Refuge in the past, prevented loves, and metaphors around artistic creation are three major themes that have crossed the films presented on the Croisette. As if to better paint the picture of an era imbued with great anxiety.
After ten days of screenings and 21 films examined from every angle, the jury of the 75th Cannes Film Festival, chaired by Vincent Lindon and gathered under the arch of the Grand Théâtre Louis-Lumière for the traditional closing ceremony, handed over a copy of particularly messy, more inclined to the defense of great causes and massive subjects than to that of great films. Symptomatic, the Palme d’Or goes this year, and for the second time after The Square (2017), to Swede Ruben Östlund for Triangle of Sadness ( Without the filter, in French), a sardonic farce vomiting up the contemporary era. The director propels a sample of bloated and botoxed ultra-rich on a luxury yacht, for a cruise tossed by the storm and culminating in a carnival of excrement. After having settled their account with these specimens of a force-fed neo-capitalism, Östlund orchestrates, by way of antithesis, the mutiny of a cleaning lady, exerting on the passengers a dictatorship of the proletariat hardly more enviable. Cynicism, therefore, reigns at all levels and it is he, this evening, who finds himself awarded.
The rest of the prize list zigzags between colorful works, as a Grand Prix shared equally between Close, by Lukas Dhont, and Des étoiles à midi, by Claire Denis. In the first, the young 31-year-old Belgian director films the fusional friendship of two boys, with sweeping country tracking shots and bursts of naturalness before everything is tragically shattered by the normative gaze of their classmates. After the revelation of Girl, distinguished by the Camera d’Or in 2018, Dhont continues his examination of the social fabric of gender and the decompartmentalization of rigid masculinity. Claire Denis, for her part, transports herself to a Nicaragua on the brink of civil war to depict the wavering passion of two foreigners, against a backdrop of industrial espionage. Curiously out of phase, this fiction on expatriate desire never finds its embodiment.