Cannes’ disproportion

Article published on May 24, 2008
community published
Article published on May 24, 2008
Thursday May 22nd, 4PM, Grand Théâtre Lumière: this is the end of the screening of Frontier of Dawn (La Frontière de l'aube) directed by Philippe Garrel taking part in the Official Competition. The audience’s reception is cold, icy even. It hoots, it whistles in the theatre… (without mentioning the ceaseless movements of all these exasperated spectators running out of the theatre).

The following day, the cinema critics broke out in the press. Frontier of Dawn is attacked in the majority of the daily newspapers: plastically too beautiful (a very contrasted black and white), close to ridiculous in the second part of the film with the “fantastic reminiscences”, with dialogues leading to nothing, a flat film, without real interest,…

Although adhering partly to this opinion (in particular concerning the fantastic treatment that one supposes to be a clumsiness of the director), I still found in Frontier of Dawn what I had so much appreciated in Regular Lovers (Les amants criminels): a touching love story. In this new film, François (Louis Garrel) realizes too late how much he loved a passed away friend (Laura Smet). Then, would the romanticism have gone out of fashion?

In the fire of the action and as the Festival goes on and films come one after the other, criticisms break out more savagely. Cannes is the kingdom of disproportion. The opinions are hyper distinct: one adores or one destroys. Distance is unquestionably missed; the time necessary to digest a film does not exist here… and it is sometimes such a pity!