Park Chan-wook and James Gray, favorites for an unclear Palme d’Or

Cannes (France), May 27 (EFE).- On the eve of knowing the official winners of the 75th edition of the Cannes Film Festival and with the 21 films in competition already screened, the pools are still very open, with “Decision to leave” by Park Chan-wook and James Gray’s “Armageddon Time” leading the pack.

The romantic thriller by the South Korean director, who won the Grand Jury Prize at Cannes in 2003 with “Oldboy”, has achieved the highest score from critics accredited at the festival with a sensual proposal, an intricate plot and virtuosic staging.

With a more classic style but relentless in the crudeness of his message, a dart against neoliberalism, the American James Gray is hot on his heels with a film that features stars such as Anne Hathaway and Anthony Hopkins and in which he evokes his own childhood in suburban New York in the 1980s.

If the jury, chaired by the Frenchman Vincent Lindon, takes risks, the Spanish Albert Serra has many possibilities with “Pacifiction”, a French co-production shot in Tahiti that puts the viewer in the slightly paranoid mind of a politician sent by France to the islands.

Serra puts atmospheres before discourse, creates highly suggestive images and raises reflections on politics and art, leaving the viewer to do their share of the work.

In that more radical and groundbreaking line, he competes with two veterans. On the one hand, David Cronenberg, who with “Crimes of the future”, received a standing ovation for six minutes, connects with his obsession with body terror and describes a synthetic world where pain does not exist and surgery is “the new sex”.

On the other hand is the Pole Jerzy Skolimowski, who proposes to see the world through the eyes of a donkey in “Eo”, a plea against animal abuse and against human stupidity, with few dialogues and enveloping images.

The Belgian Lukas Dhont also has options for the winners with his second feature film, “Close”, in which he questions the stereotypes of masculinity and vindicates friendship and tenderness between men, while addressing the complexity of mourning in adolescence and the feeling of guilt.

As for the interpretations, among the most applauded has been that of the Italian Pierfrancesco Favino, as that man who returns to his native Naples after 40 years in “Nostalgia” by Mario Martone, and that of the American Margaret Qualley, the trapped journalist in Nicaragua in “Stars at noon” by Claire Denis.

The last word will be the jury, who will announce the winners at the closing ceremony that will take place tomorrow, starting at 8:30 p.m. (6:30 p.m. GMT), at the Palais des Festivals de Cannes.

Lindon is the first Frenchman to chair the official jury since 2009. He was accompanied in the deliberations by the Swedish actress Noomi Rapace, the Indian Deepika Padukone, the British actress and director Rebecca Hall and the Italian Jasmine Trinca, the Iranian director Asghar Farhadi, the French Ladj Ly, the American Jeff Nichols and the Norwegian Joachim Trier. EFE


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