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Thread: Cannes Film Festival 2018

  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Knipp View Post
    Another collaboration between Stéphane Brizé and Vincent Lindon cannot fail to be of interest, Oscar. I have reviewed his Not Here to Be Loved and saw it twice, in Paris and in the US, as the one you saw, Mademoiselle Chambon (also with Lindon, also seen twice) and The Measure of a Man
    Just bought a British edition dvd of Not here to be Loved. The French Brize coffret doesn't have English subs on any of the 4 discs.

  2. #17
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    There is a new Measure of a Man (without the definite article) out in Landmark Theaters, a bland coming-of-age movie directed by Ken Loach's son, Jim Loach, I just learned. At Opera Plaza, San Francisco.

  3. #18
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    Cannes 2018 continues.


    Mads Mikkelsen in Arctic

    Arctic (Joe Penna).

    (Shown as a Midnight Screening. The other of the two is Yoon Jong-Bing'sThe Spy Gone North.)
    An outdoor thriller of a survivor, a research-explorer crash-landed in the far north wilderness, this stars Mads Mikkelsen and, says Owen Gleiberman in his Variety review, succeeds because it is methodical and cuts no corners. A slow build, the film delves deep, like its granddaddy, Defoe'sRobinson Crusoe. Guardian reviewer Gwilym Mumford (new name?) gives it an enthusiastic 4/5 stars. Well, maybe, but as Gleiberman himself notes, the survivor tale of this kind is so familiar it's almost become cozy. Mads Mikkelsen is an always watchable, sometimes very good actor.


    Scratchboard image from Samouni Road

    Samouni Road (Stefano Savona).

    Shown in Directors' Fortnight.
    This is the study of an extended family of farmers in Gaza ravaged by Israeli brutalities told through various documents (drone recreations) and scratchboard animation ("overseen by Stefano Massi") that Jay Weissberg in his enthusiastic Variety review calls "superb." He predicts this film will be "a touchstone in the cinematic representation of the Strip." Savona also did a doc on the Egyptian revolution (Tahrir, Liberation Square) that Weissberg says was presciently wary of its future. The family has been largely massacred by the Israeli army, but some members survive, showing a resilience Weissberg understandably admires. This will be a painful but necessary viewing, no doubt.

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 10:48 AM.

  4. #19
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    Two iffy ones.


    Adam Driver and Jonathan Pryce in The Man Who Killed Don Quixote

    The Man Who Killed Don Quixote (Terry Guilliam).

    As you no doubt know, Terry Guilliam had a stroke, and cannot come to Cannes, so the showing of his long awaited film about Cervantes' masterpiece is not likely to take place. And now it's said that the US distribution of this film has been cancelled. If you watch a t r a i l e r, it may look like they had almost too much fun. You probably also know about the 2002 documentary Lost in La Mancha describing Gilliam's difficulties getting the picture made back in the late Nineties. Amazon now is withdrawing due to legal disputes over ownership. Back then it was to have been with Jean Rochfort and Johnny Depp. The completed film has Adam Driver, Jonathan Pryce, and Stellan Skarsgård. Now a change of producers has caused legal disputes, Variety recounts. Now, though, an AVClub piece says the movie has been cleared by French court for Cannes premiere. And the latest (13 May) is that Gilliam's stroke was slight and he is out of hospital and determined to come to Cannes for the end-of-festival screening of his movie.

    Gotti (Kevin Connolly).

    This film biography starring John Travolta as the gangster will premiere out of competition at Cannes at a special gala screening at the Palais des Festivals on May 15. It comes to US theaters June 15. The Variety story suggests that Travolta bonded strongly with John Gotti Jr., who was often on set, and Travolta fitted perfectly into Gottii Jr.'s father's custom-made clothes, which the family freely provided to him, shirts, cufflinks, and all. Intriguing if only as a curiosity, but it was dropped by its original distributor and its release delayed. It was going to come out last Dec. 5. US theatrical release is scheduled for one month from the Cannes premiere, on June 15.

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 10:47 AM.

  5. #20
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    Treat Me Like Fire/Joueurs (Marie Monge).

    Shown in Directors' Fortnight.
    In this noirish Audiard-inspired French thriller, a directorial debut, whose title means "Players," a young man cons a waitress into taking him onto the staff of a restaurant kitchen to gain access to the cash register in order to feed his gambling addiction, which he persuades the waitress to join him in as his mad lover. Tahar Rahim and Stacy Martin star. In his Guardian review Peter Bradshaw awards an enthusiastic 4/5 star rating.Sounds a great role for Rahim as this con man, possibly a fun but also an irritating watch where you want to shake the girl out of this dumb relationship, as Jordan Mintzer makes clear in his Hollywood Reporter review. Coming out in France July 4, 2018.


    Stacy Martin and Tahir Rahim in Joueurs

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 10:36 AM.

  6. #21
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    Ten Years Thailand: the "Black Mirror" short by Wisit has CGI cat-heads

    Angel (Luis Ortega).

    (Shown in Un Certain Regard.)
    "Argentinean director Luis Ortega recreates the crimes of a notorious baby-faced killer, with backing from Pedro Almodovar." Stephen Dalton in his Hollywood Reporter review. He says the story is as if Tadzio from Viscont's Death in Venice has become a "trigger-happy psychopath." But I'd suggest Dalton take another look at Visconti's Tadzio, and back at Lorenzo Ferro, the actor here; but Ferro may be a good match for the real-life imprisoned killer Carlos Robledo Puch. Sounds unsavory.

    The Image Book/Le livre d'image (Jean-Luc Godard).

    (Shown in Competition.)
    The 87-year-old experimentalist's latest is described by Todd McCarthy in his Hollywood Reporter review. Like his previous two films it's composed of preexisting footage. These are for a few diehard Godardians, and I am not one of them. Nonetheless the open-minded Peter Bradshaw of the Guardian watched it and gave it 4/5 stars. "It’s an essay film with the body-language of a horror movie, avowedly taking Godard’s traditional concerns with the ethical status of cinema and history and looking to the Arab world and indirectly examining our orientalism – Godard cites the Conradian phrase for a culture held 'under Western eyes,'" Bradshaw writes. See my detailed discussion of Godard's Film Socialisme as part of Filmleaf's NYFF 2010 coverage.

    My Favorite Fabric/Mon tissu préréré (Gaya Jiji).

    (Shown in Un Certain Regard.)
    Revolving around a young woman in Syria in recent years, this erotically frustrated coming of age film, which devolves into fantasy, in several reviews sounds unsuccessful. Its politically charged settings may be more interesting than the half-baked story. Of interest only for that; but, given my personal interest in the region and the language, it would still be worth watching.

    Los Silencios (Beatriz Seigner)

    (Shown in Directors' Fortnight.)
    A mother and two children who are bereaved refugees from Colombia (and its FARC vs. government civil war) a hoping to emigrate to Brazil are he focus of this sophomore effort. It is attractive for its vivid, exotic milieu, a marshy region where Brazil, Colombia and Peru meet. The film ex"explores a variety of porous boundaries, not just between political states, but also between the living and the dead, land and river, documentary and fiction, and horror and realism," writes Leslie Felperin (Hollywood Reporter). This sounds like one of those richly atmospheric Latin American films - the soundscape is especially good, Felperin says, and there is a magic realist focus on ghosts. Sounds worth watching, though it may be a bit amorphous.

    Ten Years Thailand (Apichatpong Weerasethakul and others).

    (Shown in Special Screenings.)
    The directors are Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Wisit Sasanatieng, Aditya Assarat, and Chulayarnnon Siriphol: here's where cut-and-paste is a blessed computer function. "The Ten Years" series comes from a Hong Kong predicting the coming decade, one that was fiercely critical of the place's future under Chinese rule and a huge hit and is going to be done for other countries, Thailand being the first. Giovanni Marchini Camia in his FilmStage review gives the details of the four shorts, which depict and predict repression under the current regime of the country. One short depicts cultural (photo show) repression but has a touching romantic side, while the second much more cynical one by Wisit is in outline based on a recent "Black Mirror" episode. The third is visually fascinating but makes little sense at least to outsiders, and "Joe's" is the simplest and strongest, pointing toward a repressed future, given the constant military regimes and current junta rule. Well, this deserves a place here, but isn't too likely to get theatrical distribution, is it?


    Jean-Luc Godard [- GUardian]

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 10:54 AM.

  7. #22
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    Dead Souls (Wang Bing)

    Shown in Special Screenings.
    This was an eight-hour film with an hour intermission in the middle, the longest film ever shown at Cannes, introduced by Thierry Fremaux, according to A.A. Dowd in his AVClub review. I understand it to refer to some of the worst depredations of the Fifties Cultural Revolution, the anti-Rightist movement and its forced labor camps in which many died. Shot over 12 years with many interviews, it sounds analogous to Claude Lanzmann's Shoah. Sounds not as good, if one's allowed to compare, since it's 8 hours and Dowd says it would been better at 5 hours, while Shoah seems masterful at 9 hours. A punishing experience I'd avoid but some will find essential, if interested in this subject. Clarence Tsui's Post Magazine piece sheds further light.


    An interviewee in Wang Bing's Dead Souls


    An interviewee in Wang Bing's Dead Souls

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-11-2018 at 06:54 PM.

  8. #23
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    Border/Gräns (Ali Abbasi)

    (Shown in Un Certain Regard.)
    Abbassi is Iranian but went to film school and works in Denmark. Alissa Simon's Variety review heads off with the statement that Border is "An exciting, intelligent mix of romance, Nordic noir, social realism and supernatural horror that defies and subverts genre conventions." "Destined to be a cult classic," Simon says. NEON has snapped up the North American rights and it's selling elsewhere fast. Co-written by Let the Right One In author John Ajvide Lindqvist, who's as big as Stephen King in Scandinavia. This movie focuses on a strange, Neanderthal-ugly Swedish woman customs agent good at (literally) sniffing out contraband, more than that with unique ties with the natural world, who who meets a kind of male double, and is faced with a moral choice. Allan Hunter's ScreenDaily review adds more hints about a film probably best approached cold; he is impressed by how it pulls together all its disparate elements. This theme doesn't sound at all appealing to me. But then, who would have bought the idea behind Let the Right One In, and yet, what a great movie it is.

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 10:33 AM.

  9. #24
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    [Le Monde, Paris]

    Best Palmes d'Or?

    Peter Bradshaw of the Guardian, who likes to pontificate (and isn't bad at it, after all), has just published his own list of the ten best Palme d'Or films at Cannes, since this is said to be its 70th year. See his comments. Click.

    Here they are in ascending order, as people like to list stuff now:

    But you really need to read his comments. As in his reviews the glibness goes astray sometimes, but the man can write with impressive ease.
    10 Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (2010)
    9 The Piano (1993)
    8 Pulp Fiction (1994)
    7 Viridiana (1961)
    6 The White Ribbon (2009)
    5 La Dolce Vita (1960)
    4 The Son’s Room (2001)
    3 Taxi Driver (1976)
    2 Taste of Cherry (1997)
    1 The Third Man (1949)
    I like that he says The Son's Room "induces an ecstasy of sadness" and calls La Doolce Vita "the circus of all worldly vanity." Thought-provoking to consider Harry Lime (Orson Welles) in The Third Man "could be a martyred Judas Iscariot, someone who has absorbed everyone else’s sins." Whether you agreee with these choices or this order, it is good, in any case, to remember these wonderful films and hear Bradshaw's sharp observations. This shows that, contrary to some recent impressions, the Cannes choices aren't always off the wall. There is greatness in this place as well as glamor.

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 05:26 PM.

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    Angel Face: Ayline Aksoy-Etaix and Marion Cotillard

    The Spy Gone North/공작 (Yoon Jong-bin).

    (Shown as a Midnight Screening.
    The other one was Arctic (Joe Penna).)
    From South Korean comes a thriller that's a true story of a spy who infiltrates the North to ferret out nuclear secrets and becomes a double agent in spite of himself. Plenty of dirt on South Korean politics as well. Charles Bramesco gives this 3/5 stars in his Guardian review. This is plotted "less as a spy story and more as a political exposé," according to Deborah Young of Hollywood Reporter. A lot to follow, juicy stuff from the sound of it. Let's hope this doesn't endanger the coming rapprochement.

    Angel Face/Gueule d'ange (Vanessa Filho)

    (Shown in Un Certain Regard.)
    This French debut about a party girl mom played by Marion Cotillard is soapy stuff, critics say. Both she and 8-year-old daughter are wild, and drink.2/5 stars from Xian Brooks in the Guardian. In his Hollywood Reporter review, Boyd van Hoeij is reminded of last year's Florida Project by Sean Baker shown in Directors' Fortnight, but this has a big star "looking like one of the most glamorous white-trash fantasy figures in the history of the movies." There are ways that The Florida Project is more credible. Though Cotillard is great here, it sounds like mostly eye candy. One could give it a by - except, that even in the US, Marion has a lot of fans, and she can add a glow to any film.

    Woman at War/Kona fer i stríð (Benedikt Erlingsson)

    (Shown in Critics Week Feature Competition.)
    Icelandic Of Horses and Men (ND/NF 2014) director Erlingsson's impressive followup (critics say) stars stars Halldora Geirharosdottir, say Jordan Mintzer in his Hollywood Reporter review, "as an ecological 'terrorist' who sabotages her country’s power grid in order to preserve its breathtaking landscapes." The lead carries out coups against the power grid, then disappears back into her conventional identity as a Reykjavik choir leader, and the excitement amps up as the film unreels. Sounds watchable, and more marketable than Erlandsson's first feature (there was a doc in between we don't know about). In his Variety review, Jay Weissberg calls this movie "delightful," and says it is "bound to be one of the hot sellers at this year's Cannes." Given the limited, oddball quality of his first feature, this would have to be a whole lot different for all that to be true, I'd guess. But that this is more marketable, that I can readily believe.

    Girl (Lukas Dhont).

    (Shown in Un Certain Regard).
    This debut film by a Flemish (Belgian) director focuses on a transgender girl who comes to Ghent to become a ballet dancer. This is a star-making performance" by lead Victor Polster, if the "emotional journey" remains too "interiorized," says Boyd van Hoeij in Hollywood Reporter, to make clear a surprise ending that'll likely be "one of the most talked about in Cannes this year," he says. With its focus on the physical in ballet for a character still "transitioning' to a girl, this may be one of the more vivid depictions of transgender experience. Director Lucas Dhont is very young, born in 1991. Transgender is a big topic now that was once not even mentioned. This would be interesting to see.


    Girl

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-16-2018 at 01:39 PM.

  11. #26
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    Ash Is Purest White

    Ash Is Purest White/江湖儿女/Jianghu er nv (Jia Zhang-Ke)

    (Shown in Competition.)
    Zhao Tao and Liao Fan star in Jia Zhang-ke's chronicle of the relationship between a low-level Chinese crook and the woman who goes to prison for him (David Rooney, Hollywood Reporter). It received a "mild standing ovation." Peter Bradshaw of the Guardian gave it 4/5 stars: "Jia Zhang-ke’s latest is an often glorious drama about how one woman’s journey from self-sacrificial moll to avenging criminal echoes her country’s embrace of capitalism." It received a "mild standing ovation." Davis Erlich in his Indiewirelreview found it "a long and melancholy rehash" of other better work by Jia. I will have to watch it and find out for myself.

    Alone at My Wedding/Seule a mon mariage (Marta Bergman).

    (Shown as part of the ACID (Association du Cinéma Indépendant pour sa Diffusion Cannes' newes, post-1993 sidebar)
    This debut French film describes how Pamela (Serban), a Roma woman, travels from Romania to Belgium to marry an older man she has met on the Internet - a mail order bride of sorts, though the wedding never takes place. She does go to Liege and lives with the guy, who is creepy, but she is so desperate for a better life she leaves a daughter behind for it. Jordan Mintzer's Hollywood Reporter review suggests this film is interesting, but a bit of a slog, more interesting early on than toward the end and 2 hours long.

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 09:59 AM.

  12. #27
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    Isabelle Adjani in The World Is Yours

    The World Is Yours/Le monde est à toi (Romain Gavras)

    (Shown in Directors' Fortnight.)
    This is a post-Tarantino "glossy, cynical caper comedy" without much originality but enough pizzazz, Jonathan Romney says in his ScreenDaily review, to guarantee interest, if not export potential, to this story that begins in a North African gangster quarter of Paris. Cast includes Vincent Cassel, Isabelle Adjani, A Prophet cast member Karim Leklou and popular Belgian star François Damiens. A glossy look provided by dp André Chémétoff (The Beach). "Wildly infectious," writes David Erlich, who names it a "Critic's Pick in his Indiewire review, calling it a "heist comedy" that's the "anti-Scarface." Some of the jokes may be too French to translate well, but it's all a lot of brisk fun. The great Adjani as a domineering gangster mom with ace safe-cracking skills is a cool idea, even if she doesn't quite come into her own (Romney). Jacky Goldberg of Les Inrockuptibles says Gavras' first film was "calamitous," but this one succeeds. Erlich calls it "the best movie that Guy Richie never made." I've never been a Richie fan, though, so I'm not sure.

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-14-2018 at 03:39 PM.

  13. #28
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    The Cannes main (Competition) Jury.



    Please see the Wikipedia article on 2018 Cannes juries. Click. There are really distinguished people heading other juries, Benicio del Toro Un Certain Regard, Ursula Meier Caméra d'Or, Bertrand Bonello Cinéfondation and short films, Joachim Trier International Critics' Week. This gives you an idea why this is the most important film festival in the world.

    Let's get to know the Cannes Competition Jury. There are a couple of others but this is the one everybody talks about. Fuss has been made over there being a female "majority," 5 ladies, 4 men. Not noticed here, but Taiwan had to complain because Taiwanese actor Chang Chen (3rd from right, top row) was identified by the Festival as "Chinese," they corrected that, then China told them to say he was from "Taiwan, China," and that didn't go over too well either.

    On the left: Cate Blanchett, a great actress of impressive talent and energy and also, a great head of jury who speaks well before an audience of journalists. She is from Australia. She speaks English. She is 48. She is the President of the Competition Jury.

    The rest in photo left to right:
    Top row: Khadja Nin, Chang Chen, Ave DuVarney, Denis Villeneuve
    Bottom row: Andrey Zvyagintsev, Léa Seydoux, Robert Guédiguian, Kristen Stewart


    Khadja Nin is a Barundian singer and musician, from Burundi, then Zaire, then Belgium. She is 58. she speaks French. (I had never heard of her.)
    Chang Chen as mentioned is a Taiwanese actor (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon). See above. I think in the conference he spoke Mandarin. He is 41.
    Ava DuVarney is an American director, producer, former publicist whose reputation has grown rapidly in the past four years. When she directed Middle of Nowhere (2012) nobody had heard of her. She has been in the news as a spokesperson for women since the Me Too movement. She is 45.
    Denis Villeneuve is a French-Canadian director whose international reputation has grown hugely just in the last six years so he has switched from French to more mainstream English-language pictures. He is 50.
    Andrey Zvyagintsev, now 54, is a distinguished Russian director of immense seriousness and accomplishment. His films, all in Russian and set in Russia, include The Return, Banishment, Elena, Leviathan and Loveless, last year's Cannes Jury Prize winner and Best Foreign Film Oscar. He speaks Russian.
    Léa Seydoux, 32, is descended from the two most powerful movie producing families of France. But she has won many awards and proven to be a brilliant and risk-taking actress as well as a beautiful one. In the last decade she has assembled a remarkable filmography though, to Americans, she may be relatively unknown. Her native language is French.
    Robert Guédiguian is a 64-year-old French film director, screenwriter, producer and actor. His films, often featuring a company of recurring actors, are not well known in the U.S. He is the oldest on the Jury.
    Kristen Stewart, who is 28, youngest on the Jury, is an American actress born in L.A. of a Hollywood family. Originally famous for starring in the "Twilight Saga," she has since burnished a Cannes reputation with Clouds of Sils Maria and Personal Shopper, both helmed by French auteur Olivier Assays. Like her "Twilight Saga" costar Robert Pattinson, she has proven to be a cool and sophisticated actor eager to work with serious, non-commercial directors.

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 10:03 AM.

  14. #29
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    Midway roundup. Preview of next week.

    Peter Bradshaw reviews the Cannes 2018 first-week films he likes today in a Guardian roundup piece. His choices are Ciro Guerra’s Birds of Passage, the Directors' Fortnight opener, the Embrace of the Serpent team's ethnograpahic history of the Colombian drug trade; Sergei Loznitsa’s Donbass, the Un Certain Regard opener, a grueling review of the Ukraine conflict, which he somehow found joyous, though he admits he probably couldn't rewatch it; A.B. Shawky’s Yomeddine, about a leper in Egypt, sweet but some thought saccharine; Kirill Serebrennikov's Leto, a whirling, rollicking Eighties rock epic, which he names as his favorite Competition film so far.

    Bradshaw chooses not to mention the Competition critical favorite Cold War, Pawel Pawlikowski's chilly, brilliant love story again in black and white by the maker of the universally admired 2013 Ida. Much of his roundup piece he spends talking about the Festival's (imperfect, incomplete) revamping of itself toward more edge and more sensitivity. The Guardian also has a list of important coming films next week. Here it is. This ime, big names prevail:
    BlacKkKlansman (Spike Lee; screening Tuesday)
    Spike Lee reckons he should have bagged the Palme d’Or for Do the Right Thing. Still smarting nearly 30 years on, he has another bite at the cherry with his fact-based account of an African American cop who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan. If he doesn’t win this time, the jury are advised to take cover.

    Dogman (Matteo Garrone; Wednesday)
    The Italian film-maker Matteo Garrone scored a breakout hit with 2008’s Gomorrah, and advance word suggests Dogman might be equally fine. Billed as an "urban western," it’s about a hapless dog groomer who takes on a psychotic former boxer who is terrorizing the neighborhood. We’re seeing this as High Noon by way of Best in Show.

    The House That Jack Built (Lars von Trier)
    Rocking up the Croisette like the prodigal son comes enfant terrible Lars von Trier. It’s seven years since the director was ejected from Cannes for jokingly saying he sympathised with Hitler, but don’t look to him to have reformed his disreputable ways. Von Trier’s latest is a serial killer story described by its creator as “a film that celebrates the idea that life is evil and soulless”.

    Happy As Lazzaro (Alice Rohrwacher; Monday)
    Still only 35, Italian film-maker Alice Rohrwacher is set for her second visit to Cannes with this class-divide fable charting the friendship between a small-town peasant and the local aristocrat. Rohrwacher won the Grand Prix (traditionally seen as Cannes’ silver medal) for The Wonders [Le meraviglie] [/I] back in 2014. She’ll be hoping to go one better this time.

    The Man Who Killed Don Quixote (Terry Gilliam; closing film, Saturday)
    Might Cannes yet provide a happy ending for Terry Gilliam? The director first attempted to shoot The Man Who Killed Don Quixote back in 2000. Now it appears he’s finally done it. Only last weekend Gilliam suffered a minor stroke. But he’s now out of hospital and determined to attend. He wouldn’t want to miss this premiere for the world.
    Happy Mother's Day!

    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 10:19 AM.

  15. #30
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    Late additions to Cannes 2018.

    This went up on Indiewire some time ago, actually, but all came since the opening announcement. But I was not aware of Fahrenheit 451 coming. It stars Michael B. Jordan and Michael Shannon and is an HBO film.

    Competition
    Knife + Heard (Yann Gonzalez)
    Akya (Sergey Dvortsevoy)
    The Wild Pear (Nuri Bilge Ceylan)

    Out of Competition
    The House That Jack Built (Lars von Trier)- we already knew

    Un Certain Regard
    Meurs, monstre, meurs/Murder Me, Monster (Alejandro Fadel)
    The Dead and the Others (João Salaviza, Renée Nader Messora)
    Donbass (Sergey Loznitsa) - we already knew

    Midnight
    Whitney (Kevin Macdonald)
    Fahrenheit 451 (Ramin Bahrani) (HBO)
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 05-13-2018 at 03:38 PM.

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