The general consensus among Cannes-attending journos I’ve spoken to recently is that the 68th Cannes Film Festival is among the most anemic in recent memory. Son of Saul, Carol and Amy, Son of Saul, Carol and Amy, Son of Saul, Carol and Amy…that’s all you’ll hear when you ask anyone about the highlights. For some reason I haven’t heard anyone mention Pete Docter‘s Inside Out, although that’s certainly been among the “best” films shown here, at the very least on a craft level. Otherwise the festival selections have been a series of planes trying to lift into the clouds but, like Harrison Ford‘s recent experience with a vintage plane at Santa Monica Airport, afflicted with sputtering-engine syndrome and either crash landing or having to put her down on a nearby golf course.
Over the last nine days beginning on Wednesday, 5.13 (tomorrow is my last full day here), I’ve been listening to moaning and occasional tap-dancing from literally dozens of festivalgoers about Matteo Garrone‘s Tale of Tales, Yorgos Lanthimos‘ The Lobster, Woody Allen‘s Irrational Man, Nathalie Portman‘s A Tale of Love and Darkness (which I didn’t even see after hearing I didn’t need to bother), Gus Van Sant‘s The Sea of Trees, Nanni Moretti‘s Mia Madre, Maiwenn‘s Mon Roi, Joachim Trier‘s Louder Than Bombs, Brilliante Mondoza‘s Taklub (which I saw but didn’t feel motivated to write anything about), Paolo Sorrentino‘s Youth, Hao Hsiao-Hsien‘s The Assassin (which I’m expecting to more or less suffer through tomorrow), Jacques Audiard‘s Dheepan…almost everything shown here has been received as meh-level, problematic, mildly disappointing, respectable but not earthshaking, etc.