After much hype, the 71st Cannes Film Festival came to an end on Saturday, drawing its curtains on all the glitz and glamour. The event opened with Asghar Farhadi’s psychological thriller Everybody Knows, followed by many other awe-inspiring stories. Having stirred quite a hype, from strict restrictions issued prior to the event, to a historical move in solidarity for the women across the globe, it sure was an event that left a footprint on behalf of betterment.
The most prestigious award of the festival, Palme d’Or, was presented to Hirokazu Kore-eda from Japan by Cate Blanchett, for his much talked about film Shoplifters. It is the second time this century that an Asian film has won the festival’s top honor. Inspired from true events, Shoplifters is a family drama with a fair share of plot twists. It characterises a family who, while living on a grandmother’s insufficient pension, sends their children to steal from shops. During the ceremony, the delighted 55-year-old Kore-eda told the audience, “My legs are shaking. I’m really honored to be here. I want to share the courage and hope (that comes with the award) with my staff and the film’s cast as well as with young directors.” He also added, “I am hopeful that films can connect people who are in conflict in a separated world.”
The Grand Prix, the festival’s second most esteemed honor, went to American director Spike Lee for his blaxploitation themed satire, BlacKkKlansman, based on the true story of an African-American police officer who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan in the 1970s. “Cannes was the perfect launchpad for this film. I hope the film can globally get us out of our mental slumber, and start to get back to truth, goodness, love and not hate,” added the talented director.
Lebanon’s Nadine Labaki, a female director, won the Jury Prize for Capharnaum, a practical drama about a neglected child in the ghettos of Beirut. Pawel Pawlikowski from Poland bagged Best Director for Cold War, a romance drama set against the conditions of the Iron Curtain. The best screenplay went to Jafar Panahi, the controversial Iranian director and his co-writer Nader Saeivar for their film 3 Faces. It was also shared by Italian writer-director Alice Rohrwacher for Happy as Lazzaro.
Special Palme d’Or was given to Jean-Luc Godard, creator of The Image Book, who was absent as he did not attended Cannes since 2004 (it was accepted on his behalf). The best actress went to Ayka star Samal Yeslyamova, and the best actor went to Dogman actor Marcello Fonte. Camera d’Or for the best directorial debut went to Lukas Dhont, for Girl, a Belgian drama about a transgender teenager’s pursue to become a ballerina.
Palme d’Or: Shoplifters, Hirokazu Kore-eda
Grand Prix: BlacKkKlansman, Spike Lee
Director: Pawel Pawlikowski, Cold War
Actor: Marcello Fonte, Dogman
Actress: Samal Yeslyamova, Ayka
Jury Prize: Nadine Labaki, Capernaum
Screenplay — TIE: Alice Rohrwacher, Happy as Lazzaro AND Jafar Panahi, Nader Saeivar, 3 Faces
Special Palme d’Or: Jean-Luc Godard
Camera d’Or: Girl, Lukas Dhont
Short Films Palme d’Or: All These Creatures, Charles Williams
Short Films Special Mention: On the Border, Shujun Wei
Golden Eye Documentary Prize: TBA
Ecumenical Jury Prize: Capernaum, Nadine Labaki
Ecumenical Jury Special Mention: BlacKkKlansman, Spike Lee
Queer Palm: Girl, Lukas Dhont
UN CERTAIN REGARD
Un Certain Regard Award: Ali Abbasi, Border
Best Director: Sergei Loznitsa, Donbass
Best Performance: Victor Polster, Girl
Best Screenplay: Meryem Benm’Barek, Sofia
Special Jury Prize: João Salaviza & Renée Nader Messora, The Dead and the Others