Thursday, April 19, 2012

2012 Cannes Film Festival: Official Selection

The official selections for the 2012 Cannes Film Festival were announced on April 19 by the festival's Artistic Director, Thierry Frémaux. A total of 54 features representing 26 countries were chosen from the 1,779 films submitted, with the possibility for a few late additions in the coming weeks.

As always, the exciting main competition lineup features some of the most anticipated titles of the year from many of my favorite directors. Films I have been greatly looking forward to including: David Cronenberg's Cosmopolis, Jacques Audiard's Rust & Bone, Michael Haneke's Amour, and Cristian Mungiu's Beyond the Hills. Sadly there was no mention of Wong Kar Wai's long overdue The Grandmasters. I'm crossing my fingers for a last minute addition, but this is still one very strong programme.

Some other major titles announced include Walter Salles' On the Road, Andrew Dominik's Killing Them Softly, and John Hillcoat's Lawless.

Earlier in the week it was also announced that The Artist co-star, Bérénice Bejo, will host the festival's opening and closing ceremonies.

Italian director Nanni Moretti is the President of the Jury. He is joined by Palestinian actress Hiam Abbass, British director Andrea Arnold, French actress Emmanuelle Devos, German actress Diane Kruger, French designer Jean Paul Gaultier, British actor Ewan McGregor, American director Alexander Payne, and Haitian director Raoul Peck.

Read on for an overview of the full lineup of 22 films competing for the 65th Cannes Film Festival Palme d'Or or see the Un Certain Regard Films:
Opening Film
Moonrise Kingdom
directed by Wes Anderson

This American director's return to live action, following 2009's animated film The Fantastic Mr. Fox, is the perfect picture to kick off the festival. Featuring an all-star cast that includes Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Harvey Keitel, Frances McDormand, and Jason Schwartzman. The opening night red carpet should be quite the event.

Official Selection Film
directed by David Cronenberg
Canada Canada, France France, Portugal Portugal, Italy Italy

David Cronenberg (Crash, 1996 Jury Special Prize) returns to Cannes for the fourth time with this adaptation of a cult novel by Don DelLillo. It stars Robert Pattinson, Juliette Binoche, Mathieu Amalric, Samantha Morton, and Paul Giamatti, and is beginning to look like a seriously intense return to form for the master director after last year's mildly received A Dangerous Method.

Official Selection Film
Rust & Bone • De rouille et d'os
directed by Jacques Audiard
Belgium Belgium, France France

This is director Jacques Audiard's (Un Prophète, 2009 Grand Prix) third film to be screened at the Croisette. An adaptation of a short story by Craig Davidson starring Academy Award winner Marion Cotillard (La vie en rose), Belgium's Matthias Schoenaerts (Bullhead), and up-and-coming French actress Céline Sallette (House of Tolerance). Every one of his films have been excellent, and this one looks to be no different.

Official Selection Film
directed by Michael Haneke
France France, Austria Austria, Germany Germany

Michael Haneke's sixth film to premiere in competition is this highly anticipated followup to 2009 Palme d'Or winner The White Ribbon. He's also won Best Director for 2005's Caché, as well as the Grand Prix for 2001's The Piano Teacher. This also marks the director's third collaboration with actress Isabelle Huppert (Time of the Wolf, The Piano Teacher) who co-stars with Jean-Louis Trintignant, William Shimell, and Emmanuelle Riva, in this drama about a retired couple who must deal with the aftermath of the wife's debilitating stroke.

Official Selection Film
Vous n'avez encore rien vu
directed by Alain Resnais
France France

89 year-old director Alain Resnais (My American Uncle, 1980 Jury Grand Prize) adaptation of the play Eurydice by Jean Anouilh starring Lambert Wilson, Mathieu Amalric, Michel Piccoli, Anne Consigny, and Sabine Azéma.

Official Selection Film
Holy Motors
directed by Leos Carax
France France

Leos Carax first film since 1999's Pola X, is a drama about a man who travels between parallel lives starring Eva Mendes, Kylie Minogue, Denis Lavant, and Michel Piccoli.

Official Selection Film
Killing Them Softly
directed by Andrew Dominik

Formerly titled Cogan's Trade, and adapted from the novel of that name by George V. Higgins, this mob thriller by Andrew Dominik (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford) stars Brad Pitt, Scoot McNairy, Ben Mendelsohn, James Gandolfini, and Ray Liotta.

Official Selection Film
directed by John Hillcoat

Australian director John Hillcoat (The Road) adapts a depression era crime drama from a screenplay by Nick Cave, starring Tom Hardy, Guy Pearce, Gary Oldman, Shia LaBeouf, and Jessica Chastain.

Official Selection Film
Like Someone In Love
directed by Abbas Kiarostami
France France, Japan Japan

Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami (Taste of Cherry, 1997 Palme d'Or) continues his international adventures with a Japanese drama starring Ryo Kase, Denden, Rin Takanashi, and Tadashi Okuno.

Official Selection Film
The Paperboy
directed by Lee Daniels

Lee Daniels (Precious), directs this thriller about a Florida reporter who investigates a case involving a death row inmate. It stars Zac Efron, John Cusack, Matthew McConaughey, and Nicole Kidman.

Official Selection Film
directed by Matteo Garrone
France France, Italy Italy

Italian director Matteo Garrone (Gomorra, 2007 Jury Grand Prix) returns with a comedy drama set in a reality-show starring Claudia Gerini, Nunzia Schiano, Ciro Petrone, Loredana Simioli, and Arturo Gambardella.

Official Selection Film
The Taste of Money
directed by Im Sang-soo
South Korea South Korea

South Korean director Im Sang-soo's (The Housemaid) seventh film is an erotic thriller set in the corporate world starring Kim Kang-woo, Yoon Yeo-jeong, Kim Hyo-jin, and Baek Yoon-sik.

Official Selection Film
In Another Country
directed by Hong Sang-soo
South Korea South Korea

South Korean auteur Hong Sang-soo (Hahaha, 2010 Un Certain Regard Award), returns to Cannes for the fourth time with a drama that takes place in a small coastal village starring Isabelle Huppert and Yu Jun-Sang (Hahaha).

Official Selection Film
The Angels' Share
directed by Ken Loach
France France, UK UK

Veteran UK director Ken Loach (The Wind That Shakes the Barley, 2006 Palme d'Or) returns to the Croisette for an incredible fourteenth time with another Paul Laverty written film about a young father who tries to turn over a new leaf in life, starring Paul Brannigan, John Henshaw, William Ruane, Gary Maitland, Jasmin Riggins, and Siobhan Reilly.

Official Selection Film
In the Fog
directed by Sergei Loznitsa
Germany Germany, Netherlands Netherlands, Belarus Belarus, Russia Russia, Latvia Latvia

Belarusian director Sergei Loznitsa (My Joy) makes his second appearance at Cannes with this existential WWII drama based on a novel by Vassily Bykov, about a man wrongly accused of collaboration with the Germans. Starring Vladimir Svirskiy, Vladislav Abashin, Sergei Kolesov, and Yulia Peresild.

Official Selection Film
Beyond the Hills
directed by Cristian Mungiu
Romania Romania

Romanian New Wave pioneer Cristian Mungiu's long awaited followup to his 2007 Palme d'Or winner 4 Months, 3 Weeks & 2 Days, is a drama based on the writings of journalist Tatiana Niculsescu about two orphans from an Orthodox convent in contemporary Romania, starring Cosmina Stratan, Cristina Flutur, Valeriu Andriuta, Dana Tapalaga, and Catalina Harabagiu.
Official Selection Film
After the Battle
directed by Yousry Nasrallah
France France, Egypt Egypt

Egyptian director Yousry Nasrallah (Scheherazade Tell Me a Story) presents a love story that develops between an unemployed man and a recent divorcee during the violent Tahrir Square protests of February 2011. It stars Menna Chalaby and Bassem Samra.

Official Selection Film
directed by Jeff Nichols

American director Jeff Nichols who won last year's Critics Week Grand Prize with his film Take Shelter, enters this year's main competition with a drama about a friendship that develops between a fugitive on the run and a teenage boy who helps him escape off a Mississippi island. It stars Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon, Michael Shannon, and Tye Sheridan (The Tree of Life).

Official Selection Film
Post Tenebras Lux
directed by Carlos Reygadas
France France, Mexico Mexico, Netherlands Netherlands

Mexican director Carlos Reygadas (Silent Light, 2007 Special Jury Prize) returns to Cannes with a semi-autobiographical drama about his feelings, memories, hopes, and dreams.

Official Selection Film
On the Road
directed by Walter Salles
France France, USA USA, UK UK

Brazilian director Walter Salles (The Motorcycle Diaries) adaptation of the classic Jack Kerouac novel starring Sam Riley, Garrett Hedlund, Kristen Stewart, Kirsten Dunst, Viggo Mortensen, and Amy Adams.

Official Selection Film
Paradise: Love
directed by Ulrich Seidl
France France, Germany Germany, Austria Austria

Austrian director Ulrich Seidl (Import/Export) returns to Cannes with a story about a middle aged care worker who travels to Kenya to find love, while her overweight teenage daughter attends a weight loss camp back home in Austria. It stars Maria Hofstätter, Margarete Tiesel, Inge Maux, and Gabriel Mwarua.
Official Selection Film
The Hunt
directed by Thomas Vinterberg
Denmark Denmark

Danish director Thomas Vinterberg (Festen, 1998 Jury Prize) latest drama centers on a recent divorcé who is accused of abusing a small child, starring Mads Mikkelsen, Alexandra Rapaport, Susse Wold, and Thomas Bo Larsen

Closing Film - Out of competition
Thérèse Desqueyroux
directed by Claude Miller
France France

Claude Miller (Class Trip, 1998 Jury Prize) who sadly passed away earlier this month in Paris at the age of 70, is honored with the festival's closing film. Miller began his career as a protégé of François Truffaut and is known for completing his mentor's final film The Little Thief after his death in 1984. Miller's own final piece is an adaptation of the 1927 novel by Nobel laureate author François Mauriac, starring Audrey Tautou, Gilles Lellouche, Anaïs Demoustier, and Stanley Weber.

More trailers, posters, and details will be added when available. In the meantime what do you think about the lineup?


Jessica said...

Looks interesting. Very glad to see that there's a new movie by Thomas Vinterberg incoming. I'm a fan of Festen, but it's been too long...
However I'm baffled at the lack of female directors. I guess it reflects the state of film industry.

Cherokee said...

Good line-up this year, I'd say. I think last year just ended up being dominated by The Artist, really - though, of course The Tree of Life won the Palme d'or (and rightfully so). A lot of films I want to check out that have popped up on this years line-up! 

Jason Hemming said...

This is really great of you to

Michaël Parent said...

It will be an excellent year at Cannes! I wish I could go this year... The selection is great and I can't wait for the new Cronenberg, Mungiu, Dominik, Audiard, Haneke, Wes Anderson, and Reygadas! You should add this in the IMDb Hit List if you've haven't already done it...

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Yeah that really is a shame. Last year there were four female directors, and this year none.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

There were some very good films in last year's lineup, most of my top 10 was from there. But I think this one has a very good chance of doing the same. Let's hope they live up to expectations.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Welcome Jason, and thanks for your comment.

Yes, so many awesome directors are represented here. I have a feeling that Amour will be an all time classic.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

I know, and there are several more in the Un Certain Regard section I'm dying to see too.

I just checked IMDb, and as my luck would have it, they just discontinued the Hit List feature...

Pete said...

Great round up!  I'm extremely excited about Cosmopolis.  I want to be excited by Moonrise Kingdom because of the cast but the trailer just doesnn't appeal to me.  I also have high hopes for The Paperboy and On the Road.  Thanks for posting all this!

Michaël Parent said...

Too bad! Many blogs got boosts of visits with this feature! I've never been able to get on it...

Diana said...

I really like the selection, a lot of very interesting movies there! I have an eye out for On The Road, Mud, Lawless, Cosmopolis, Beyond the hills and a few others. Lovely post, I wish I had your stylistic approach or sense, my post is boring comparing to yours! Thanks for the effort!

Steven Flores said...

I'm excited about this year's competitions.  The films I'm eager to see are Moonrise Kingdom, Cosmopolis, Rust & Bone, Lawless, Mud, On the Road, the new ones from Kiarostami, Mingiu, Haneke, Reygadas, Resnais, Carax, and Dominik.  This will rock!  Not surprised that Terry Malick isn't going to be there with his upcoming film but I'm surprised by no women filmmakers in the listings as there were 4 last year.

d_4 said...

Some of these look super interesting and I look forward to hearing more about them. Some I think I'll be avoiding though...

ruth said...

I love that poster they had w/ Marilyn.

Wow, lots of cool movies here. I'm curious about Moonrise Kingdom, and Cosmopolis looks really intriguing!

NeverTooEarlyMP said...

I am really excited about this year's competition, partially because I have been following a few of these films for a while now. I'm particularly looking forward to On The Road, Cosmopolis and Moonrise Kingdom.

Margaret said...

Great and very imformative post! I hope Cosmopolis will turn out to be a good movie, after the let down that  "A Dangerous Method" was.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

 Thanks for stopping by Pete!

Bonjour Tristesse said...

 Thank you very much Diana!

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Yep what an incredible lineup, this is shaping up to be a landmark year, but yeah it is a shame there are no women directors represented in the main competition.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Yeah, I might prefer last year's Faye Dunaway poster, but no doubt this one is great too.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Now that you mention it, I think there are a few of these that I first heard about from your blog. Will be interesting to see how these picks affect your predictions.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

 Thanks Margaret. I do have a feeling that Cosmopolis will be a huge success.

Tyler said...

Fantastic write-up, I'll definitely be coming back to it when these films are released in my area (which sadly will be a while). Earlier today I tweeted that I would be content if either Michael Haneke, Alain Resnais or Abbas Kiarostami took home the Palme D'Or, but with all these selections I don't know who will win and some of them look very deserving. However since Haneke is my favourite working director at the moment, I'm sincerely hoping Amour will do well and maybe even take home a top prize. Fingers crossed...

Andrew Buckle said...

Wow, this is a fantastic line-up isn't it? Though some of the directors didn't ring a bell initially, reading what else they have done certainly is exciting. Can't wait for Jeff Nichols' new film.

Stevee said...

This is a great guide! I wish I were going to Cannes. Such a great lineup! And since seeing the new Cosmopolis trailer, I've very excited for it.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Thanks Tyler. If I had to choose amongst those three, I think I'd like to see Resnais finally get one. 

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Yeah, it sure is a monster lineup. So many high profile films this year...and I'm glad you found the post useful. Thanks for stopping by Andy.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Thanks Stevee, I wish I was going too!

Indeed, Cosmopolis looks awesome! I was worried when I first heard who was playing the lead but that trailer changed my mind.

Richard Partson said...

Some amazing films! I need to watch more.

Jason said...

A decent Asian presence this year and some interesting titles from America. I'm looking forward to seeing critical reaction to Like Someone in Love and The Paperboy. Haneke has got an interesting cast but the subject matter looks tough...  I read Don DelLillo 's Cosmopolis and despite it only being a short book it took me an age to read. I hated it so much. I'll watch the film version though because the cast looks awesome and it's Cronenberg so he should be able to make something great.

CastorTroy said...

Heavy US presence this year, which is good to see in a way since we will probably get a better chance to see these movies in the coming months. I hope Lawless rocks but to be honest, it doesn't look all that promising too me so far.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Yep this could be one of those rare instances where the film is better than the book. It looks exciting enough from the trailer, hopefully it's a hit.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Yeah and so much star power too. This will probably be the most followed fest ever.

365 moviesandsongs365 said...

Thanks BT for this detailed post on the lineup, lots to look forward to! The older I get, the more I begin to acknowledge that Cannes is the most interesting film festival in terms of the auteur directors  (besides Toronto and Sundance maybe?)

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Yep Cannes is definitely the premier event for auteurs, with the other big two being Venice and Berlin.

Sundance is the best for Indie films. SXSW and Tribeca are a couple of other major festivals catering to independents.

Toronto is different because it doesn't have a competition but it is just as important because it often hosts the premieres for upcoming awards season hopefuls, and is really the first chance for the public and mass media to see the year's big festival titles.

Lesya said...

Thanks very much for this post. Incredibly informative.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

 Thanks Lesya, I'm glad you found it useful, and it's good to have you back.

iluvcinema said...

I LOVE that poster. After reviewing the selections this year more closely than I have in years past, I am quite impressed with the offering. 

I wish I had the resources to 1) go to Cannes and 2) get that lovely poster (seems like it only available on site in Cannes)

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Yeah, I think they always do that to keep them exclusive. I guess there is always ebay...

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