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Yes Not Maybe So: Bombshell

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Entries in France (27)

Saturday
May272017

Cannes Look-back: "The Class"

As we await the Cannes closing ceremony with all its awards glamour, let's take a look back at a previous Palme winner which has connections to a competition entry this year.  Here's John Guerin...

The Class, Laurent Cantet’s 2008 Palme d’Or winner, left me both exhausted and inspired. An autobiographical chronicle of François Bégaudeau’s first year of teaching French language and literature at an inner-city high school in Paris, The Class is an entirely self-contained glimpse into the daily challenges, joys, dead-ends, nuisances, amusements, and tensions in one especially spirited classroom. Although The Class is spatially confined to the school building, the currents of the outside world frequently wash ashore and brush up against Bégaudeau’s attempts to lead a discussion of the imperfect tense or find meaning in The Diary of Anne Frank or do just about anything constructive.

Cantet and Bégaudeau, with the assistance of co-writer and editor Robin Campillo (director of the underrated 2013 Eastern Boys and this year's Queer Palme winner 120 Beats per Minute), smartly avoid clichés of the Exasperated Teacher genre and opts instead for ambivalence over didacticism; there is no breakthrough in Bégaudeau’s attitude from frustration to satisfaction, there is seldom a transformation of student rancor into exuberance, there is no “saving” exactly, but the film doesn’t descend into cheap cynicism either... 

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Wednesday
May242017

Missing Italy

by Eric Blume

We’re not far from crowning a new Palme d’Or winner at the Cannes Film Festival, and part of the fun and excitement for international film lovers is seeing which country takes the top prize.  The last ten years has marked three winners from France (The Class, Blue is the Warmest Color, and Dheepan), and in fact France has won ten times since 1955 when the prize has been named the Palme d’Or (there was a ten year gap in 1964-74 where the top prize had a different name, for those into these technicalities).   

Winning just under that number, with nine trophies, remains Italy.  Once a mighty force on the international film scene, Italy seems to have fewer major filmmakers emerging.  The last Italian film to win the Palme d’Or at Cannes was Nanni Moretti’s film The Son’s Room in 2001...   

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Wednesday
May242017

Red Carpet Lineup: Cannes '17, French Actress Heaven

It's been a little overwhelming looking at all the gowns on display at Cannes but before we get 10 whole days behind, let's celebrate the Gallic glory of French actresses. The 70th Anniversary Cannes party that the festival threw itself in the middle of its week long party had the biggest collection of international stars imaginable including these nine giants of French cinema after the jump...

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Wednesday
May172017

Cannes Day 1: The Netflix Battle and "Ishmael's Ghost"

by Nathaniel R

Maren Ade, Will Smith, Agnes Jaoui, and Pedro Almodóvar at the Jury Press Conference today

Though we aren't in the South of France we'll try to keep an eye on the proceedings across the pond there these next two weeks. If you're relatively new to movie obsessing (We keep hoping more young people will tune in to TFE. We used to attract baby cinephiles... not sure where they congregate now!) Vox has a terrific heavily expository overview of why Cannes is so important, how to pronounce it ("can" not "cans" or "cahn"), why so many famous people go, why everyone is so dressed up, and some other myths and mysteries that surround the festival.

Jury Press Conference & the Netflix Divide
Because juicy click-bait headlines drive traffic most websites are framing the Jury Press Conference as a bloody war between the president Pedro Almodóvar and his most famous juror Will Smith. They may well eventually come to artistic blows in jury deliberations (who knows) but this is already grossly overstated. They merely have different feelings about Netflix, a famous "disruptor" as a company. Will Smith is very pro Netflix (basically because he has kids who like it). Almodóvar is very pro theatrical exhibition, because you know, he's a filmmaker who cares about movies. That's about the extent of the "war"...

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Saturday
May132017

Tweetweek: Pink Typography and Tough Pizza

Tweets of the Week. If we couldn't joke about movies the current political climate would be enough to drive us all off the ledge wouldn't it? So here are two tweets that most helped me get through the week by LOL'ing instead of crying.

After the jump: Depp's "technique", ongoing Kidmania, Jessica Chastain, Isabelle Huppert, flat earth, fun photos... and Dick

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Thursday
Apr132017

Cannes Line Up

by Nathaniel R

The Cannes lineup was announced very early this morning (time differences, don'cha know) and we're here to give you details, not just film titles. While TFE doesn't attend ($) we do follow from afar and hope to make the trek some day. The 70th Annual Cannes Film Festival runs May 17th through May 28th.

OPENING NIGHT

Which is a high profile gig but also risky as the knives are often out for a sacrifice to the festival gods to launch the cinextravaganza. 

Ismael’s Ghosts (Arnaud Desplechin)
French auteur Desplechin's latest will be released in the US by Magnolia. It stars French A-Listers Marion Cotillard, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Mathieu Amalric, and Louis Garrel and revolves around a filmmaker (Amalric) working on a new picture when his long dead lover Carlotta (Cotillard) returns to life sending his life into a tailspin. If you've never seen Desplechin classics Kings and Queen (2004) and A Christmas Tale (2008) get right to that!

THE COMPETITION LINEUP...

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