Following last Thursday’s announcement from Cannes of the full official lineup for its 66th edition, La Semaine de la Critique, known to most as Critics’ Week, reveals its lineup for its 52nd edition, running from May 16 through 24. Of the total of ten features, six are debuts and four are second films.
Ritesh Batra’s The Lunchbox. From CineMosaic: “A mistaken delivery in Mumbai’s famously efficient lunchbox delivery system connects a young housewife to an old man in the dusk of his life as they build a fantasy world together through notes in the lunchbox. Gradually, this fantasy threatens to overwhelm their reality.”
Yury Bykov’s The Major. From Rock Films: “What if one day you make a mistake that destroys your life? Would you be ready to take the consequences, even if they ruin the happiness of your family? Would you be ready to kill somebody just to hide this mistake?”
Fabio Grassadonia and Antonio Piazza’s Salvo. From Ioncinema: “Salvo is a mafia killer in Palermo. Rita is twenty and blind from birth. Salvo sneaks into Rita’s house, to kill her brother. There is a fight, a ferocious, hand to hand struggle. Salvo finally kills him, then he goes up to Rita. Those blind eyes, trembling with rage and distress, staring at him yet unseeing, seem to disturb Salvo and he closes them with his hands covered in blood. When he removes the hands, Rita’s eyes see for the first time. Heir to Bruno Dumont? We’ll see.”
David Perrault’s Nos héros sont morts ce soir. With Denis Ménochet and Jean-Pierre Martins. According to Fabien Lemercier at Cineuropa, the film focuses on two wrestlers in France in the early 1960’s. Simon is “The Specter” in a white mask, while Victor’s “The Butcher of Belleville,” despised by the crowds. Just once, they decide, they’ll exchange masks.
Agustin Toscano and Ezequiel Radusky’s Los Dueños. Again, Jordan Mintzer: A “vaudeville-esque social comedy where workers on a farm party hard while their bosses are absent.”
Paul Wright’s For Those in Peril. From Protagonist Pictures: “Aaron, a young misfit living in a remote Scottish fishing community, is the lone survivor of a strange fishing accident that claimed the lives of five men, including his older brother. Spurred on by the sea-going folklore and local superstition, the village blames Aaron for this tragedy, making him an outcast amongst his own people. Steadfastly refusing to believe that his brother has died, he sets out to recover him and the rest of the men.”
Yann Gonzalez’s Les Rencontres d’après minuit. Alain-Fabien Delon, son of Alain, plays a teenager invited, along with a bitch and a stallion (Eric Cantona) to an orgy being thrown by a couple looking to spice up their lives. If you haven’t guessed, this debut feature will be an erotic comedy.
David Lowery’s Ain’t Them Bodies Saints. Big congrats to David Lowery, who’s having a very big year (he edited Shane Carruth’s Upstream Color and co-wrote Yen Tan’s Pit Stop; and he’s lined up to direct Robert Redford in an adaptation of a 2003 New Yorker article, “The Old Man and the Gun,” write a new Pete’s Dragon for Disney, and write and direct an adaptation of Brian Michael Bendis and Marc Andreyko’s graphic novel, Torso). As you’ll see in the Sundance roundup, Saints has been very well received.
Katell Quillévéré’s Suzanne. Opening Night. From Fabien Lemercier at Cineuropa: “Written by the director with Mariette Désert, the screenplay tells the story of a family and a love affair, through the journey of a young woman called Suzanne. The latter has a happy childhood, despite the absence of her mother who died when she and her sister Maria were very young. Her father Nicolas, who is loving but clumsy, does his best to keep the family together, by sacrificing himself for them instead of rebuilding his own life. As a teenager, Suzanne becomes pregnant, meets a boy who is a bit of a rogue, falls madly in love with him, and then runs off with him, leaving her baby behind. There will be years of wandering, prison, waiting, then an accident… It will be a difficult journey, peppered with traps, before this family can finally rebuild itself again, and the father, daughter, and grandson are reunited…” With Sara Forestier, Adèle Haenel, and François Damiens.
SHORT + MEDIUM-LENGTH FILMS
Daria Belova’s Komm und Spiel (Come and Play).
Han Eun-young’s Breathe Me.
Hu Wei’s La lampe au beurre de Yak.
David Lassiter’s The Opportunist.
Emmanuel Laborie’s Océan.
Magali Magistry’s Vikingar.
Ali Muritiba’s Pátio.
Nicolas Pariser’s Agit Pop.
Rodd Rathjen’s Tau Seru.
Ninja Thyberg’s Pleasure.
And here, in French, with subtitles, more than a few words on the selection from artistic director Charles Tesson: