Saturday, May 25, 2013

2013 Cannes Film Festival - Day 11 Roundup

The Palme d'Or
  • Day 11 - Saturday, May 25

  • Recap of the eleventh and final day of competition at the 66th Cannes Film Festival (Festival de Cannes), which runs until Sunday May 26, 2013.

    Screening In Competition today:
    • From France, La Vénus À La Fourrure (Venus in Fur) by Roman Polanski.

      Previous Palme d'Or winner in 2002 for The Pianist. This is his twenty-first feature film.

      Official Synopsis:
      Alone in a Paris theater after a long day of auditioning actresses for the lead role in his new play, writer-director Thomas complains on the phone about the poor caliber of talent he has seen. No actress has what it takes to play his lead female character-a woman who enters into an agreement with her male counterpart to dominate him as her slave. Thomas is about to leave the theater when actress Vanda bursts in, a whirlwind of erratic-and, it turns out, erotic-energy.
    • From the UK and Germany, Only Lovers Left Alive by Jim Jarmusch.

      His eleventh feature film. A previous Camera d'Or, Short Film Palme d'Or, and Jury Grand Prix winner.

      Official Synopsis:
      Set against the romantic desolation of Detroit and Tangier, an underground musician, deeply depressed by the direction of human activities, reunites with his resilient and enigmatic lover.
      Their love story has already endured several centuries at least, but their debauched idyll is soon disrupted by her wild and uncontrollable younger sister.
      Can these wise but fragile outsiders continue to survive as the modern world collapses around them?
    Competition Film
    La Vénus À La Fourrure (Venus in Fur)
    directed by Roman Polanski
    Quotes from the press conference:

    "I grew up in the theatre, at 14 I had my first lead in a play in Poland. I have a particular relationship with an empty theatre."Roman Polanski on the film's location
    "Well, my mother will be here tonight, and she will no doubt explain it all to me... No, my grandmother came from Poland, she was from Krakow."Mathieu Amalric about his physical resemblance to Polanski.
    "It's not difficult working with him. He has high expectations but he offers up a wide field of creativity to his collaborators."Composer Alexander Desplat on working with Polanski

    Critical response:
    "This is a fun piece of play-acting for as long as it lasts, but it never quite feels like much more. Things may become kinky in front of the lens, but you can sense Polanski lurking behind it throughout, always ready with his safe-word."Robbie Collin (The Telegraph)
    "A teasing dialectic of subjugation and power, female objectification and emasculating rebuke"David Rooney (The Hollywood Reporter)
    "Polanski wins over, entertains and asks questions of his audience, and he does it with remarkable economy which succeeds, above all, thanks to the setting and the actors who have the ability to multiply themselves."Domenico La Porta (Cineuropa)
    "Beneath a brittle veneer of verbal dash and cleverness, this stagebound adaptation has little insight to give us into anything except the sexual hubris of an aging man"Jessica Kiang (The Playlist)
    "There are few directors as adept at shot-reverse shot conversation scenes or at sinuous Steadicam tracks that create the subtlest sense of unease."Keith Uhlich (Timeout)

    Competition Film
    Only Lovers Left Alive
    directed by Jim Jarmusch
    UK, Germany
    Quotes from the press conference:

    "I wanted to make a love story with vampires. It took maybe seven years to make this film. I have a love for the whole history of vampire films."Jim Jarmusch
    "I think the answers are in the film. I really want the film to speak for itself. I don't want to demystify it by trying to analyze it or dissect it."Jim Jarmusch
    "We're all so terrified of thinking about mortality that we'd rather think about being immortal."Tilda Swinton on the allure of vampires.

    Critical response:
    "It’s a film full of passion, not only between its lead characters but also for the world in general – putting one back in touch with things beyond the festival bubble. "David Cox (Film4)
    "It's a thin premise for what amounts more to an extended sketch than a fully realized love story, though at least the one-ply joke is a droll one, played with good humor by the leads."Guy Lodge (In Contention)
    "If you can groove with Jarmusch's patient, philosophical indulgences and the wooden exteriors of his characters' lives, the movie rewards with a savvy emotional payoff about moving forward even when the motivation to do so has gone."Eric Kohn (Indiewire)
    "The real pleasure of the film is in its languid droll cool and its romantic portrayal of the central couple, who are now our number one role models in the inevitable event of us turning vampiric."Jessica Kiang (The Playlist)
    There’s a lot of fun in an elegant and hyper-literate script that constantly calls attention to its own dry contrivance."Jonathan Romney (Screen Daily)
    "Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston have empathic chemistry as the leads, and the pic is a smidge more commercial than Jarmusch’s meandering previous effort, “The Limits of Control.” But it still feels like an in-joke intended only for select acolytes"Leslie Felperin (Variety)
    "This 100% European feature film by Jim Jarmusch treats itself to a relatively humoristic playground, invested with real charisma by Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston. "Fabien Lermercier (Cineuropa)
    "Few images at Cannes have ravished me more than each character's opium-like swoon after they sip their claret-colored libations; no screenplay has gifted me as many laugh out loud moments; and no movie has sent me out into the full-mooned night, all senses elated, on as glad-to-be-alive a high."Keith Uhlich (Timeout)

See our other #Cannes2013 coverage:


Unknown said...

For a second there I thought that was Gary Oldman hugging Tilda, of course it's Tom Hiddelson. Jarmusch is a bit hit or miss for me, hopefully this will be one I connect with, I'm glad he refuses to explain its meaning.

Unknown said...

Oh man, I'm glad both the new Jarmusch and new Polanski are getting good notices. I love both of those filmmakers as I'm going to do an Auteurs piece on Jarmusch later this year.

Unknown said...

I"m looking forward to both of these - they look great! Jarmusch and Swinton and Vampires is a natural combination - lovely! I hope Polanski gets out of the way enough for me to be able to enjoy his film. I hate to love him so much.

Unknown said...

I could probably watch both of them easy, what I'm not sure of is if I'll be telling anybody to give them a watch before I spoil it. Just neither of them -really- exciting me.

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