FESTIVALS

CANNES FESTIVAL, “Knife + Heart”

GIALLO / SLASHER
Vanessa Paradis, Kate Moran and Nicolas Maury
Directed by Yann Gonzalez

“Knife + Heart” is a surrealistic and zany whodunit slasher inspired by the Italian giallo genre and directed by French director Yann Gonzalez. This is his first film in the official selection. In 2013 he presented “Les Rencontres D’Après Minuit” at Critics Week, one of the parallel sections at the Cannes Festival. “Knife+Heart” is a candidate for a Palme D’Or. Did you know? Anthony Gonzalez, ... more >

CANNES FESTIVAL, “Cafarnaúm,” I am overreacting, I know, but hear me anyway

Thoughts about a movie gone wrong
Directed by Nadine Labaki

Everything about “Capharnaum” looked good, for a while. Nadine Labaki, its talented filmmaker, the trailer (“some squirt with killer looks stands in front of a judge in a Beirut court and tells him, “I want to sue my parents for having given birth to me”), the promise of a social drama examining Lebanese society, a film by a woman, going up for the top prize in Cannes. Labaki set out to make a ... more >

CANNES FESTIVAL, “Under the silver lake” wows the Croisette

David Robert Mitchell's previous film is "It Follows"
Andrew Garfield, Riley Keough and Topher Grace

There is much going on in David Robert Mitchell’s new film “Under the silver lake,” one of the most thematically-dense feats of hardboiled storytelling of this 71st Cannes Festival. In this highly-entertaining “Lake,” to be catalogued under film noir, a tormented, and unemployed, young man, Sam (Andrew Garfield) who dreams of being famous, notices a new occupant in his L.A. apartment complex. Sam ... more >

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CANNES FESTIVAL, “Dogman”

Good cinema takes time. Matteo Garrone first thought of the idea behind “Dogman” in 2008. He had this image, that of “a few dogs, locked up in a cage, bearing witness to the explosion of human bestiality” (translated from the production notes). “Dogman” (Garrone’s fourth film in Cannes) is like a corroded fresco of an Italy that’s concealed from the sightseeing brochures. Like in “Reality,” or ... more >

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CANNES FESTIVAL, “En guerre,” Stéphane Brizé brings Vincent Lindon back to Croisette

En guerre (“At War”) focuses on one event in the life of employees of a French manufacturer of spare parts somewhere in France’s provinces: the shutting down of their plant. Two years after an agreement was reached to maintain jobs at their affiliate plant, the Germany-based parent company decides to call it quits. A strike goes in effect, and Laurent Amédéo (Vincent Lindon, here in his third ... more >

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CANNES FESTIVAL, Spike Lee rolls triumphantly back into town with highly-pleasurable “BlacKKKlansman”

From the competition program
Adam Driver, Topher Grace and Laura Harrier
Directed by Spike Lee

The Cannes Festival gives so much room to new filmmakers that it leaves one in want of excellence, movies by the top echelon guys, the masters, the dream team. 2018 is a good year in this regard, with two master filmmakers, Lars Von Trier and Spike Lee, coming to present films. Last year, there was only one member from that club, Michael Haneke who presented “Happy End.” 2018 marks a comeback, for ... more >

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CANNES FESTIVAL, underwhelming and mediocre “Pope Francis: A man of his word”

Disappointed, for professional and for personal reasons. This lapsed Catholic grew up in Europe and was raised by Jesuits at one of Paris’s private schools. I’m not a believer, anymore, but I’ve remained a Catholic, existentially speaking, the Vatican being a kind of cultural guide, my go-to moral authority in a Europe that's sometimes hardly recognizable. When I was baptized, I was named after ... more >