The last tidbits from Cannes are still rolling in, even as the Croisette itself now looks like the opening scenes of “28 Days Later” (presumably). Last to screen in the Palme d'Or competition, and hence the focus of various final press appearances, was Olivier Assayas' “Clouds of Sils Maria," which has had a mixed but interested reception: it ultimately failed to pick up any prizes, and Playlister Jessica Kiang seems to think that was fair.
Friday at Cannes saw the film gets its big press conference, featuring Assayas, stars Juliette Binoche and Chloë Grace Moretz (somewhat teased with an intro that focuses on her MTV Awards arising from the “Kick-Ass” franchise), supporting player Lars Eidinger and the film's producer. Notably absent was the film's other big player, Kristen Stewart, but you can insert your own joke about her being too laid-back to make it.
In the film, Binoche plays an actress facing the middle of her career, so there's some meta-reflection from Binoche on her long history at Cannes—she became a star in 1985 when “Rendez-vous” premièred there—and her ever-evolving approach to acting. She dominates the press conference and is pleasingly willing to push back on certain questions, making for a weird contrast with Moretz, who aged all of 17 has entirely mastered the press-conference gush about the brilliance of colleagues, scripts, projects, etc. But hey, Binoche was probably doing the same thing 30 years ago. As “Clouds of Sils Maria” points out, we all need some time to mature.