FESTIVAL IN CANNES

"Behind the Silver Screen"

Quality: Content: -1 "CAUTION"
NoneLightModerateHeavy
Language
Violence
Sex
Nudity

Summary:

FESTIVAL IN CANNES is a movie about the movie industry, featuring a story concerning aging movie stars and the men around them. FESTIVAL IN CANNES is one of the most real, poignant, disturbing, and depressing insights ever into the movie industry.

Review:

Orson Welles’ friend Henry Jaglom makes very peculiar movies, with some of the elements of cinema verite, some of the techniques of John Cassavetes and some of the insights of Woody Allen thrown into the mix. Jaglom has made a career of going his own way. That way includes a searing moral insight into the humanist culture in his movies.
FESTIVAL IN CANNES is one of the most real, poignant, disturbing, and depressing insights ever into the movie industry. It is a movie that anybody who has even wanted to be involved in the movie industry should see for the searing truth it represents.
It opens up with a very aged man, Victor, played by Maximilian Schell, reminiscing about the Cannes Film Festival, the glitz and the glamour. It then lyrically cuts to three women discussing a new script idea at an outdoor café. An obnoxious hustler recognizes one of them as Alice Palmer, a former movie star played superbly by Greta Scacchi in her best role ever. This hustler, Kaz, inserts himself into their conversation and informs them in no uncertain terms that he’s going to fund their film. He leaves and sometime later contacts them again to say that he has the funding, if Alice changes her script to feature an aging movie star named Millie, Victor’s former wife, played by Anouk Aimee, in her best role ever.
Kaz engineers a meeting with Millie, co-opting a meeting she was supposed to have with heavyweight Hollywood producer Rick Yorkin. Rick is putting together a $90 million Tom Hanks movie, and Hanks’ starlet insists that Millie appear briefly as her mother in her movie. By the time Rick’s assistant locates Millie, Alice has already pitched her on her script, and so Millie refuses to commit to Rick’s cameo role. The movie continues to play out, revealing the greed, the envy, the passion, the depression, the manipulations, the lies, and the ultimate truth involved with all these various characters, who embody the essence of the movie industry.
Not since THE PLAYER has a movie gotten so many things right about the movie industry. Unlike THE PLAYER, FESTIVAL IN CANNES doesn’t rely on a murder mystery to propel its plot. The self-deception here of these movie industry characters is incredible, and the stakes are so high that this is the norm. Vanity leads the women into forsaking their sense and sensibility. Pride leads the men into double dealing. Power corrupts, and lust compels.
FESTIVAL IN CANNES is probably Henry Jaglom’s best movie. The theater was packed. People left commenting that this is why they hated their industry. Henry’s style of filmmaking makes one moral point after another by exposing the sins of each one of these characters. There is nothing onscreen that is objectionable, but buried in every conversation is much that’s disturbing. If there was only one ray of hope penetrating this self-indulgent community, but then Henry has captured real life, not the Hollywood vision of itself. The only thing missing is the answer to this fallen world: Jesus Christ!

Content:

(H, BB, LL, S, A, D, M) Humanist worldview with strong moral points; seven obscenities and three profanities; no violence; kissing and discussions of sex, including adultery; no nudity but stars in revealing dresses in the background; alcohol use; smoking; and, moral confusion, confession.

In Brief:

FESTIVAL IN CANNES is one of the most real, poignant, disturbing, and depressing insights ever into the movie industry. A hustler inserts himself into the conversation of three women, including a former star named Alice Palmer, and informs them that he’s going to fund their movie. He gets the funding but only if Alice changes her script to feature an aging movie star named Millie. The movie continues to play out, revealing the greed, the envy, the passion, the depression, the manipulations, the lies, and the ultimate truth involved with all these various characters, who embody the essence of the movie industry.
FESTIVAL IN CANNES is probably director Henry Jaglom’s best movie. Anouk Aimee and Greta Scacchi are marvelous in their roles as Alice and Millie. An aging Maximilian Schell adds plenty of stature to his role. Not since the movie THE PLAYER has a movie gotten so many things right about the movie industry. Vanity leads the women into forsaking their sense and sensibility. Pride leads the men into double dealing. Power corrupts, and lust compels. Jaglom makes one moral point after another by exposing the sins of each one of these characters.