Cannes 2024 - Day 7: Cronenberg's grave, Audiard's interview, Ghibli's celebration

Cannes 2024 – Day 7: Cronenberg's grave, Audiard's interview, Ghibli's celebration

Every day, the hot spot live from the 77th Cannes Film Festival.

Film of the day: The Shrouds by David Cronenberg (in competition)

Cronenberg, the return, act 2. He announced his retirement after Maps to the Stars, in 2014, but ultimately decided to return to cinema – even as his body-horror offspring jostle today on the steps of Cannes (from Titanium from Ducournau to The Substance by Coralie Fargeat). In Crimes of the Future, in 2022, he presented himself as an aging body artist, in the guise of the alter-ego Viggo Mortensen. Even more personal, even more intimate, even more autobio, The Shrouds (The Shrouds in VO) was inspired by the death of his wife.

Vincent Cassel (revamped as Cronenberg, with his white hair standing on end and his zen intellectual lifestyle living in the clouds of Toronto) plays a funeral director from the future who has invented technology to observe decomposition in real time bodies of his deceased loved ones. Cronenberg thinks about religion, technology, conspiracy, in the same “extinct”, stripped down (= a little razor) form as that of Crimes of the Future : long scenes of atonal bla-bla in the service of a somewhat vague paranoid thriller plot. The filmmaker barely pretends to believe his pretext story.

Nonetheless: what he says and shows about the work of mourning, about the relationship between the living and the torn bodies of the sick and the deceased, is a little moving – largely thanks to the erotic and intrepid performance of Diane Kruger, in a dual role as twins, dead and alive at the same time.

Today's interview: Jacques Audiard for Emilia Perez

Do you like musicals?

No way. I don't have that kind of culture in any case. I like the musicals of Bob Fosse or Demy, but I don't really like the 30s side, Busby Berkeley or post-war Hollywood productions.

It’s paradoxical, because a few years ago, you mentioned the desire to make a musical about go fasts…

Yes, this idea goes back a long way indeed. In reality, what surprised me was that this project first came to me in the form of an opera. The first text on Emilia Perez that I wrote in 2019 was a booklet. The text was divided into acts, followed archetypal characters and espoused a singular temporality – as at the Opera – with many ellipses. And then, little by little, it became something else. I love opera, I'm a music lover, but again, I'm not a great connoisseur. It was a desire that crossed my mind at the time of my second film, A Very Discreet Hero. With Alexandre Desplat, we thought of producing a little opera based on the film, a bit like what Peter Brook had done with Carmen, The Threepenny Opera Or Nixon in China. There are traces of it in the film, in the form of a quintet. I think we were trying to find a more precise relationship with music.

How did the musical comedy genre allow you to tackle these subjects?

Once I had my subject, I had two options. Either I honestly stuck to the theme I had documented. And I was making a documentary (on transidentity or Mexico). Either I tried to transform this material into a drama, an epic which mixes all that, which mixes singing and music. One of the particularities that we quickly agreed on was that the songs had to belong to the body of the story itself, they had to move the story forward.

Like at Demy?

Yes exactly. My reference film is this great film about the Algerian war which is Umbrellas of Cherbourg. In Emilia Perezwe don't put on airs, we say things that are important for the story and not just moods.

In West Side Story there are tunes, but they say things about society…

One thing troubles me greatly in this film – the first version, like the Spielberg. To me, this is a complete cinematic slip of the tongue. There is not a black person! It's 1960, in the middle of the civil rights march and there is not a single black person on the screen. It's surprising, isn't it? This is a production that makes an incredible slip of the tongue, and a deliberate slip of the tongue.

Jacques Audiard: “Emilia Perez is a transgender film”

Video of the day: Ghibli's Honorary Palme d'Or

What if the event of the day in Cannes was the celebration of Ghibli? The Grand Théâtre Lumière was a full house for the Honorary Palme d'Or that Juan Antonio Bayona came to present to his son Miyazaki. Cherry on the cake, the patriarch recorded a very funny video message and four new short films normally reserved for the Studio Museum in Japan were screened. A geek's dream that we were able to witness live.

Performance of the day: Jeremy Strong in The Apprentice

For his first American feature film, Iranian Ali Abbasi (Un Certain Regard Prize for Border and rewarded with the Zar Amir Ebrahimi interpretation prize for The Nights of Mashhad) attacks neither more nor less the figure of Donald Trump… a few months before an election which could give him back the keys to the White House. An inflated bet where, by bringing to the screen the scenario of journalist Gabriel Sherman, Abbasi focuses on his years of apprenticeship which will lead him to make his fortune with a lot of shenanigans of all kinds. A success story American style, who could have made him a hero if Abbasi had not succeeded in making people understand the limitless violence (crass homophobia, marital rape, etc.) of a man without faith or law… other than his own.

And if Sebastian Stan does the job perfectly as Trump from the 80s, the one who bursts the screen is called Jeremy Strong with his insane interpretation of another competitive scumbag, Roy Cohn. The lawyer who was one of the pillars of McCarthyism and decisive in the death sentence of the Rosenberg couple before therefore being the one who changed the destiny of Trump by taking him under his wing. Damned soul who will then be overtaken and then rejected by his student, when this homosexual who had publicly… condemned homosexuality slowly died of AIDS. The Kendall Roy of Succession impresses as much in Cohn's moments of flamboyance as in his decline. A supporting role performance award? Chick!

The revelation of the day: Antoine Chevrollier, the director of The Pampas (Critics Week)

A long, very long ovation filled with tears concluded yesterday morning the screening of the only French film in competition at Critics' Week. A welcome worthy of its success! At the helm, Antoine Chevrollier, who cut his teeth on The Legends Office and created the series Oussekinesigns his first feature film A coming of age set in the Maine et Loire village of his birth where the revelation of the homosexuality of a teenager, a motocross star, will disrupt, with great violence, the daily life of the place.

Like Jean-Baptiste Durand with Dog of the breakage, with whom he shares this ability not to confuse realism and naturalism, Chevrollier acutely recounts the idleness of the youth of these French countryside, invisible on the big screen. But he also embraces the virilism at work, the excesses of a kingly patriarchy and a toxic masculinity which makes it impossible to live out one's homosexuality in broad daylight. All with an incredible sense of romance and a writing of characters and situations that constantly takes his story far from the beaten track. Like its casting, symbolized by the presence of Artus in a role far from his usual job, the ambiguities of which he embodies in a perfect blend of sensitivity and finesse.

While his A little something extra has just crossed the threshold of 3 million entries, he is experiencing a month of May that he will not soon forget!

Today in Cannes

Big day for the competition, with four highly anticipated films. The event of the day will perhaps be the screening of Maria by Jessica Palud, where Anamaria Vartolomei plays Maria Schneider during the traumatic filming of Last tango in Paris. The media world is already preparing to release its articles. We're also waiting around the corner for Matt Dillon who plays Marlon Brando.

But there is also Parthenopethe new Paolo Sorrentino, who takes his name from one of the sirens who enchanted Ulysses during his journey – and one of the tutelary deities of the city of Naples, and for the director of The Great Bellezza, the story of the life of a Neapolitan woman from the 1950s to the present day. In short, FC Sorrentino has already released the jerseys.

Also in competition for the Palme, Christophe Honoré will dress Chiara Mastroianni in the outfit of her illustrious father Marcello Mastroianni in Marcello Mio – yes, it's a very difficult subject, plus there's Catherine Deneuve, but Honoré has often gotten away with worse things (Love songsFrench musical 2.0 before it was cool).

The Fortnight for The Florida Projectthe competition for Red RocketSean Baker couldn't move to L2 with his next film: don't panic, Anora is in the running for the prize list. the story of a New York prostitute who is going to marry the son of a Russian oligarch – and the pretty woman is Mikey Madison, member of the Manson Family in OUATIH of QT and one of the suspects of Scream (the fifth) who was only waiting for a Sean Baker-style film to confirm all the good things we think of her.

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