Leos Carax’s “Annette” – an infectious, energetic, fourth-wall-breaking overture that reaches gonzo heights the film will never reach again – its destiny as an opening night movie. “So can we get started?” Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard sing. “Can we start now?” Rather than asking permission for life to begin, as regular attendees of the film, the festival (canceled the 2020 edition) and Cannes know, the community is responding harshly by announcing its intention. The reader has begun.

Written by Carax et al. art-pop duo SparksIt’s a quirk that “Annette” faced a wildly divided reception, but no one was impressed by that first trick. The exciting start of Cannes on Saturday was long overdue, but there could not have been a more hopeful, more unifying moment than the anthem of impatience played in this context. The only possible dissenter is Wes Anderson’s “French DispatchWidely tipped for the coveted slot but turned into an unusually cool reception later in the week (despite the significant cheer I got from it). Presumably, this is what told Anderson, “Let’s get this show on the road!” It will teach you how to add. or “Here we go guys!” The song at the beginning of all future movies.

“Can we start now?” In these warm, confused, happy days of the past, the collective participant was far from being the only earworm curled up in his subconscious. Given that all festivals are kaleidoscopes of moods, genres and tempos, Cannes 2021 was at least partly a musical after all this silence.

I left the Croisette humming “Be My Baby” by Vanessa Paradis For days, after hearing Nadav Lapid’s brilliant, deterrent words used with such jagged, dissonant effectAhed’s Knee” I jumped out of Joanna Hogg “Memorial Part II” – definitely the best film of the festival not actually at the festival, but part of the separate Directors’ Fortnight – up to the genres of Eurythmics “Must Be An Angel” which is used for such a transcendent effect. After being thoroughly enthralled by Juho Kuosmanen’s romance with strangers on the train, I disturbed my housemates with shower renditions of Desireless’s 80s Euro megahit “Voyage Voyage.” “Compartment Number 6.” Only ‘N Sync’s heroically pointless “Bye Bye Bye” was displaced by a recurring theme in Sean Baker’s awesome, deceptively limp limbs, to my disappointment and unsuspecting ears. “Red Rocket.”

Because I don’t like comic operettas, I donated my version of Gilbert and Sullivan singalong set in Justin Kurzel’s overly tense and disturbing mass shooting true story, “Nitram.” Nor did I try to emulate the budding Moroccan rap stars of Nabil Ayouch’s chirpy, not tight enough, gritty hip-hop musical.Casablanca Beats”, so much for the relaxation of the rap genre.

But Cannes wasn’t all about song and dance; He also did a good line in the body horror movie. And a press crew that is constantly aware of the dictates of biology, ideally this more mundane, grayer, more obscene element, due to all the drooling into tiny tubes and all the brain-tickling nose swabs we endured during our mandatory 48-hour coronavirus tests. We achieved this most clearly with the widely acclaimed, fervently unbalanced Kirill Serebrennikov. “Petrov Flu” A wildly inventive head trip that plays like a post-Soviet “Ulysses” has been made so alive by viral contagion that you wish you had a few more masks to watch.

On a less disturbing, far more obscene note, Paul Verhoeven’s winkingly worthless and gruesome nunsploitation drama “Benedetta” Starring Virginie Efira as a 17th-century Italian nun who is the subject of the Roman Catholic Church’s sole lesbian case, the film duly presents some of the flesh’s ordeals alongside significantly more satisfying scenes.

But aside from the memorable nasty use that Benedetta’s lover found for the small, good, dildo statue of the Virgin Mary, the moment from this movie that struck me the most was the relatively solemn line. “Your body is your worst enemy,” says Benedetta, when she came to the convent as a child and had to replace her fine silks with a sizzling sackcloth shift. “It is best not to feel at home in it.” This terrible advice reminds me of Tatiana Huezo’s sublime “Prayers for the stolenA film where mothers in a cartel-controlled Mexican village make their teenage daughters look childlike with short haircuts and loose clothing to protect their teenage daughters from the ever-present specter of kidnapping and rape.

But the nun’s words also pointed to a fundamental skill that many of us in Cannes have suddenly had to relearn: to be outside, in a body, in the world amid all the dangers. After about 18 months of just walking between the sofa and the fridge, I’ve heard of four separate cases where bodies unaccustomed to the physical demands of the festival betray their owners. A toe was broken, a kneecap ligament was lost, an arch fell off, and an ankle was sprained – this is my latest news because the ankle was mine. The day before the festival kicked off, I fell to the ground, gleefully walking with my nose on my phone, not noticing a crack in Cannes’ notoriously bumpy pavement. Sean Penn’s “Flag Day” it happens a few days later.

While many of us grapple with our own body fears, she introduced the subgenre of childbirth in “Benedetta,” the movie genre in which a random character pulls a heavy breast from her corset and squirts milk in Charlotte Rampling’s eye contemptuously. fear. The most surprising Cannes example was a documentary: Andrea Arnold’s “The Cow” focuses on Luma, a handsome Holstein Friesian who becomes permanently pregnant and therefore breastfeeding at an English dairy. But as a theme, that vein of horror is also reflected in Valdimar Johannsson’s classy, ​​witty Icelandic tale. “Lamb,” where a mute couple on a remote farm, a sheep and a malevolent mythical entity raise their surprisingly adorable hybrid offspring. And the subgenre finally found its essence – although here it is not milk expressed by the breast, but motor oil – in Julia Ducournau’s surprisingly daring, hyperstyle “Titane”, winner of the Palme d’Or, by far the most impressive daring choice for this grand prize in recent history.

Sometimes Cannes was a fast moving car through which we could poke our heads and shout for joy.set offDelightful debut introducing director Panah Panahi, son of respected Iranian auteur Jafar Panahi. Sometimes it was a road movie in a different order, like Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s gracefully observed, gently important connecting drama. “Drive my car,” It’s a three-hour and no more than one-minute film to reveal a relationship built on secrets hesitantly exchanged during a daily journey.

In short, during the European Championship final, especially between the British and Italian participants, Cannes became a sports documentary.

But mostly, Joachim Trier’s radiant, beloved “worst person in the world“Cannes 2021 was a beautiful, flawed romance for me. There is a moment in the movie when Julie (deserving Renate Reinsve, the Cannes best actress award winner) decides not to cheat on her boyfriend, but becomes deeply attracted to a stranger she just met at a party and plays an “all-out” game with him. They tell their deepest secrets. They watch each other pee. And they share a cigarette in the garden at dawn, one blowing smoke into the other’s mouth in slow motion, giving the festival its sexiest scene, and sighing longingly for a time when such an act would not be colored by violation. , when no participant thought of the words “airborne transmission”.

Cannes in time of corona is also Cannes before corona and Cannes after corona because it is about cinema, the medium that I still love for its ability to push me through recreated pasts and throw me into imaginary futures. And sometimes, wrapping me right in the moment, letting me breathe in a smokey image and letting me feel it breathe back in.

This was an event for so long that no one dared to fully believe it, and now it’s over. We took a break from our lives for 12 days, and we’ve seen surprisingly despite sprained ankles, face-to-face conversations with no mute buttons, and the moment-to-moment uncertainty that can become an ongoing feature of life. Something of the old rhythm remains, something of the old pleasure is waiting to be rediscovered.

Can we start now? I think – I hope – we can.


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