Another year has gone by, as the world’s most prestigious festival comes to a close. The 69th Cannes Film Festival has been a whirlwind of some sort. This year featured a bad Woody Allen joke during the opening ceremony, a barefoot Julia Roberts in the red carpet, and probably the most low-key Un Certain Regard competition in a long time.
As for the Main Competition, the consensus is that it’s a bit frontloaded with the latter half of the festival ranging from underwhelming (Dardennes), to bad (Dolan), to really bad (Penn), and sadly, to the no1curr (Mendoza). That said, this is one of the hardest to predict since there isn’t any specific basis as to what the jury will go for (and the jury changes every year!), but here’s a stab at possible winner predictions.
PRIX DU SCÉNARIO
PREDICTION: Cristian Mungiu, “Bacalaureat (Graduation)”
Mungiu has already won this award four years ago with Beyond the Hills, but I can see him being the first person to win this twice. A previous Palme d’Or winner for 4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days, this slow burner story about a father and his daughter is the type of thought provoking film that usually wins this category. He can find himself against the other Romanian, Cristi Piui, for equally talky film Sieranevada
ALTERNATE: Asghar Farhadi, “Forushande (The Salesman)”
Prior to the beginning of the festival, this one is touted as one of the major frontrunners especially since it was a late minute addition. While it can still happen in this jury, the relatively silent reactions around it makes me think that it can settle for a Screenplay award instead.
PRIX D’INTERPRÉTATION MASCULINE
PREDICTION: Dave Johns, “I, Daniel Blake”
Mostly known as an English stand up comic, “I Daniel Blake” is Dave Johns’ first foray into movie acting. And if it’s any indication, he should be doing more of it. His commanding turn as the title role in Ken Loach’ entry this year reportedly broke a lot of hearts and had everyone praising him. Seems fitting in this category.
ALTERNATE: Adam Driver, “Paterson”
The Jim Jarmusch film in competition this year is said to be in his upper tier of works, and if the Jury loves it so much, an award to its lead actor can be one way of rewarding it. In the event it happens, it’s quite delicious since Driver has just won the Volpi Cup two years ago for Hungry Hearts, and for him to have 2/3 of the major trifecta for a relatively short career yet is astounding, to say the least.
PRIX D’INTERPRÉTATION FÉMININE
PREDICTION: Sonia Braga, “Aquarius”
Locks rarely do happen at Cannes of all people (heck even unanimously raved Blue is the Warmest Color in 2013 wasn’t a sure thing as we entered the awarding ceremony), but if there’s one performance that was continuously raved from its premiere up to now was that of Sonia Braga’s in Aquarius. It also helps that the film has received great word too, so it can be hitting two birds with one stone in this one.
ALTERNATE: Kristen Stewart, “Personal Shopper”
To be frank, this is probably the most competitive lead actress year in Cannes for quite some time. There’s Isabelle Huppert gunning a third win for “Elle” and Sandra Huller for “Toni Erdmann” but I think both are also gunning for higher prizes. There’s also Ruth Negga who was consistently praised for “Loving“, the two women who played the title roles of”Julieta” — Emma Suarez and Adriana Ugarte, Adèle Haenel of “The Unknown Girl“, Sasha Lane of “American Honey“, Juliette Binoche of “Ma Loute“, Jaclyn Jose of “Ma’Rosa“, Elle Fanning of “The Neon Demon“, but maybe Kristen Stewart’s lead role in Oliver Assayas’ “Personal Shopper” is one that can appeal to this particular jury.
PRIX DE LA MISE EN SCÉNE
PREDICTION: Andrea Arnold, “American Honey”
I’m sure politics isn’t the be all-end all of everything, but in the history of Cannes, only one woman has won the Best Director trophy (that would be Soviet director Yuliya Solntseva 55 years ago way back in 1961). The buzz for American Honey has managed to stay throughout the rest of the competition, and while I don’t think it was unanimously raved, this type of divisive response is perfect for a Best Director trophy.
ALTERNATE: Paul Verhoeven, “Elle”
Sure he is no highly heralded auteur, but Paul Verhoeven’s comeback is enough narrative for him to win this. This is the man who gave us Starship Troopers and Basic Instinct, so winning a Cannes Best Director for his first film in ten years is something I can see the jury acknowledging.
PRIX DU JURY
PREDICTION: Park Chan-Wook, “Agassi (The Handmaiden)”
Winner of the same award back in 2009 for “Thirst“, Park Chan-Wook’s comeback film in competition can also be his third-award winning one following 2004 Grand Prix winner “Oldboy” and the aforementioned Thirst. “Agassi” surely isn’t the unanimous raved entry for this year, but between its feminist tones and deliciously looking visuals, this can be enough of a formula to win a Jury Prize.
ALTERNATE: Bruno Dumont “Ma Loute (Slack Bay)”
It’s a bit weird to see no French entry be rewarded with a win especially since this is the Cannes after all, but if there’s one, this Bruno Dumont comedy is my best guess to have a chance.
PREDICTION: Paul Verhoeven, “Elle”
Saving the latter half of the competition, Verhoeven’s comeback vehicle “Elle” was met with raves from critics and was considered as the perfect closer to the festival. Its humorous and atypical take on a serious subject matter, as well as the combination of star power and potential wide appeal is definitely right up Miller’s alley. One reason why I’m not predicting it for the Palme d’Or though is that I think it’s a tad controversial and boundary pushing for the top prize.
ALTERNATE: Andrea Arnold, “American Honey”
American press kept on harping that this is the next Palme d’Or, but I have my reservations with that. I think it’s too divisive and not even the type of divisive that will have enough champions in the group. It’s more fitting for a Jury Prize or a Directorial one for Andrea Arnold. But who knows? Maybe they know something I don’t.
PREDICTION: Maren Ade, “Toni Erdmann”
It’s really the breakout of this festival. This strange comedy from female filmmaker Maren Ade really had all the critics raving about it. As for starters, it’s one of the consistent performer across all different critics poll series. Then, George Miller hinted about wanting to reward/prefer a comedy. Add the narrative of only one female director winning the Palme d’Or (that would be Jane Campion’s “The Piano” back in 1993 but it won in a tie). Unless the jury really wants to go on a different direction, I think we’re looking at our Palme winner already.
ALTERNATE: Ken Loach, “I, Daniel Blake”
Well this is the other direction I’m referring to. If they’re not in the mood for some comedy, then this heartwarming drama which was reported as having the jury really ecstatic about it can be our Palme winner. Ken Loach won this exactly a decade ago unanimously with “The Wind That Shakes the Barley” (in a competition that included Bruno Dumont, Nicole Garcia, Andrea Arnold, and Pedro Almodovar too) so maybe history’s for rewriting this one.
As for that highly regarded film that ended up with no win, I’m leaning towards Jim Jarmusch’s “Paterson” and Cristi Piui’s “Sieranevada” as the likely victims for this year. I’m excited to see the Maren Ade, the Jim Jarmusch, the Paul Verhoeven, Asghar Farhadi, and I guess the Brillante Mendoza among the competition, but titles in other sidebars such as Pablo Larrain’s “Neruda” and “The Red Turtle.” Oh and for the sheer lulz of it, I hope we get to see Sean Penn’s “The Last Face” too!
Talk to me about it on Twitter: @nikowl
After last night’s SAG nominations, we’re hopeful that at least Golden Globes will also bring the crazy. Last night, Trumbo went big, The Martian was snubbed, and the Spotlight guys probably split votes. Let’s see if the Globes follow suit or if they do their own thing. Here are my predictions in all 25 categories.
“Bridge of Spies”
“Beasts of No Nation”
NEXT IN LINE: “Brooklyn“, “Room“, “The Hateful Eight”
FILM ACTOR, DRAMA
Johnny Depp, “Black Mass”
Leonardo DiCaprio, “The Revenant”
Michael Fassbender, “Steve Jobs”
Eddie Redmayne, “The Danish Girl”
Will Smith, “Concussion”
NEXT IN LINE: Michael Caine, “Youth“, Tom Hanks, “Bridge of Spies“, Bryan Cranston, “Trumbo”
FILM ACTRESS, DRAMA
Cate Blanchett “Carol”
Brie Larson “Room”
Rooney Mara, “Carol”
Saoirse Ronan “Brooklyn”
Alicia Vikander “The Danish Girl”
NEXT IN LINE: Carey Mulligan, “Suffragette”, Charlize Theron, “Mad Max: Fury Road“, Charlotte Rampling, “45 Years”
“The Big Short”
“The Diary of a Teenage Girl”
NEXT IN LINE: “Sisters”, “The Intern”, “Spy”
FILM ACTOR, MUSICAL/COMEDY
Christian Bale, “The Big Short”
Steve Carell, “The Big Short”
Bradley Cooper, “Burnt”
Matt Damon, “The Martian”
Joaquin Phoenix, “Irrational Man”
NEXT IN LINE: Robert de Niro, “The Intern“, Al Pacino,”Danny Collins“, Bill Hader, “Trainwreck”
FILM ACTRESS, MUSICAL/COMEDY
Jennifer Lawrence, “Joy”
Amy Schumer, “Trainwreck”
Maggie Smith, “The Lady in the Van”
Meryl Streep, “Ricki and the Flash”
Lily Tomlin, “Grandma”
NEXT IN LINE: Anne Hathaway, “The Intern“, Bel Powley, “The Diary of a Teenage Girl“, Melissa McCarthy, “Spy”
FILM SUPPORTING ACTOR
Benicio del Toro, “Sicario”
Idris Elba, “Beasts of No Nation”
Mark Ruffalo, “Spotlight”
Mark Rylance, “Bridge of Spies”
NEXT IN LINE: Tom Hardy, “The Revenant“, Walton Goggins, “The Hateful Eight“, Sylvester Stallone, “Creed”
FILM SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Jennifer Jason Leigh, “The Hateful Eight”
Rachel McAdams, “Spotlight”
Helen Mirren, “Trumbo”
Kristen Stewart, “Clouds of Sils Maria”
Kate Winslet, “Steve Jobs”
NEXT IN LINE: Jane Fonda, “Youth”, Julia Roberts, “Secret in their Eyes“, Alicia Vikander, “Ex Machina”
Todd Haynes, “Carol”
Alejandro G. Inarritu, “The Revenant”
Tom McCarthy, “Spotlight”
George Miller,”Mad Max: Fury Road”
Ridley Scott, “The Martian”
NEXT IN LINE: David O. Russell, “Joy“, Steven Spielberg, “Bridge of Spies“, Quentin Tarantino, “The Hateful Eight”
“The Big Short”
“Bridge of Spies”
NEXT IN LINE: “Carol“, “The Hateful Eight”, “The Martian”
“The Good Dinosaur”
NEXT IN LINE: “The Peanuts Movie”, “Shaun the Sheep Movie”
FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM:
“Labyrinth of Lies” (Germany)
“The Second Mother” (Brazil)
“Son of Saul” (Hungary)
NEXT IN LINE: “A War” (Denmark), “Dheepan” (France), “The Clan” (Argentina)
“The Danish Girl”
“The Hateful Eight”
NEXT IN LINE: , “Bridge of Spies”, “Mad Max: Fury Road”, “Inside Out”
“Earned It” (50 Shades of Gray)
“Love Me Like You Do” (50 Shades of Grey)
“See You Again” (Furious 7)
“Writing’s On the Wall” (Spectre)
NEXT IN LINE: “One Kind of Love” (Love & Mercy), “Flashlight” (Pitch Perfect 2), “Cold One” (Ricki and the Flash)
TV DRAMA SERIES
“Game of Thrones”
“House of Cards”
NEXT IN LINE: “Better Call Saul”, “Homeland”, “The Leftovers”
TV DRAMA ACTOR
Terence Howard, “Empire”
Rami Malek, “Mr. Robot”
Wagner Moura, “Narcos”
Liev Schreiber, “Ray Donovan”
Kevin Spacey, “House of Cards”
NEXT IN LINE: Bob Odenkirk, “Better Call Saul“; Justin Theroux, “The Leftovers“; Kyle Chandler, “Bloodline”
TV DRAMA ACTRESS
Claire Danes, “Homeland”
Viola Davis, “How to Get Away with Murder”
Taraji P. Henson, “Empire”
Krysten Ritter, “Jessica Jones”
Robin Wright, “House of Cards”
NEXT IN LINE: Jaimie Alexander, “Blindspot“; Priyanka Chopra, “Quantico“; Ruth Wilson, “The Affair”
TV COMEDY SERIES
“Master of None”
“Orange is the New Black”
“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
NEXT IN LINE: “The Last Man on Earth”, “Casual”, “Silicon Valley”
TV COMEDY ACTOR
Aziz Ansari, “Master of None”
Billy Eichner, “Difficult People”
Will Forte, “Last Man on Earth”
Rob Lowe, “The Grinder”
Jeffrey Tambor, “Transparent”
NEXT IN LINE: Anthony Anderson, “Black-ish“; Andy Samberg, “Brooklyn Nine Nine“; Thomas Middleditch, “Silicon Valley”
TV COMEDY ACTRESS
Rachel Bloom, “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”
Julia Louis Dreyfus, “Veep”
Ellie Kemper, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
Gina Rodriguez, “Jane the Virgin”
Constance Wu, “Fresh Off the Boat”
NEXT IN LINE: Jamie Lee Curtis, “Scream Queens“; Lily Tomlin, “Grace and Frankie“; Jane Fonda, “Grace and Frankie”
TV MOVIE/LIMITED SERIES
“Show Me A Hero”
NEXT IN LINE: “American Crime”, “American Horror Story: Hotel”, “True Detective”
TV MOVIE/LIMITED SERIES ACTOR
Idris Elba, “Luther”
Oscar Isaac, “Show Me A Hero”
Jason Isaacs, “Dig”
Mark Rylance, “Wolf Hall”
Patrick Wilson, “Fargo”
NEXT IN LINE: David Oyelowo, “Nightingale“; Colin Farrell, “True Detective 2“; Timothy Hutton, “American Crime”
TV MOVIE/MINISERIES ACTRESS
Kirsten Dunst, “Fargo”
Felicity Huffman, “American Crime”
Nicole Kidman, “Grace of Monaco”
Lady Gaga, “American Horror Story: Hotel”
Queen Latifah, “Bessie”
NEXT IN LINE: Rachel McAdams, “True Detective“; Kathy Bates, “American Horror Story: Hotel“; Saoirse Ronan, “Stockholm, Pennsylvania”
TV SUPPORTING ACTOR
Tituss Burgess, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
Ted Danson, “Fargo”
Peter Dinklage, “Game of Thrones”
Damian Lewis, “Wolf Hall”
Christian Slater, “Mr. Robot”
NEXT IN LINE: Jussie Smollett, “Empire“; Pedro Pascal, “Narcos“; Jonathan Banks, “Better Call Saul”
TV SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Uzo Aduba, “Orange is the New Black”
Lena Headey, “Game of Thrones”
Regina King, “American Crime”
Jean Smart, “Fargo”
NEXT IN LINE: Julie Walters, “Indian Summer“; Allison Janney, “Mom“; Niecy Nash, “Scream Queens”
The Golden Globe nominations will be announced tonight at 9PM in Manila time by Jeremy Piven, Kate Beckinsale, Peter Krause, and Paula Patton.
You can follow me on Twitter: @nikowl
Photo from redriff.com
And we have finally reached the end of the season. The end of the 67th Cannes Film Fest a.k.a the world’s biggest film festival is upon us in a few hours. Now that all films in the In Competition have screened, it’s time to predict on which films and performances will garner prizes from our jury headed by Jane Campion. As the whole season progressed, there have been lots of talks about the films in contention this year. From Still the Water‘s Naomi Kawase’s claim that she’s going Palme or nothing, to Xavier Dolan’s dedicating his possible win to the filmmakers of his generation, Cannes has never been louder – and more competitive – than ever. This year we have no solid frontrunner like that of Amour in 2012 or Blue is the Warmest Color like last year so predicting things is much trickier this time around. With that said, here’s how I foresee Campion and company’s decisions in all seven categories.
PREDICTION: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne, “Two Days One Night”
The Dardenne brothers have always ended up with something during their last five participation in the main competition of the Cannes Film Fest. So as expected, they’re bound to end up winning one for this latest film which is a hit from the critics and watchers alike. While the possibility of them receiving a third Palme d’or is very much possible, the reward can also happen to lead actress Marion Cotillard whose third time is probably the charm for these voters. That said, I think they’re ending up with the Screenplay award instead which will continue their impressive record of winning in competition.
ALTERNATE: Andrey Zvyagintsev, Oleg Negin, “Leviathan”
If not the pair of brothers, then maybe this pair of writing pals will end up winning n this category instead. There seems to be a level of disconnect in terms of the reception between critics with Leviathan, but if the jury is sold, this can be the most fitting place for them to reward it.
PREDICTION: Timothy Spall, “Mr. Turner”
Mike Leigh’s lead acting roles have a tendency to attract awards and recognition, and Mr. Turner seems to be no exception. Timothy Spall’s transformation as the British painter J.M.W. Turner is one that screams acting, and this seems to be the most fitting place to reward the film. Make no mistake though, as there are lots of other contenders in this category as well.
ALTERNATE: the male ensemble of Foxcatcher (Steve Carell, Channing Tatum, Mark Ruffalo)
I know what you’re thinking. Cannes winner Channing Tatum? Well yeah that’s indeed close to happening. If the jury can’t decide on which Foxcatcher actor to reward, then they might give a share to all three actors instead for their contribution in this well received Bennett Miller’s cold drama. Ensemble wins are pretty regular at festivals, so it’s not as if this is the first time that it will happen. That said, watch out for Gaspard Ulliel in Saint Laurent or Haluk Bilginer of Winter Sleep to be competitive for the win as well.
PREDICTION: Juliette Binoche, “Clouds of Sils Maria”
Sure, Binoche has won just four years ago with Certified Copy, but never underestimate this jury’s love for Juliette Binoche. A lot of them are vocal huge fans of the actress, and that alone might put her instantly to the top. Besides, Sils Maria is such an actressing role. It’s about an actress reclaiming a position that was hers before. I wouldn’t even be surprised if they give a joint prize to Juliette Binoche and Kristen Stewart who’s been receiving career best reviews here. For now, I’ll stick with solely Binoche, but I wouldn’t count out that possibility.
ALTERNATE: Anne Dorval, “Mommy”
Xavier Dolan is a great actor’s director, as he surely brings out the best of his actors in the screen (sadly, the same can’t be said for his performances in his films). From what I’ve read tho, Dorval’s too much of a showy, too much in your face, cold role that might turn some members of the jury off. There’s also the possibility of Mommy winning the Palme which will easily eliminate Dorval from the conversation. Also take note of Marion Cotillard’s great ink for the Dardennes’ Two Days, One Night. Girl has been waiting for her Actress prize for the third year now (after losing for Rust and Bone and The Immigrant) and this might be her time. There’s also Julianne Moore who’ll be the second actress (after Binoche) to win the trifecta of Actress wins in all three big festivals for Maps to the Stars. But I’m not really counting on that to happen.
PREDICTION: Xavier Dolan, “Mommy”
Dolan is a co-frontrunner for the Palme, there’s no doubt about that one. And if anything, his is the type of experimental approach that this jury could possibly appreciate. With that said, if a consensus has to be played out in the jury, I think they’ll give him the Directing award instead. For all the style approaches that Dolan used in Mommy including the type of screen he used in the final output, i think it’s pretty obvious that this is the place where they’ll reward the film instead.
ALTERNATE: Naomi Kawase, “Still the Water”
Kawase came to Cannes prepared with the Palme in her sight. But seems like a lot of films upstaged hers though. Never mind that since Jane Campion is a vocal Kawase fan, and unless she pulls an Isabelle Adjani and demands the rest of them to give the Palme to this, then this directorial effort might be her best shot for a win this year. After all, there have been so many talks with only one female director winner in Cannes history, so this will some sort of a passing the torch style if she wins this one. Plus with the divisiveness of Still the Water, this fits the bill of other underwhelming or critically panned films that still ended up winning Director the last few years (Brillante Mendoza for Kinatay in 2009, Carlos Reygadas for Post Tenebras Lux in 2012, and last year’s Aman Escalante for Heli). The other female director Alice Rohrwacher is also a contender here.
PREDICTION: Alice Rohrwacher, “Le Meraviglie”
Rohrwacher’s case is very interesting this year. While the rest of the critics are raving about this film, the French one seemed to be so adamant about it even ranking it as the lowest in their polls. But except for that, it has been performing greatly among all the other ones. I think in this case, the French are clearly the outliers, and this Italian director can score a Jury Prize from the panel of voters.
ALTERNATE: Naomi Kawase, “Still the Water”
If not, then maybe the other woman in the festival, Naomi Kawase, can end up winning this. Seems like Still the Water, for all its divisiveness, is the type of of film that gains really passionate fans and those fans might be the ones making up the decision this year. If they can’t come up with a consensus of this one winning the Palme, then the Jury Prize might be good enough as the palce to reward it.
PREDICTION: Abderrhamane Sissako, “Timbuktu”
Despite premiering at the earlier part of the festival, Sissako’s Timbuktu not only managed to raise the bar for competition this year, but they also were able to maintain this momentum all throughout the festival. With a riveting “OMG important” political topic tackled in the film, I’m quite confident that this will be getting home with an award. It’s one of the year’s most lauded films and this might give him another win after his Un Certain Regard victory 21 years ago.
ALTERNATE: Jean-Luc Godard, “Goodbye to Language 3D”
Going into the competition, Godard is another one who’s a common denominator of influence and inspiration among the members of this year’s Cannes jury. But despite strong polarizing reactions with this one, and with reports of the jury not giving a care about it, who knows if they’ll give this an award or if they will leave it to the dust?
PREDICTION: Nuri Blige Ceylan, “Winter Sleep”
And as for the biggest prize, I think that it is Ceylan’s time to win the Palme for this year. Not only did he manage to sustain the high expectations given to him after Once Upon a Time in Anatolia, he was able to translate that with near consensus critical appraisal for this one. Winter Sleep is the type of film that I think can avoid the polarizing reaction from the jury and one that can be on the middle ground when the other polarizing films bring down each other. Also, the technical achievement of this film is outstanding that it might certainly put it on top of the jury’s preference list for this year.
ALTERNATE: Xavier Dolan, “Mommy”
When Dolan vocally mentioned his frustration of Laurence Anyways not getting a Main Competition slot two years ago, it seemed as if his ego’s feeding him with that statement. And for his first foray into the big leagues, he certainly did not disappoint with the raves his film is getting. I admit, even I was surprised with this reception to Dolan’s film, since he’s usually polarizing and divisive that his film getting a favorable consensus is new to me. I can envision a scenario of him winning the Palme actually, and being the youngest director to pull that off. But is the jury ready for that? Let’s see.
As for the annual snubbed film of the year that will join the ranks of Mike Leigh’s Another Year, Aki Kaurismaki’s Le Havre, Leos Carax’ Holy Motors, and Paolo Sorrentino’s The Great Beauty, my bet is on Godard’s “Goodbye to Language 3D.” Seems like it will be too divisive for the jury to have a consensus on where to award it, regardless of its great reviews.
There you have it. Another year at Cannes has ended and this year seemed more competitive than the previous one. Sure we don’t have the totally groundbreaking ones, but we don’t have total clunkers this year (though the closest would have been Michel Hazanavicius’ The Search and Atom Egoyan’s Captives). I’m excited the most for Dolan, Ceylan, Assayas, Dardennes, and Cronenberg, so I hope we’d get to see them sooner. For the Un Certain Regard, Lisandro Alonso’s Jauja, Pascale Ferran’s Bird People, and Ryan Gosling’s Lost River (bad reviews be damned) are on the top of my list. Who do you think will end up winnign this year? Can Dolan be the youngest Palme director winner? is third time the charm for Marion Cotillard? Can Channing Tatum and Kristen Stewart add Cannes winner on their names? And can Naomi Kawase shift careers as the next Nostradamus now? I bet you’re excited to find out.
You can follow me on Twitter: @nikowl