Saturday, May 18, 2013

2013 Cannes Film Festival - Day 4 Roundup

Cannes Palais des Festivals et des Congrès
  • Day 4 - Saturday, May 18


  • There's been plenty of excitement off-screen at Cannes, with gunfire and a late night jewel heist happening right on the Croisette. Fortunately nobody was hurt. Let's hope the films take back center stage today.

    Here's a recap of the fourth day of the 66th Cannes Film Festival (Festival de Cannes), which runs until Sunday May 26, 2013.

    Screening In Competition today:
    • From the USA, Jimmy P. (Psychotherapy of a Plains Indian) by Arnaud Desplechin.

      The French director's fifth time in competition. He returns with an English language drama starring Mathieu Amalric and Benicio Del Toro.

      Official Synopsis:
      At the end of World War II, Jimmy Picard, a Native American Blackfoot who fought in France, is admitted to Topeka Military Hospital in Kansas - an institution specializing in mental illness. Jimmy suffers from numerous symptoms: dizzy spells, temporary blindness, hearing loss... In the absence of any physiological causes, he is diagnosed as schizophrenic. Nevertheless, the hospital management decides to seek the opinion of Georges Devereux, a French anthropologist, psychoanalyst and specialist in Native American culture.
    • From Japan, Soshite Chichi Ni Naru (Like Father, Like Son) by Kore-Eda Hirokazu.

      This is Kore-Eda's third film selected to the main competition at Cannes.

      Official Synopsis:
      The moving story of a man who finally faces himself when he encounters an unexpected wall for the first time in his life.
    In the Un Certain Regard section:
    • From France, Grand Central by Rebecca Zlotowski.

      Official Synopsis:
      Gary is young, agile, a quick learner. He's one of those who's never been promised anything. After a succession of odd jobs, he's taken on at a nuclear power plant. There, amongst the reactors and their high doses of radioactivity, he finally finds what he's been looking for: money, a team, a family. But the team also includes Karole, Toni's wife, with whom he falls in love. Forbidden love and radiation slowly contaminate Gary. Each day is menacing.
    • From Hong Kong and China, Bends by Flora Lau.

      Competing for the Camera d'Or with her directorial debut.

      Official Synopsis:
      BENDS straddles the Hong Kong-­-Shenzhen border and tells the story of ANNA, an affluent housewife and FAI, her chauffeur, and their unexpected friendship as they each negotiate the pressures of Hong Kong life and the city’s increasingly complex relationship to mainland China.
    Competition Film
    Jimmy P. (Psychotherapy of a Plains Indian)
    directed by Arnaud Desplechin
    USA

    Critical response:
    "Unlike the murky process of psychoanalysis, Arnaud Desplechin’s new drama appears all too understandable and surprisingly conventional for an entry in the Competition."Alex Griffith (Next Projection)
    "An absorbing account of the minutiae of therapy and the observation that it is the man’s soul rather than his skull that requires attention."Richard Mowe (Eye For Film)
    "Playing to virtually none of his strengths either as a stylist and a storyteller, it's a curious misfire from a director whom one had hoped would return stronger to English-language fare."Guy Lodge (In Contention)
    "Devereux is played by the lovely French actor Mathieu Amalric in what one can only hope will go down as his worst ever turn. With the goggle-glasses and endless, inexplicable ebullience, it's less a performance than an audition for some Saturday Night Live skit."Catherine Shoard (The Guardian)
    "It still feels like a Desplechin film, albeit one that's had anything too conceptually advanced expunged from the script in case the audience get lost, and has been accidentally played at half speed."David Jenkins (Little White Lies)
    "At their best, Desplechin’s films exude a sense of mystery and wonder; the only mystery here is what attracted him to this woefully un-cinematic material."Mike D'Angelo (The AV Club)
    "The whole project is saved largely thanks to the subtext of ethnic discrimination that runs through the film, and two riveting central performances, which overcome a wobbly start to find emotional balance by the final reel."Deborah Young (The Hollywood Reporter)
    "Desplechin opens up new horizons with "Jimmy P", more serene, a new frontier whose contours he does not yet perfectly know, but where the Great Spirit of the Indians will perhaps accompany him. "Fabien Lemercier (Cineuropa)

    Competition Film
    Soshite Chichi Ni Naru そして父になる (Like Father, Like Son)
    directed by Kore-Eda Hirokazu
    Japan

    Critical response:
    "Once you get over the fact that the set-up involves a slight cliche about the authenticity of the humble life, this is a humane and moving film about what parents want from their children."Catherine Bray (Film4)
    "Kore-eda, the last great humanist of Japanese cinema, has crafted a film so delicately judged that it manages to bring its audience to tears one moment and put them in thralls of laughter the next"David Neary (Next Projection)
    "This is a warm and moving film, with excellent performances all round and a superb soundtrack."Jo Ann Titmarsh (Flickering Myth)
    "Although the journey Ryota has to take occasionally treads a familiar path, there are enough moments of genuine pathos and humour to carry the occasional flimsiness of the conceit in interesting and novel directions."John Bleasdale (CineVue)
    "It’s quite obvious from the first where this is going. Kore-eda’s plots are simple and direct; one could almost say childlike."Barbara Scharres (RogerEbert.com)
    "It’s nearly impossible not to respond on some level to material this emotionally freighted, and Kore-eda’s understanding of young children is typically astute, but Like Father, Like Son has the overall depth and tenor of a Lifetime movie. "Mike D'Angelo (The AV Club)
    "Kore-eda has made the most of his purposefully modest cinematic constructs. Like Father, Like Son, his latest in a long line of unassuming family dramas, is one of his most heartbreaking works yet."Jordan Cronk (The House Next Door)
    "A characteristically low-key but supple treatment of familial bonds, expectations and responsibilities that reverberates with heartrending impact."Maggie Lee (Variety)

    Un Certain Regard Film
    Grand Central
    directed by Rebecca Zlotowski
    France

    Critical response:
    "A chilling reminder of how we create our energy and how much we are prepared to risk in order to produce it."Jo Ann Titmarsh (Flickering Myth)
    "Bolstered by a wonderful ensemble cast and a smartly-written script, Zlotowski's Grand Central is a fascinating film on an urgent and seldom-explored situation."John Bleasdale (CineVue)
    "While Zlotowski benefits from the presence of a number of critically acclaimed French actors this is the sort sophomore jump that will cement her status as one to watch within the global filmmaking community."Gregory Ellwood (Awards Campaign)
    "It’s a nice premise, and there’s poise, drama and poetry in the way it’s played out, but the story and characters are too thin, in the end, to achieve meltdown."Lee Marshall (Screen Daily)

    Un Certain Regard Film
    Bends
    directed by Flora Lau
    Hong Kong, China

    Critical response:
    "While there isn’t much of a narrative here, the two leads are effortless at portraying worried souls who, through no real fault of their own, find themselves in very different binds."Tim Grierson (Screen Daily)
    "Distinguished by understated lead performances from Carina Lau and Chen Kun, and by the coolly elegant visuals of cinematographer Christopher Doyle, this is a quiet film that reflects in human terms the uneasy symbiosis of Hong Kong with mainland China."David Rooney (The Hollywood Reporter)
    "Beautifully assembled by a top-pedigree production crew, but it remains a modest accomplishment in scope and impact"Maggie Lee (Variety)
See our other #Cannes2013 coverage:

6 comments:

Bonjour Tristesse said...

I'm happy about the good reviews the new Koreeda is getting. I like what I've seen from him so far.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

That's scary gunshots were fired at Cannes. It seems we can't go a month without another shooter seeking attention. Hopefully they can take it like Werner Herzog did a few years ago, who was shot, and said: "the poet must not avert his eyes."

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Me too. He's a brilliant director. We'll see if this early buzz holds up.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Scary. Luckily they were blanks. Let's hope the fest continues without further incident.

Bonjour Tristesse said...

I'm glad to see that Kore-eda's latest film is a winner and carries the emotions well! I just know I'm going to cry based on his past work alone. Great job rounding everything up and getting a trailer!

Bonjour Tristesse said...

So am I. It does seem to be the most likely in the slate to appeal to Spielberg, we'll see what happens Sunday. Glad you're enjoying the coverage. Thanks for stopping by!

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