The big prize at this year’s awards went to Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s film ‘Winter Sleep’. So what is it and why did it win? We look at the winners from this year’s Cannes International Film Festival.
Winter Sleep is a Turkish film, shot on Turkey’s Anatolian steppe which was hailed for it’s use of cinematography and the inclusion of dramatic features and the bleak nature of the setting. But what really charmed the judges and audiences is the richly drawn characters that emerge in Ceylan’s narrative-driven tale of a young hotelier couple (an isolated actor and his young newlywed) with a rocky marriage who turn their hotel into a shelter when winter comes. Along for the ride is the husband’s recently divorced sister, adding the perfect tinge of mystery and pessimism to the shadowy nowhere’s nowhere of a landscape. Although at more than 3 hours in total running time the film has been criticised for it’s length, critics have applauded the rich character development and have agreed that it isn’t a chore to watch. We can’t wait for it’s UK release!
Happily, this went to Timothy Spall, who stars as British painter J.M.W. Turner in Mike Leigh’s biopic “Mr. Turner.” He spoke emotionally about a long, humble career that has often gone without such notice.
“I’ve spent a lot of time being a bridesmaid,” said the veteran character actor. “This is the first time I’ve ever been a bride.”
Bennett Miller (“Capote,” “Moneyball”) won best director for his wresting drama “Foxcatcher,” the American film that made the biggest impact at Cannes. Miller dedicated his award to his stars Channing Tatum, Steve Carell and Mark Ruffalo, as well as producer Megan Ellison. Stay tuned for Oscar season, where Carell seems a dead cert for Best Actor.
The Jury Prize
The jury prize was shared by polar opposites: Xavier Dolan’s “Mommy” and Jean-Luc Godard’s “Goodbye to Language” both won. Anecdotally, the two were the oldest (Godard is 83) and youngest (Dolan is 25) directors at the festival.
The Grand Prix
Alice Rohrwatcher’s “The Wonders,” an Italian drama about a family of beekeepers, was the surprise winner of the Grand Prix. Rohrwatcher was one of two female directors among the 18 films in competition for the Palme d’Or.
The Camera d’Or
The Camera d’Or, an award for first-time filmmakers, went to “Party Girl,” a portrait of a 60-year-old nightclub hostess by a trio of directors: Marie Amachoukeli, Claire Burger and Samuel Theis.
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