Some of the world’s premier press agencies boycotted covering the announcement of the official Cannes Film Fest line up this year after a row over red carpet access, but that didn’t stop quick dissemination of who was in and who was out in one of the more speculated competitions of the year. Running from May 12-23, Cannes is recognized as the world’s premier international film festival and many filmmakers crave winning the fest’s top prize, the Palm d’Or, ahead of putting an Academy Award statue on their mantle.
Word had been leaked for some time that Hollywood wouldn’t dominate this year’s edition — it rarely does — but there was hope Terrence Malick’s long awaited “The Tree of Life” with Brad Pitt and Doug Liman’s “Fair Game” with Naomi Watts and Sean Penn would make the cut. Cinefiles will have to be happy that only one of those titles will screen on the Croisette this year. Moreover, IndieWire reports that up to 12 more films will be added to the slate, but at first glace this is a very uninteresting year.
The 2010 competition slate includes [Film and Director unless noted]:
Japanese director Takeshi Kitano makes a surprise return to the festival for the first time since 1999.
Mike Leigh reunites with Imelda Staunton and Jim Broadbent for this new drama.
Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu’s first entirely Spanish-language feature since “Amores Perros” stars Oscar-winner Javier Bardem.
“The Certified Copy”
Abbas Kiarostami’s latest stars Juliette Binoche in a romantic drama where a middle aged English writer meets a young French woman on a book tour Italy.
“Des Hommes des Dieux” (“Of Gods and Men”)
Xavier Beauvois’ drama about Cistercian monks who fight for their beliefs when confronted by fundamentalists.
Doug Liman’s drama tells the true story of CIA agent Valerie Plame (Naomi Watts) who was outed by the Bush White House after her husband (Sean Penn) criticized the administration for the Iraq invasion.
“Hors-la-loi” (Outside the Law”)
French filmmaker Rachid Bouchareb’s drama about Algeria’s political pains to become an independent state after World War II.
Im Sangsoo’s thriller examines the negative consequences of a man’s affair with his family’s housemaid.
“Un Homme Qui Crie”
Not much is known, so far, about African Mahamat-Saleh Haroun’s latest film.
“Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives”
Thailand’s Apichatpong Weerasethakul makes his third trip to the festival.
Acclaimed Korean filmmaker Lee Chang Dong returns to Cannes after debuting “Secret Sunshine” at the festival in 2007.
Best known for starring in “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” Mathieu Amalric is also an acclaimed filmmaker and makes his debut at Cannes as a director.
“You, My Joy”
Little is known about this film from Russian filmmaker Sergei Loznitsa who makes is making his Cannes debut.
“La Nostra Vita”
An Italian comedy from director Daniele Luchetti.
“Utomlyonnye Solntsem 2” (“Burnt by the Sun 2”)
Nikita Mikhalkov returns with the sequel to his 1994 Palm d’Or and Best Foreign Language Film.
“La Princesse de Monptpensier”
The latest from Bertrand Tavernier, a French cinematic icon who has never won the festival’s top prize despite having three of his previous films at the fest.
Un certain regard:
Derek Cianfrance’s acclaimed Sundance Film Festival drama featuring stunning performances by Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams.
“O Estranho Caso de Angelica,” (Anjelica)
Manouel de Oliveira
“Les Amours Imaginaires” (Heartbeats)
Ivan Fund and Santiago Loza
“Simon Werner a Disparu”
From French national treasure Jean-Luc Godard, this new drama is the filmmaker’s first in HD Video and is seemingly set on a cruise ship cruising the Mediterranean Sea.
“Unter Dir Die Stadt” (The City Below)
“Rebecca H. (Return to the Dogs),”
directed by Agnes Kocsis
“Marti Dupa Craciun” (Tuesday, After Christmas)
“Ha Ha Ha”
“Life Above All”
“R U There”
“Rizhao Chongqing” (Chongqing Blues)
Gregg Araki’s latest sounds awfully similar to his 1997 misfire “Nowhere” — another Sci-Fi flick centered on the “sexual awakening” of a group of college students. Thomas Dekker, Kelly Lynch and Haley Bennett are along for the ride.
“L”Autre Monde” (“Blackhole)
Out of competition:
The opening night selection, Ridley Scott’s take on the English legend stars longtime collaborator Russell Crowe as the Sherwood Forest hero and Cate Blanchett as Maid Marian.
“You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger”
Woody Allen’s latest drama with an awards-worthy cast including Josh Brolin, Naomi Watts, Antonio Banderas, Anthony Hopkins, and Frieda Pinto.
“Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps”
Oliver Stone returns to his ’80s cultural tipping point that won Michael Douglas a Best Actor actor and made the phrase “Greed is good” a national catch phrase is going before the press, but not the jury. At least Cannes gets Shia LaBeouf on the red carpet
Look for continuing coverage of Cannes, from this side of the Atlantic, as the weeks progress on HitFix.