Honor roll: Festival de Cannes Jury Awards for Feature Films

Each of these films has been nominated for a Festival de Cannes Jury Awards for Feature Films. They are ranked by honors received.

Film:Ballad of Narayama

Ballad of Narayama: (Narayama bushiko)

Shohei Imamura

A century ago in a remote mountain village, it was the custom that when people reached 70 years of age, they were taken to Mount Narayama to die. The Ballad of Narayama is the story of one elderly woman’s preparation for her final journey. From the powerful use of imagery to the final thrilling climax, Shohei Imamura (Black Rain) delivers a triumphant and beautiful film as universal as the seasonal changes which bookend the story itself.

Film:Yol

Yol

Serif Gören, Yilmaz Güney

Film:Czlowiek Z Zelaza

Czlowiek Z Zelaza: (Man of Iron)

Andrzej Wajda

Polish filmmaker Andrzej Wajda’s sequel to his immensely well-received Man of Marble covers some of the same ground: the relationship of labor leaders to their communist political masters and the difficulties the media encounters in covering that story. But it adds an exceptionally timely element: footage from the real-life Solidarity movement strikes led by Lech Walesa that were taking place during the film’s production are woven into the dramatic story. There are a few glimpses of Walesa, and he even pops up as a guest at the wedding of the fictional story’s hero. That man, Tomczyk, is the son of Birkut, the labor leader profiled in Man of Marble, and he’s played by the actor Jerzy Radziwilowicz, who played Birkut in the first film.

In Man of Marble, a student filmmaker in late 1970s Poland tried to uncover the story of Birkut, a working-class hero of the ‘50s who was later politically discredited and killed in a 1970 strike demonstration. Here, Winkiel (Marian Opania),…[more]

Film:Cinema Paradiso

Cinema Paradiso

Giuseppe Tornatore

Giuseppe Tornatore’s beautiful 1988 film about a little boy’s love affair with the movies deservedly won an Oscar for Best Foreign Film and a Special Jury Prize at Cannes. Philippe Noiret plays a grizzled old projectionist who takes pride in his presentation of screen dreams for a town still recovering from World War II. When a child (Jacques Perrin) demonstrates fascination not only for movies but also for the process of showing them to an audience, a lifelong friendship is struck. This isn’t just one of those films for people who are already in love with the…

Film:Too Beautiful for You

Too Beautiful for You: (Trop belle pour toi)

Bertrand Blier

In the films of Bertrand Blier, love is a virus that sends its victims on a feverish fling of impulsive passion before leaving them abandoned and alone. The difference in Too Beautiful for You is an empathy and warmth rarely seen in Blier’s often cynical work. Gérard Depardieu is the successful car dealer ambushed by Cupid when plain-looking secretary Josiane Balasko clumps into the office. It seems to defy all reason, how this frumpy, dumpy woman with eyes that caress lures Depardieu from elegant wife Carole Bouquet, a woman so poised and perfect she’s…

Film:A World Apart

A World Apart

Chris Menges

South Africa, 1963. Communist Gus Roth (Jeroen Krabbe) is forced to flee Johannesburg to escape arrest, leaving his activist wife Diana (Hershey) to continue their crusade against apartheid. But when Diana is wrenched from her three daughters and jailed under the notorious 90-day Detention Act, she and her family face the ultimate sacrifice in the fight for freedom.

Film:Jesus of Montreal

Jesus of Montreal

Denys Arcand

What happens to the people putting on a Passion Play? Someday Mel Gibson may tell us, but Denys Arcand’s Jesus of Montreal proposes an engaging possibility. In hip present-day Montreal, a group of actors stages the Passion in an outdoor, somewhat avant-garde style, led by the quietly charismatic and increasingly uncanny young man (Lothaire Bluteau, Black Robe) playing Christ. His identification with the role, and the way it bleeds into real life, gives director Denys Arcand plenty of opportunities for social comment—some of it spot-on, some of it a…

Film:A Short Film About Killing

A Short Film About Killing: (Krótki film o zabijaniu)

Krzysztof Kieslowski

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