The latter half of Cannes has brought a fest favorite to the fore. With a bold three-hour running time, French director Abdellatif Kechiche's "Blue Is the Warmest Color," starring Lea Seydoux and relative newcomer Adele Exarchopoulous, is receiving raves for its daring, intimate portrayal of a teen lesbian romance. And one more thing: the film contains "the most explosively graphic lesbian sex scenes in recent memory."
But I’m afraid Gray has let Cotillard down, in that he hasn’t guided her performance in the way that, say, Olivier Dahan did in "La Vie En Rose," or even Jacques Audiard in "Rust And Bone." I never felt that I had a firm grip on who Eva was, and some of Gray’s creative decisions regarding where to swell the saccharine score and frame the close-ups almost felt like something you’d see on Funny Or Die, a spoof on how to manufacture an Oscar-winning performance.
Alexander Payne's "Nebraska," starring Bruce Dern and Will Forte as a father and son embarking on a roadtrip, screened today at Cannes. The response is thus far mixed to positive, with praise for the film's wistful tone and a "career-crowning" performance from Dern. Those less impressed site the film's slightness, calling it "affably unexceptional" and that it provides "not much to talk about."
As empty, soulless, frenziedly art-directed viewing experiences go, "Only God Forgives" is one of the better examples.
If "Behind the Candelabra" is his final film, it's a winner, easily among the best of his 26 features including Cannes contenders "King of the Hill" (1993) and the six-hour, two part "Che" (2008) as well as "Erin Brockovich," "Out of Sight," the lucrative "Ocean's" franchise and "Traffic," for which he won the best director Oscar.
Confession: going into "The Bling Ring," opening film for this year’s Un Certain Regard, I was hopeful that I’d find the Sofia Coppola of "Marie Antoinette" rather than the Sofia Coppola of "Somewhere" parked behind the camera.
Honestly, I root for James Franco, but he exhausts with his incessant need to produce every little thought into something for our consumption. His recent art exhibition in Berlin included some fairly lame paintings he did in college of his high school yearbook photos; you know, things like sitting on the bleachers at a swim meet. Yes, of course that’s better than the guy who sits on his ass and never produces anything. Although after Franco you begin to appreciate that lazy guy.
The director makes two choices right off the top: a split screen, and a pallet that lies somewhere between puke green and puke brown.
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