Home » Cannes Film Festival Winners and Festival Recap

Cannes Film Festival Winners and Festival Recap

Cannes Film Festival has been ongoing over the past two weeks and it is considered once of the most iconic and prestigious festivals across Europe. One year after winning his second Palme d’Or for “Triangle of Sadness,” Ruben Östlund passed on the same prestigious honor to Justine Triet’s “Anatomy of a Fall,” a captivating legal thriller that delves into the guilt or innocence of a renowned novelist (Sandra Hüller) accused of murdering her husband. However, the film goes beyond the courtroom proceedings, serving as a profound exploration of their marriage, unearthing intimate details from their personal lives for the press, public, and audience to scrutinize, akin to a microscopic examination.

Justine Triet’s achievement as the third woman to receive the Palme d’Or, following Jane Campion for “The Piano” and Julia Ducournau, director of “Titane,” who served on this year’s jury alongside Östlund, marked a significant milestone. Presenting the award, Jane Fonda acknowledged the remarkable progress Cannes has made in terms of female representation, with seven female directors competing in the festival this year. Triet, during her acceptance speech, specifically acknowledged the protests against French pension reform, which were prohibited from the festival.

Julia Ducournau presented the Grand Prix to “The Zone of Interest” by Jonathan Glazer, a haunting adaptation of Martin Amis’s World War II novel. The film delves into the private life of a German commandant (Christian Friedel), responsible for the execution of countless Jews at Auschwitz. While the atrocities remain largely off-screen, the narrative primarily focuses on the officer and his wife (Sandra Hüller), urging audiences to confront the moral dilemmas faced by the perpetrators.

The Best Actor award was granted to Kōji Yakusho for his portrayal of a working-class Tokyo man in Wim Wenders’ “Perfect Days.” The character spends his mornings cleaning public toilets throughout the city while cherishing his free time for reading, tending to trees, and observing the people around him. The Best Actress prize surprised the audience by honoring Turkish actor Merve Dizdar for her role as a rural school teacher who challenges the self-centered male protagonist in Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s introspective and philosophical “About Dry Grasses.”

Sakamoto Yūji received the Screenplay Prize for “Monster,” while Finnish director Aki Kaurismaki took home the Jury Prize for “Fallen Leaves,” an ostensibly timeless love story between two strangers who struggle to maintain their jobs, forced to confront the present through radio dispatches from the war in Ukraine.

Ruben Östlund co-presented the awards with his fellow jurors, including Paul Dano and Brie Larson, Moroccan director Maryam Touzani, French actor Denis Ménochet, British-Zambian writer-director Rungano Nyoni, Afghan author Atiq Rahimi, Argentinian writer-director Damián Szifrón, and French director Julia Ducournau.

Cannes - Killers of the Flower Moon

Among the remarkable films making their world premiere outside the Palme d’Or competition, one of the most anticipated is the latest chapter of the Indiana Jones saga, titled “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny.” This time, at the age of 80, Harrison Ford embarks on his final adventure as the renowned archaeologist Indiana Jones. 

Another notable premiere is Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon,” a sprawling Western crime drama set in the 1920s, which revolves around a series of murders on a Native American reservation. Clocking in at three and a half hours, the film boasts an impressive ensemble cast. Scorsese reunites with Leonardo DiCaprio for the sixth time and brings together Robert De Niro for the tenth collaboration. Joining them is recent Oscar winner Brendan Fraser.

Cannes - Asteroid City

Plenty of Hollywood stars appear in competition films. Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore star in Todd Haynes’ romantic drama “May December,” Scarlett Johansson appears in Wes Anderson’s science fiction film, “Asteroid City.” Also in competition is German actress Sandra Hüller (“Toni Erdmann”), who stars in Jonathan Glazer’s Holocaust drama, “The Zone of Interest.” Let’s not forget the Japanese hit “Monster” directed by Hirokazu Kore-eda where is the story takes place from three perspectives; A mother, a teacher, and a son.

Full list of winners below:

Palme d’Or: “Anatomy of a Fall,” Justine Triet

Grand Prix: “The Zone of Interest,” Jonathan Glazer

Director: Tran Anh Hung, “The Pot au Feu”

Actor: Kōji Yakusho, “Perfect Days”

Actress: Merve Dizdar, “About Dry Grasses”

Jury Prize: “Fallen Leaves,” Aki Kaurismaki

Screenplay: Sakamoto Yûji, “Monster”

Camera d’Or: “Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell,” Thien An Pham

Short Films Palme d’Or: “27,” Flóra Anna Buda.

Short Films Special Mention: “Fár,” Gunnur Martinsdóttir Schlüter

Queer Palm: “Monster”

Un Certain Regard Award: “How to Have Sex,” Molly Manning Walker

Jury Prize: “Hounds,” Kamal Lazraq

Best Director Prize: “The Mother of All Lies,” Asmae El Moudir

Freedom Prize: “Goodbye Julia,” Mohamed Kordofani

Ensemble Prize: “The Buriti Flower,” João Salaviza, Renée Nader Messora, cast and crew

New Voice Prize: “Omen,” Baloji

Europa Cinemas Label: “Creatura,” Elena Martín

Society of Dramatic Authors and Composers Prize: “A Prince,” Pierre Creton

Grand Prize: “Tiger Stripes,” Amanda Nell Eu

French Touch Prize: “It’s raining in the house,” Paloma Sermon-Daï

GAN Foundation Award for Distribution: Pyramide Films, “Inshallah a boy”

Louis Roederer Foundation Rising Star Award: Jovan Ginić, “Lost Country”

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