Highlights of the 2013 Cannes Film Festival

The Cannes Film Festival is held every year in beautiful Cannes, France, introducing new films from directors and genres around the world. This year’s Cannes Film Festival may have been over, but it left audiences with plenty of great films to ponder. The highlights of the 2013 Cannes Film Festival include a variety of films from every genre and from all corners of the globe, ensuring something for everyone.

The film that won the festival’s top prize, Palme d’Or, was ‘Blue Is the Warmest Color’, a feature-length film about a lesbian couple living in France. The film is particularly notable because it was screened just after France made a controversial decision to allow same-sex marriage. “Blue Is the Warmest Color” was directed by Abdellatif Kechiche and the film is already making waves internationally for its sweet storyline and political timing. The film’s lead actresses, Adele Exarchopoulos and Lea Seydoux, also took home the top prize for acting at the Cannes festival.

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Bruce Dern won the Best Actor award for his role in “Nebraska”, directed by Alexander Payne. “Nebraska” follows the story of an elderly man with dementia who keeps trying to escape from his home because he believes he has won a prize in a big contest. His children must try to get him safely back to his home while coping with the reality of their father’s mental decline. “Nebraska” was a notable film at the festival for its down-to-earth storytelling and setting. The film explored what life is like on the American plains, as well as the nature of dementia and its effect on modern families. “Nebraska” was filmed entirely in black and white, giving it a unique atmosphere that complements the darker themes of the film.

“All Is Lost” is an action movie starring Robert Redford in a lone role as a floating man at sea. His boat begins to sink and the rest of the film follows his efforts to repair the boat and avoid drowning in several innovative ways. “All Is Lost” is arguably one of the most notable films produced by director JC Chandor, known for his films about marine life and the human condition.

Kore-Eda Hirokazu also caused a stir at the festival with his film “Like Father, Like Son”, a story about a young Japanese couple who discover that their beloved son was confused at birth. Ryota, the protagonist of the film, is a hard-working man who lives an idyllic life with his beloved wife and a perfect six-year-old son named Keita. He and his wife are taken aback when the hospital tells him there was a mix-up the day of Keita’s birth, and Keita is not their biological son. Ryota and his wife must choose whether to keep the son they’ve loved and raised as their own, or sacrifice six years of parenthood to find their biological son. The limits of love are tested, and Hirokazu thoroughly explores what it means to be a father.

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“The Past” is a French and Italian film directed by Asghar Farhadi. The film follows a young man named Ahmad who visits his estranged wife, Marie, in Paris after a lengthy stay in Tehran. Upon his return, he discovers that his wife is having serious problems in her relationship with her young daughter, Lucie. Though the couple is in the midst of divorce proceedings, Ahmad decides to try and help Marie and Lucie mend their mother-daughter relationship while he is there. The film provides a unique look into a blended family and explores the nature of divorce, parenthood, and moving on. Ahmad’s character is recognizable and the relatively short film moves at a steady pace before reaching an unexpected climax that is sure to surprise the audience.

The 2013 Cannes Film Festival was full of unique and controversial films that made viewers think about life, circumstances and their own beliefs. There were many new actors and actresses, as well as well-known directors, which ensured a great diversity of the festival. From well-known actors like Robert Redford to the impressive and candid performances of newcomers such as Adele Exarchopoulos in ‘Blue Is the Warmest Color’, the 2013 Cannes Film Festival is one of the most memorable ever.




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