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Quick Reactions to the Cannes Lineup.

by Eric Kohn
April 15, 2010 2:12 AM
2 Comments
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Gregg Araki and Jean Luc Godard are both premiering new movies at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival.

This morning, indieWIRE editor-in-chief Eugene Hernandez sent out a questionnaire to various critics and others involved in the industry to gauge their immediate reactions to today's announcement of the Cannes lineup. Here are my brief responses in full. Eugene will publish a survey of various reactions later today.

Will you please share a few immediate reactions to the lineup?
Put simply, it looks like a Cannes lineup. The individual projects are less immediately interesting than the individuals behind them. That said, with Doug Liman's "Fair Game" as the only American movie in competition this year, the festival seems poised to have far less star power driving the hype on the Croisette. Also, I think a big story will revolve around filmmakers equipped with the ability to work at their own pace, rather than crank out product after product in the hopes of being prolific. We haven't heard from either Jean Luc Godard or Gregg Araki, whose legacies come from radically different categories of film history, in quite some time.

What are you excited about?
Cannes is all about hyping the auteurs. It's not all about the hype, but it would be nothing without the hype, either. So: I'm excited for the Lee Chang Dong, the Apichatpong Weerasethakul, the Mike Leigh, the Kiarostami, the Hong Sang-soo, the Araki and the Godard. Those fellas rarely let me down. Xavier Dolan's first feature was very promising and it's surprising to see that he's already got another one ready to go. He's young enough to withstand a bomb, but it's probably not a bomb.

Surprises?
Where's the epic new Terrence Malick movie? What a surprise, indeed -- the man whose obsessive style led him to yank "The New World" out of theaters and recut it for a mangled second release is having issues with timing. That's fine; Malick needs his creative space, perhaps more than any other filmmaker alive, and his latest endeavor sounds like a doozy. Maybe they can squeeze it in at the last moment.

Also, I can't decide if I'm relieved or ticked about the absence of that sprawling three-part Olivier Assayas terrorist movie we've been hearing about.

Other comments or thoughts?
Cannes is a rush. The environment makes it tough for critics to make snap judgments in the heat of the moment, as evidenced by last year's abrupt dismissal of "Inglourious Basterds." Given the track record of many, many competitors this year, I only hope I can remain level-headed enough to figure out what's what. By that same token, with so many big names in flux, it's worth wondering which ones are the bombs. I won't issue any public guesses right now, but the cynicism will probably come hard and fast around the mid-point, as critics let loose a collective sigh and reflect the title of Mike Leigh's latest: "Another Year."

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2 Comments

  • Seth Willenson | April 16, 2010 7:19 AMReply

    there was always something ironic going to the fortnight at the NOGA
    Hilton. It looks to me like Cannes has gotten some of the intelectual
    intensity that it had in the 1970's.

    It has always been legitimately exploitative but became overwhelmed in recent years

  • Angelina Veritas | April 15, 2010 10:19 AMReply

    Happen to notice that the Cannes committee did not deem ANY woman director worthy of competition?
    Not ONE woman, on the face of the earth, belongs in that line up?
    Vraiment?

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