Tonight was the closing night of the festival. The Croisette is already being overtaken by people in swimming suits instead tuxedos and flip flops are taking over high heels.
The last day of the festival is when all of the films in competitions are re-run. We took advantage of that opportunity to finally catch up on the films we had been wanting to see.
Looking back on the films in competition, we noticed that there were many films that expose deep social problems. It was to the extent that two different journalists who interviewed us asked the same question: How do you feel watching all those glamorous people in their very expensive outfits going to see films about poverty, despair and injustice?
In that sense, and this we heard from several festival goers, the selection of this year was very much within the traditional festival selection whereas there was a lot of attention paid to social issues. Many of the films in the selection were also described as “slow burning” dramas.
Many of the films we got a chance to see had the central theme of “small people making big choices.” This was particularly interesting for us to note since it means that this kind of theme – similar to what we have in our Three Stories of Galicia – attracts attention.
Our favorite film Of Gods and Men got the grand jury prize and – of course – the only film we wanted to see and didn’t get the chance to – Uncle Boonmee who can Recall his Past Lives – got the Palme d’Or.
At the end of our day, while looking for a restroom, we got through a back door and found ourselves right outside of the place where the press conference for the awarded films was taking place. Surprisingly, we didn’t get kicked out – and by now we know from experience that security guards are not the friendliest over here. We got to see Gael Garcia Bernal, Javier Bardem and Juliette Binoche among others and even managed to snap a few pictures.
Cannes lesson #27: journalists have tough elbows and no problems stepping on your toes when it comes to interviewing the stars. Don’t wear sandals!
More about our screenings and our takeaways from Cannes in the next post…