France, Spain and the USA rule the roost in Un Certain Regard
by Fabien Lemercier
- Bruno Dumont, Christophe Honoré and Albert Serra are the biggest names in a selection of 15 titles, including eight feature debuts and seven movies by female directors
Unveiled today in Paris, just like the entirety of the Official Selection (see the article) of the 72nd Cannes Film Festival (14-25 May), the Un Certain Regard programme contains 15 features for the time being, a figure that is likely to creep up slightly in the next few days. And in keeping with previous editions, Thierry Frémaux is putting the emphasis on youth and increased female participation, as the line-up includes eight feature debuts and will showcase the work of seven female directors.
Nevertheless, several highly renowned filmmakers are the brightest beacons in the display case, particularly France’s Bruno Dumont (Special Mention for the Caméra d’Or on the Croisette in 1997; he has taken part in the Cannes competition three times, winning two Grand Prix into the bargain, and he is now making a return to Un Certain Regard, where he presented Hors Satan [+see also:
film profile] in 2011), who will present the sequel to Jeannette, The Childhood of Joan of Arc [+see also:
interview: Bruno Dumont
film profile] (unveiled in the Directors’ Fortnight in 2017), Joan of Arc [+see also:
film profile], which boasts a completely different style.
Also standing out on the line-up is his fellow countryman Christophe Honoré, who has already taken part in the quest for the Palme d’Or twice (including last year) and who has popped up unexpectedly with his new title, On a Magical Night. The presence of this film was not widely expected, since the shoot only wrapped on 19 March.
Lastly, the French contingent in Un Certain Regard is rounded off by an animated film: The Swallows of Kabul [+see also:
film profile] by Zabou Breitman and Eléa Gobbe-Mevellec (see the news), an adaptation of the novel of the same name by Yasmina Khadra, which was co-produced by Switzerland and Luxembourg.
European cinema is also in contention thanks to two Spanish films helmed by two appealing and highly personal auteurs: Liberté by the unpredictable Albert Serra (who enjoyed a Special Screening in the Cannes Official Selection in 2016 with his Last Days of Louis XIV [+see also:
interview: Albert Serra
film profile], and who participated in the Directors’ Fortnight in 2006 and 2008, as well as winning the Golden Leopard at Locarno in 2013) and Fire Will Come [+see also:
film profile] by Óliver Laxe (Grand Prize in the Cannes Critics’ Week in 2016 with Mimosas [+see also:
interview: Oliver Laxe
film profile], after having risen to prominence in the Directors’ Fortnight in 2010 with the documentary You All Are Captains [+see also:
The Continent will also be represented by the majority French production Papicha [+see also:
film profile], the feature debut by Mounia Meddour (which also sees the involvement of Algeria – the filmmaker’s home country – Belgium and Qatar). Fresh, youthful cinema from North Africa is also invited to the party thanks to the selection of another feature debut: Adam by Maryam Touzani (an actress and the co-writer of Razzia [+see also:
interview: Nabil Ayouch
film profile] by Nabil Ayouch), a movie produced by Morocco, France and Belgium.
Also of note are Beanpole [+see also:
film profile] by Russia’s Kantemir Balagov (his second feature, following the very promising Closeness [+see also:
film profile], unveiled in Un Certain Regard in 2017) and the feature debut Homeward by Ukraine’s Nariman Aliev.
While the rest of Europe is totally absent from the programme (at least for the time being), North America has a strong presence with four titles (all feature debuts), helmed by female US directors Danielle Lessovitz and Annie Silverstein, their fellow countryman Michael Covino and Canada’s Monia Chokri.
Lastly, this snapshot of global diversity is topped off by a South American film (by Brazil’s Karim Aïnouz) and two Asian ones (directed by Taiwan’s Midi Z and China’s Zu Feng).
Here is the full list of titles announced so far:
Un Certain Regard
A Brother's Love - Monia Chokri (Canada) (opening film)
The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão - Karim Aïnouz (Brazil/Germany)
Homeward - Nariman Aliev (Ukraine)
Beanpole [+see also:
film profile] - Kantemir Balagov (Russia)
The Swallows of Kabul [+see also:
film profile] - Zabou Breitman, Eléa Gobé Mévellec (France/Switzerland/Luxembourg)
The Climb - Michael Covino (US)
Joan of Arc [+see also:
film profile] - Bruno Dumont (France)
On a Magical Night - Christophe Honoré (France/Belgium/Luxembourg)
Fire Will Come [+see also:
film profile] - Óliver Laxe (Spain/France/Luxembourg)
Port Authority - Danielle Lessovitz (US)
Papicha [+see also:
film profile] - Mounia Meddour (France/Belgium/Algeria)
Liberté - Albert Serra (Spain/France/Portugal)
Bull - Annie Silverstein (US)
Adam - Maryam Touzani (Morocco/France/Belgium/Qatar)
Nina Wu (Zhuo ren mi mi) - Midi Z (Taiwan)
Summer of Changsha - Zu Feng (China)
(Translated from French)
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