Joan's Cannes 2017 blog - Day 1

Posted 22 May 2017


Cannes is nothing if not controversial...

This year's controversy relates to the ongoing industry debate about Video On Demand and subscription services. After Cannes Film Festival announced that they wouldn't allow films into competition that weren't going to receive a cinema release in France the long-time argument rose to the surface once again. One of the films in contention is the latest from Bong Joon Ho, OJKA, which opened to boos and hisses yesterday morning and after the jury president Pedro Almodóvar stated that he is disinclined to award films that are going straight to Netflix, looks set to leave empty handed. 

From my perspective, it is a real shame that people won't be able to see the film widely on it's release. It is a really enjoyable watch, more accessible than Snowpiercer and with wonderful Super Pigs to win over the coldest of hearts. I'm sure people will seek it out on Netflix but it really benefits from the big screen experience. In the UK it looks set to have a very limited release in cinemas so there may be a chance still to see it large. 

My favourite film so far, LOVELESS, from Russian director Andrey Zvyagintsev (Laviathon) is as political a piece I have seen in a while. Ostensibly a story about a missing child this is a comment on Russian society, history and future. With fantastically cold performances from both parents and authority alike the mystery almost becomes about why all the children haven't run away from home or disappeared. Beautiful photography captures the beauty and bleakness of their surroundings, and with an absolutely brilliant score this plays out as a thriller, with tension high from the start. 

Tod Hayne's WONDERSTRUCK is his highly awaited follow up to CAROL. With two of the best actors out there, Michelle Williams and Julianne Moore, this really set the red carpet alight when it premiered. Based on a young adult novel, this film would certainly suit a young adult audience to a tee. It is magical and beautiful, with stories that young people will absolutely be able to identify with. For me, it was a bit too sentimental, but I enjoyed it none the less and I'm sure it will play well to audiences in the UK. The role of deafness in the story is also something to highlight, with two deaf children's stories playing out across time it may be the first time that deafness has been so present in such a mainstream film. 

joan parsons

Joan Parsons

Senior Programmer and Showcomotion Festival DirectorRead more posts by Joan Parsons


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