• Divine Intervention

    Divine Intervention

    Scoring smarter, deeper political points were Amos Gitaï's Kedma, a drama about the founding of Israel, and Elia Suleiman's Divine Intervention, the first Palestinian film selected for competition. A patchwork of vignettes about the wretched absurdity of Palestinian life, the film is likable if thin, and undermined by a hot Ramallah babe who kicks Israeli butt with some ninja hijinks. That Suleiman's film was an early festival favorite was, as it turns out, one of the few things about which many of the critics could readily agree.

    from Un Certain Disregard, LA Weekly, May 29, 2002

  • Kedma

    Kedma

    Scoring smarter, deeper political points were Amos Gitaï's Kedma, a drama about the founding of Israel, and Elia Suleiman's Divine Intervention, the first Palestinian film selected for competition. A patchwork of vignettes about the wretched absurdity of Palestinian life, the film is likable if thin, and undermined by a hot Ramallah babe who kicks Israeli butt with some ninja hijinks. That Suleiman's film was an early festival favorite was, as it turns out, one of the few things about which many of the critics could readily agree.

    from Un Certain Disregard, LA Weekly, May 29, 2002

  • Bowling for Columbine

    Bowling for Columbine

    FOR A FESTIVAL MARKED BY POLITICS -- FROM THE guards sweeping security wands over audience members to the screens filled with war and suffering -- The Pianist perhaps seemed a safe choice for the Palme d'Or. Yet in a festival laden with good movies but absent any major revelation, neither did it seem especially wrong. Indeed, most of the overtly political films disappointed on some level. The worst by far was Michael Moore's Bowling for Columbine, a morass of reductive…

  • About Schmidt

    About Schmidt

    Damned with faint praise were The Son, another morality tale from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (Rosetta); Unknown Pleasures, an epic of ennui from Jia Zhangke, the prodigiously talented Chinese director of the 2000 festival's discovery, Platform; and David Cronenberg's Spider, about a mentally ill man struggling against his own demons. In a normal week, any one of these three titles would be greeted with enthusiasm, but instead, in the hothouse atmosphere of Cannes, they were found wanting, mostly because they…

  • Russian Ark

    Russian Ark

    Damned with faint praise were The Son, another morality tale from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (Rosetta); Unknown Pleasures, an epic of ennui from Jia Zhangke, the prodigiously talented Chinese director of the 2000 festival's discovery, Platform; and David Cronenberg's Spider, about a mentally ill man struggling against his own demons. In a normal week, any one of these three titles would be greeted with enthusiasm, but instead, in the hothouse atmosphere of Cannes, they were found wanting, mostly because they…

  • The Pianist

    The Pianist

    Damned with faint praise were The Son, another morality tale from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (Rosetta); Unknown Pleasures, an epic of ennui from Jia Zhangke, the prodigiously talented Chinese director of the 2000 festival's discovery, Platform; and David Cronenberg's Spider, about a mentally ill man struggling against his own demons. In a normal week, any one of these three titles would be greeted with enthusiasm, but instead, in the hothouse atmosphere of Cannes, they were found wanting, mostly because they…

  • Spider

    Spider

    Damned with faint praise were The Son, another morality tale from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (Rosetta); Unknown Pleasures, an epic of ennui from Jia Zhangke, the prodigiously talented Chinese director of the 2000 festival's discovery, Platform; and David Cronenberg's Spider, about a mentally ill man struggling against his own demons. In a normal week, any one of these three titles would be greeted with enthusiasm, but instead, in the hothouse atmosphere of Cannes, they were found wanting, mostly because they…

  • Unknown Pleasures

    Unknown Pleasures

    Damned with faint praise were The Son, another morality tale from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (Rosetta); Unknown Pleasures, an epic of ennui from Jia Zhangke, the prodigiously talented Chinese director of the 2000 festival's discovery, Platform; and David Cronenberg's Spider, about a mentally ill man struggling against his own demons. In a normal week, any one of these three titles would be greeted with enthusiasm, but instead, in the hothouse atmosphere of Cannes, they were found wanting, mostly because they…

  • The Son

    The Son

    Damned with faint praise were The Son, another morality tale from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (Rosetta); Unknown Pleasures, an epic of ennui from Jia Zhangke, the prodigiously talented Chinese director of the 2000 festival's discovery, Platform; and David Cronenberg's Spider, about a mentally ill man struggling against his own demons. In a normal week, any one of these three titles would be greeted with enthusiasm, but instead, in the hothouse atmosphere of Cannes, they were found wanting, mostly because they…

  • Demonlover

    Demonlover

    GIVEN THE WOES ON PARADE AT FILM FESTIVALS, where tears flow as freely as stage blood, it's not surprising that critics tend to embrace comedies like baby blankets. Aki Kaurismäki's charming if slight The Man Without a Past became an immediate favorite (it ended up winning second prize), and while critics were split when it came to Paul Thomas Anderson's lazy riff on an Adam Sandler comedy, Punch-Drunk Love, the film was quickly crowned a conceptual coup. (Anderson shared the…

  • Painted Fire

    Painted Fire

    GIVEN THE WOES ON PARADE AT FILM FESTIVALS, where tears flow as freely as stage blood, it's not surprising that critics tend to embrace comedies like baby blankets. Aki Kaurismäki's charming if slight The Man Without a Past became an immediate favorite (it ended up winning second prize), and while critics were split when it came to Paul Thomas Anderson's lazy riff on an Adam Sandler comedy, Punch-Drunk Love, the film was quickly crowned a conceptual coup. (Anderson shared the…

  • Punch-Drunk Love

    Punch-Drunk Love

    GIVEN THE WOES ON PARADE AT FILM FESTIVALS, where tears flow as freely as stage blood, it's not surprising that critics tend to embrace comedies like baby blankets. Aki Kaurismäki's charming if slight The Man Without a Past became an immediate favorite (it ended up winning second prize), and while critics were split when it came to Paul Thomas Anderson's lazy riff on an Adam Sandler comedy, Punch-Drunk Love, the film was quickly crowned a conceptual coup. (Anderson shared the…