A Vintage Cannes - Part 2
Ken Loach's highly entertaining The Angels' Share is the only British/Scottish title in Competition at Cannes this year. Patriotic film-goers can take heart from the fact there is a strong British presence in other sections of Cannes which have announced their programme selections this week. Former actor and theatre director Rufus Norris makes his feature film debut with Broken which opens Critics' Week. Based on the novel by Daniel Clay it tells of a young girl in North London whose life changes when she witnesses a violent attack. A strong cast includes Tim Roth and Cillian Murphy and the music comes courtesy of a promising young chap called Damon Albarn.
You may recall that Glasgow Film Festival screened Ben Wheatley's eye-catching Down Terrace a couple of years back. Since then Wheatley has gone from strength to strength with his award-winning Kill List last year and this year his new film Sightseers will have a special screening in Directors' Fortnight. Described as a very black romantic comedy it features a young couple on a caravan holiday whose idyllic break degenerates into a killing spree. We've all been there.
Both Critics' Week and Directors' Fortnight are bursting with enticing international titles that could wind up screening at a cinema near you. There are seven features in competition at Critics' Week, all of them are directed by men and none of them are from America. Highlights include Indian thriller Peddlers, Los Salvajes from Argentina and Israeli-French co-production Les Voisins de Dieu a 'theological action film' and you don't get many of them to the pound. The four European titles include Belgian drama Beyond the Walls/Hors les murs (say it swiftly and it could be a pop star) from director David Lambert which follows young pianist Pablo as he leaves his girlfriend to pursue a romance with Albanian bass player Illir.
There are oodles of potential goodies in Directors' Fortnight which opens with Michel Gondry's fantasy The We and the I in which a group of schoolchildren travel into the future and closes with Noemie Lvovsky's Camille redouble/Camille Rewinds in which a middle-aged woman travels back in time to her teenage years. Sounds like a lot of filmmakers have been watching Francis Ford Coppola's Peggy Sue Got Married.
The first Directors' Fortnight under former critic Edouard Waintrop also includes Rodney Ascher's Room 237, an acclaimed documentary on the meaning of Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, Yeun Sang-ho's school bullying drama The King of Pigs, No from director Pablo Larrain set during Augusto Pinochet's 1988 referendum and starring Gael Garcia Bernal and Udaan director Anurag Kashyap returns with epic gangster film Gangs of Wasseypur set in India's coal capital Dhanbad.
The challenge now is to see as many of these titles as possible and secure some of the cream of the crop for screening at GFT and the 2013 Glasgow Film Festival. The dates of the latter are February 14-24, 2013. Never too early to put them in your diary!
Co-director, Glasgow Film Festival