The Cannes Film Festival began to feel like a Festival of Endurance two or three days ago, and has since devolved into a Festival of the Walking Numb. Nine straight days of delightful absorption in the cinematic cornucopia of now, and honestly? As I sit here in my untidy bedroom I’m honestly wondering — debating — whether I’ll ever return. Too costly, too exhausting and indeed draining after the seven-day mark, too many superficial people in tuxedos and evening gowns. My maiden visit was 31 years ago, and I’ve been an annual repeater for roughly 15 or 16 years now. I’ll never stop visiting Europe, but film festival-wise and henceforth I’ll probably be more than happy to confine myself to Telluride, Santa Barbara, NYFF and all the great second-tier gatherings (Savannah, Key West, Mill Valley, Montclair).
Wednesday, 5.24, is a relatively flat day. Seemingly. Humble opinion and all that. The only films that have poked my interest are (a) Tran Anh Hung‘s The Pot-au-Feu (5 pm, Debussy), a 19th Century gourmet romance costarring Juliette Binoche and Benoît Magimel, and (b) Kanu Behl‘s Agra (8:45 pm, Director’s Fortnight, Theatre Croisette), which appears to be a sexual exploration thing.
I’ll certainly pay no attention to Leslie Iwerks‘ 100 Years of Warner Bros. (7pm, Agnes Varda) — scratch it.
Tomorrow (Thursday, 5.25) is a slight puzzler. I’ll thinking hard about catching Wim Wenders‘ Perfect Days (4 pm, Grand Theatre Lumiere), an anthology film about a Japanese toilet cleaner (Kōji Yakusho). One, I’ve never been a Tokyo lover. Two, I’m presuming that Wenders will most likely confront the viewer with a certain number of toilet bowl shots, which naturally concerns me.
On top of which catching the Wenders will force me to miss “Rendez-vous with Quentin Tarantino” (4:15 pm, Theatre Croisette). I know this will be a fun event, and will include a Tarantino-selected secret screening. Tarantino or toilet cleaner? Answer, please.
Next comes Catherine Breillat‘s Last Summer (6 pm Salle Debussy). A remake of 2019’s Queen of Hearts, Breillat’s erotic drama “explores the taboos of a stepmother–stepson relationship.”