It looks like the folks over at IFC were working their chequebooks pretty hard last week at the Cannes Film Festival, coming back home with an armload of films.
First up, the Sundance Selects division has picked up two Cannes award winners, Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne's Grand Prix awarded "The Kid With The Bike" and Maïwenn's Jury Prize winning "Poliss." The former is another familiar slice-of-life-drama from the Belgian directors, and while that was a knock against the film by many on the Croisette, the bottom line is that it's a wonderful piece of work, and perhaps the sunniest movie the duo have made in their careers. It boasts strong performances from both Cecile de France and the young newcomer Thomas Doret, and it's one we called "complex, beautiful and soulful." The latter is a documentary style drama, based on actual cases of the Child Protection Unit of the French police force. So yeah, it's a little "Law & Order"-esque and while we thought its reach was greater than its grasp, there were many at Cannes who loved the picture through and through.
Over at IFC Midnight, they've nabbed the divisive and much talked about Aussie serial killer flick "Snowtown." Based on a true story the film tracks a teenager as he is brought into the sadistic world of the notorious killer John Bunting. We called the film uneven, but mesmerizing and disturbing nonetheless and it certainly stirred up strong emotions at Cannes. The screening we attended had a wave of walkouts, while we heard that at another screening, audience members banged their seats in disgust at the film. However, the Critic's Week jury awarded the film a special citation which seems about a right for the movie that was easily the most talked about of the sidebar.
No release dates have been set for the film, but we all figure they'll hit before the end of the year.