So the Cannes Film Festival comes to another successful conclusion. The winner of the coveted The Palme d’Or was awarded to Lung Boonmee Raluek Chat (Uncle Boonmee who can Recall his Past Lives) “This Palme is very important for the history of Thailand and the Thai people.” He also credited, “the spirits and ghosts of Thailand,” as helping him to get where he is today. Read the synopsis of his film and it will make more sense.
Suffering from acute kidney failure, Uncle Boonmee has chosen to spend his final days surrounded by his loved ones in the countryside. Surprisingly, the ghost of his deceased wife appears to care for him, and his long lost son returns home in a non-human form. Contemplating the reasons for his illness, Boonmee treks through the jungle with his family to a mysterious hilltop cave — the birthplace of his first life…
The Grand Prix was awarded to Des Hommes et des dieux (Of Gods and Men) directed by Xavier Beauvois. The director described his experience of shooting the film as a “moment of grace” and took the opportunity to pay tribute to the memory of the eight Christian monks from the Monastery of Tibhirine whose last days alive he depicts in his film.
A monastery high in the mountains of the Maghreb, some time in the 90s…
Eight French Christian monks live in harmony with their Muslim brothers.
But violence and terror are slowly taking hold of the region. Despite the ever-growing danger that surrounds them, the monks’ resolve to stay – whatever the cost – grows stronger day by day…
The Jury Prize went to A Screaming Man by Mahamat-Saleh Haroun. “I come from a country where there isn’t much of anything. In a kind of a desert, I learnt that you have to make films like you cook your favourite dishes for the people you love.”
Present-day Chad. Adam, sixty something, a former swimming champion, is pool attendant at a smart N’Djamena hotel. When the hotel gets taken over by new Chinese owners, he is forced to give up his job to his son Abdel. Terribly resentful, he feels socially humiliated.
The country is in the throes of a civil war. Rebel forces are attacking the government. The authorities demand that the population contribute to the “war effort”, giving money or volunteers old enough to fight off the assailants. The District Chief constantly harasses Adam for his contribution. But Adam is penniless; he only has his son….
Mathieu Amalric won the prize for Best Director for his film Tournée (On Tour). Durring his speech he called up his actresses to be with him and said, “This moves me very much, I have the impression of coming home. I need all of you to be able to experience this moment. The direction was all them. Huge thanks. ”
There was a tie this year for Best Actor. The awards went to Javier Bardem for Biutiful directed by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu and to Elio Germano for La Nostra Vita (Our Life) directed by Daniele Luchetti.
The Best Actress Prize has been awarded to Juliette Binoche for her role in Copie conforme (Certified Copy) by Abbas Kiarostami. “How wonderful, how wonderful it was to work with you, Abbas! Your camera is the one that revealed me to my womanliness. There are almost no words, because in front of a camera that loves you, that is where the miracle is…”
The Award for Best Screenplay went to Lee Chang-dong for Poetry which he also directed. “I´d like to thank Mr Tim Burton and the other members of his Jury. I´d like to share this honour with all of the film´s actors and actresses.”