Sunday, May 24, 2015

Cannes 2015 Logbook: Days 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11

Another festival has come to an end and I'm going to wrap up my logbook here, though do watch out for reviews over the coming week. I've admittedly been a bit held back with all the goings on of the festival, so I've ended up with a load of unfinished reviews piled up, but as I said, they should all be up and out soon enough!

So on Day 7 I saw Maïwenn' My King, about a young woman who after a skiing accident is sent to a rehabilitation centre to learn how to walk again. During this time, she looks back on her passionate 10 year relationship with her ex-husband. I really enjoyed this film, though I don't know how well it'll do outside of France. Vincent Cassel was strangely charming, even when he was playing an asshole of a husband.

The next day I saw Gaspar Noé's hotly anticipated 'sexual melodrama' Love at its midnight premiere. It's not in competition, but was shown as a special screening like Amy. After being asked multiple times whether or not I was actually old enough to see it due to its explicit content, I finally managed to push my way in. I've never been in such a massive, tightly packed queue! Mostly it was just sex scene after sex scene with no real plot, and the main character was really unlikeable. I left not long before it finished after having nodded off midway through, so you can imagine how engaging it was. Granted, the use of 3D was pretty funny for the occasional few shots, but otherwise it was just a gimmick to add to the shock factor.

I also saw Valérie Donzelli's Marguerite and Julien, another film in competition, about an incestuous relationship between a brother and sister based off the experience of a real family in the 1600's. It had a really whimsical, melodramatic feel to it and wasn't set in any particular historic period, in fact it toyed with that quite a bit stylistically. After the screening I heard a lot of people expressing their disinterest in it, though I found myself quite involved in the story and very drawn in. This wasn't the case, however with Hou Hsiao Hsien's The Assassin. I was so disappointed with this film after everything I'd heard about it! Aesthetically it was breathtaking, but unfortunately the plot just didn't hold up enough to make it very interesting. Despite all the positive things I'd heard about it, it didn't get at all the same kind of reaction when I went to see it. A lot of people walked out early, and out of those that didn't, many people said they fell asleep during! So I wasn't the only person to find The Assassin quite dull.

On Saturday, I saw my final film, Mark Osborne's beautiful film based off of Albert De Saint Exupery's beloved book The Little Prince. I was so happy to end the festival with this film as I'd been looking forward to seeing it all week and it didn't disappoint. It was a little different than I expected it would be, but it worked really well. The animation was a mixture of CGI and stop motion animation which was absolutely gorgeous. I stayed til' the very end credits because I was so content with what I'd just seen, it's really uplifting, a lovely feel good film to bring my time at Cannes this year to a close.