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Cannes 2016: The Student showcases the ugly side of Bible verses

22 May, 2016 Posted in: Cannes, Cannes, Festivals, Opinion, Review

Kirill Serebrennikov’s Un Certain Regard entry The Student boasts a brilliant central performance from Pyotr Skvortsov.

Pyotr Skvortsov in The Student

Cannes 2016 has been defined by a number of extraordinary performances. Sandra Hüller, in German comedy Tony Erdmann, from director Maren Ade, gave what was for my money one of the finest, outdone by only Isabelle Huppert in the late-screening Competition entry Elle, from Paul Verhoeven. Likewise, Kristen Stewart continues to prove her Twilight-era critics wrong, creating a fascinatingly frosty …

Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe team up for The Nice Guys

20 May, 2016 Posted in: Cannes, Cannes, Festivals, Opinion, Review

Playing out of Competition in Cannes, Catherine Bray checks out Shane Black’s The Nice Guys, a buddy comedy about two guys who aren’t exactly buddies.

Shane Black’s The Nice Guys

So, time for a total change of pace. After a while, when you’ve mused on the gently poetry of Jim Jarmusch (Paterson) and marveled at the exquisite control and restraint of Cristian Mungiu (Graduation), you want nothing more than to relax with an action-comedy. It’s like being good to yourself and …

Cannes 2016: Cristian Mungiu’s Graduation is impeccably constructed

20 May, 2016 Posted in: Cannes, Cannes, Festivals, Opinion, Review

Catherine Bray catches Romanian auteur Cristian Mungiu’s Cannes Competition film Graduation, a minor but riveting morality play.

Cristian Mungiu’s Graduation


For Cannes audiences with hopes pinned on Cristian Mungiu to deliver another knock-out blow of the kind he achieved with Beyond the Hills and 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days, his latest, Graduation, playing in Competition at the 69th Cannes Film Festival, may qualify as something of a disappointment. I have to say, I was riveted by this slow-burn precision …

Cannes 2016: Gimme Danger (dir. Jim Jarmusch)

19 May, 2016 Posted in: Cannes, Cannes, Documentaries, Review

Michael Leader catches the Cannes premiere of Jim Jarmusch’s documentary chronicling the career of The Stooges…

What a treat! Not one, but two new films from independent cinema deity Jim Jarmusch in the Official Selection at Cannes. The first was Paterson, which Film4’s Catherine Bray reviewed earlier this week, and here’s the flip-side, a rousing documentary about proto-punk pioneers The Stooges.

Formed in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1967 by former jobbing drummer James Osterberg (aka Iggy Pop), brothers Ron …

Cannes 2016: a mid-fest treat in the form of Paterson

18 May, 2016 Posted in: Cannes, Cannes, Festivals, Opinion, Review

Catherine Bray falls for Jim Jarmusch’s quietly charming Competition entry Paterson, starring Adam Driver.

Adam Driver stars as Paterson

Jim Jarmusch films are a bit of an unknown quantity for me – sometimes I want to throw things at the screen because it all seems so unbearably precious, and at other times, I’m utterly seduced by his worldview and characters. Paterson, a gently charming film about a poet/bus driver played by Adam Driver, called Paterson, who lives in Paterson, falls into …