Twenty-one films produced in 2023 have been nominated for the main prize of the 76th Cannes Film Festival, the Palme d’Or, which will be awarded today.
Below is a summary of the 21 competing films.
- Asteroid City It is an American science fiction romantic comedy set in 1955. The film follows a group of students and their parents who travel to a fictional desert town for the annual Junior Stargazer convention.
- Area of Interest It is a German British-Polish period drama. The film, an adaptation of a novel of the same name, tells the story of a Nazi officer who falls in love with the wife of the commandant of the Auschwitz concentration camp.
- May December It’s an American romantic drama that tells the story of a couple married twenty years after their popular tabloid romance, when a Hollywood actress who sinks under the pressure meets them to research a film about their past.
- the monster It’s a 2023 Japanese drama about an expanding family through the eyes of a mother. When her young son Minato starts behaving strangely, the mother senses that something is wrong. Discovering that a teacher is responsible, he enters the school demanding to know what is going on. But as the story progresses through the eyes of the mother, the teacher and the child, the truth will emerge.
- Old Oak It is the story of a town in the North East of England where the mine has closed and the people feel abandoned by the system. Many young people have left and what was once a prosperous and proud community is struggling to keep the old values alive. But there is growing anger, resentment and hopelessness. Homes are affordable and accessible. This makes it an ideal location for the Syrian refugees Britain has accepted in recent years. How will the Syrians take them? And what will be the future of the last remaining bar in town, Old Oak?
- Firebrand It’s a take on the old British monarchy, where Catherine Parr tries to navigate English politics when she becomes the sixth wife of King Henry VIII.
- American film Black flies It tells the story of Ollie Cross, who, in pursuit of his dream to prepare for medical school, goes out driving an ambulance with Rutkovsky, a dark veteran and one of New York’s best doctors, as he spends his first year working in New York City.
- back home It’s a French drama about forty-year-old Kheìdidja, who works for a wealthy family in Paris and is offered the chance to look after their children for a summer in Corsica. With his daughters, Jessica and Farah, it is the chance to return to the island they left in tragic circumstances fifteen years earlier.
- Perfect Days It’s a Japanese-German film about Hirayama, who is perfectly content with his simple life as a toilet cleaner in Tokyo. Outside of his highly structured daily routine, he enjoys his passion for music and books. And he loves trees and taking pictures. A series of unexpected encounters gradually reveal more of his past.
- About Dried Herbs It is a Turkish film about a young teacher who hopes to be appointed to Istanbul after his mandatory service in a small town. After waiting for a long time, he loses all hope of escaping this gloomy life. However, his colleague Nuray helps him regain some perspective.
- Fallen Leaves It is a Finnish comedy-drama. The film follows the paths of Ansa, a supermarket shelf clerk on a zero-hours contract, then a recyclable plastic sorter, and Holappa, a sandblaster, alcoholic, then ex-alcoholic. accidentally crossed and, unfortunately and misunderstood, trying to build some kind of relationship with the harsher side of the welfare state.
- A Brighter Tomorrow It’s an Italian comedy about a film director who, unhappy with the film he’s shooting about a Hungarian circus in Rome during the 1956 anti-Soviet uprising, faces a divorce from his producer wife.
- Club Zero is a thriller that follows Miss Nova, who enters an international boarding school to teach a class on conscious eating. He says eating less is healthy. By the time the other teachers are slow to notice what’s going on and the distracted parents start to notice, Club Zero has become a reality.
- The Four Daughters is an Arabic documentary about a Tunisian mother of four, Olfa, whose two oldest daughters disappear. To fill their absence, filmmaker Kaouther Ben Hania invites professional actors and devises a unique cinematic experience that will lift the veil on the life stories of Olfa and her daughters.
- Anatomy of a fall It’s a French thriller. Sandra, Samuel and their visually impaired son Daniel have been living in a remote mountain place for the past year. When Samuel is found dead outside his home, a suspicious death investigation is launched. In the midst of uncertainty, Sandra is accused: was it suicide or homicide? A year later, Daniel attends his mother’s trial, a true dissection of the relationship between his parents.
- La Chimera It is a romantic film about a young British archaeologist who becomes involved in an international network of stolen Etruscan artefacts in the 1980s. The film stars Josh O’Connor and Isabella Rossellini.
- Youth (spring) It is a documentary about a group of young textile workers in the Chinese village of Zhili. Liming is a working-class district near Shanghai, China’s richest city. Every year, many young people leave their villages and go there. They are between the ages of 17 and 20, all from rural Yunnan province, 2,500 km to the west, where the Yangtze River originates. These Yunnan youth often live in their workplaces, in dormitories, unsanitary rooms or sometimes in small studios. There is a lack of time and space to come together. So QQ, MSN communicate through China. They live as adults but they are teenagers, and unstable situations, economic pressures and geographical dispersion burn their innocence and youth. Wang Bing will spend a year with them in Liming: at work, at home, on the Internet, every day of their professional, romantic and friendly relationships. At the end of the year, he will continue in the opposite direction to his home province to be with his family and celebrate the Chinese New Year.
- Banel and Adams the film is a French-Malian-Senegalese romantic film. It tells the story of young adults Banel and Adama who live in a small, remote village in northern Senegal. Adama is introverted and cautious, while Banel is passionate and rebellious, they are destined to love each other with eternal love. But the couple will be tested by the conventions of the community, because where they live there is no room for passion, let alone chaos.
- hostage It is an Italian historical drama about Edgardo Mortara, who lives in Bologna, Italy, and is forcibly taken away from his family in 1858, after being secretly baptized, to be brought up as a Christian. The parents’ fight to free their son became part of a larger political struggle that pitted the pope against the forces of democracy and Italian unity.
- Pot-au-Feu It is a French historical romance. Eugenie, an esteemed chef, has been working in Dodin fine gourmet for the past 20 years. More and more fond of each other, their bond turns into love and creates delicious dishes that surprise even the world’s most famous chefs. When Dodin is faced with Eugenie’s reluctance to commit to him, he decides to start cooking for her.
- last summer It’s a French erotic drama about a lawyer, mother of two girls, who welcomes her husband’s 17-year-old son from his first marriage into her home, with whom he would have an affair.
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