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Cannes Film Festival (5/11-22/05).



The beer is cold and it is free. The sky s a warm azure azure /az·ure/ (azh´er) one of three metachromatic basic dyes (A, B, and C).

az·ure
n.
Any of various dyes used in biological stains, especially for blood and nuclear staining.
 canopy. The Mediterranean, just off the end of the Canadian Pavilion's wooden deck, is that same sky's inviting blue mirror. People are herded inside to hear new Telefilm tel·e·film  
n.
A film produced for television broadcasting.

Noun 1. telefilm - a movie that is made to be shown on television
 Canada boss Wayne Clarkson introduce Canada's two pre--eminent film directors, David Cronenberg and Atom Egoyan. They speak genuinely about how proud they are to be Canadian filmmakers who have films in Official Competition at the most prestigious film festival in the world. Transplanted American filmmaker Stuart Samuels, who also has a film in the festival, speaks supportively about how movies can get funded in Canada. Applause all around from the assembled, and it's quite an assembly of industry and media types--there's Robert Lantos; there's Liam Lacey of The Globe and Mail: there's Piers Handling of the Toronto International Film Festival: there's ... well, you get the idea. Smiles are smiled all around and it is a grand day for Canadian cinema.

All the while, I am thinking: what happens if Stephen Harper becomes Prime Minister? Beyond the impressive international selection of films on offer; beyond the happy accident of sitting at a table next to Salma Hayek at a tiny restaurant; beyond the cluster of remarkable films coming out of small independent republics of the former Yugoslavia--my experience of Cannes 2005 was dominated by a decidedly Canadian set of uncertainties. First, outside the many cinemas along La Croisette and way back home in Canada, there was the minority parliament of Paul Martin's Liberals. Should the government fall and an election be held, and the Conservative Party of Canada For the historical political party, see Conservative Party of Canada (pre-1942)
The Conservative Party of Canada (French: Parti conservateur du Canada), colloquially known as the "Tories", is a conservative political party in Canada, formed by the merger of the
 win that would likely signal trouble for the perennially precarious Canadian film industry, given the avowedly U.S. friendly "free market" philosophy of the now non-progressive Conservatives.

Meanwhile, up on the screen, me Canadian films looked somehow not so obviously Canadian. David Cronenberg's A History of Violence is set in Indiana, written by an American, and stars Viggo Mortensen and Ed Harris For other persons of the same name, see Edward Harris.

Edward Allen Harris (born November 28, 1950) is an Academy Award-nominated American actor, known for his performances in The Right Stuff, The Abyss, Apollo 13, Pollock, and
: Stuart Samuels's Midnight Movies is a documentary about American cult film classics such as Night of the Living Dead, Rocky Horror Picture Show, and Eraserhead; only Egoyan's Where the Truth Lies seems to maKe any direct Canadian connection Finding Canada in any meaningful sense is difficult in at least two of these "Canadian" films. "Does that matter?," I am asked by several people. The eternal question. Some argue that it does not affirm the uncertainty of our national border. I wonder. If so. what are the implications of such a position? It appears that the only certainty--except for no 2005 Stanley Cup Stanley Cup: see hockey, ice.
Stanley Cup

Trophy awarded annually to the winning team of the National Hockey League championship. Named for its donor, the Canadian governor-general Frederick Arthur Stanley, Lord Stanley of Preston
 winner--is that the definition of what constitutes a Canadian film appears, at least here in Cannes, to be shifting. That shift should be examined with unflinching honesty about what it really means.

But enough of Canuck uncertainty! This is the south of France South of France south n the South of France → le Sud de la France, le Midi , the Mount Olympus Mount Olympus: see Cyprus; Olympic Mountains; Olympus.  of film festivals, the richest and most decadent gathering of movie stars in the world. The 58th edition of Cannes was, on paper at least (critical opinions of this year's crop varied wildy, comme d'habitude) one of the strongest in years, with new films from world cinema greats such as Cronenberg, Egoyan, Wim Wenders, Michael Haneke. Gus Van Sant SANT South African Native Trust , Lars von Trier Trier (trēr), Latin Augusta Treverorum, city (1994 pop. 99,183), Rhineland-Palatinate, SW Germany, a port on the Moselle (Ger. Mosel) River, near the Luxembourg border. , Jim Jarmusch, Johnnie To, Hou Hsiao-Hsien
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Hou.


Hou Hsiao-Hsien (Traditional Chinese: 侯孝賢; Simplified Chinese:
 and the brothers Dardenne (who captured the Palme Pal·me   , Olaf 1927-1986.

Swedish politician. As premier (1969-1976 and 1982-1986) he was widely respected for his efforts toward peace and disarmament. Palme was assassinated in 1986.
 d'Or with L'Enfant). In addition to the official competition lineup, there was the world premiere of George Lucas's latest Star Wars instalment, and a well-regarded offering from the ever-prolific Woody Allen, Match Point. In addition to the considerable contemporary cinematic riches, there was the peerless Cannes Classics section, offering up restored prints of films by Michael Powell, Louis Malle, Satyajit Ray, Emilio Fernandes and Luis Bunuel, as well as new documentaries about Ingmar Bergman and by Jean-Luc Godard.

As usual at this cinematic Mecca, away from the paparazzi pa·pa·raz·zo  
n. pl. pa·pa·raz·zi
A freelance photographer who doggedly pursues celebrities to take candid pictures for sale to magazines and newspapers.
 and the red carpets, tucked into small market screenings, there were wonders to be found. For example, from Italy there was Francesco Munzi's Saimir. Reminiscent of early Pasolini, this spare and tough-minded film chronicles the coming of age of a young Italian man of Albanian parentage PARENTAGE. Kindred. Vide 2 Bouv. Inst. n. 1955; Branch; Line.  who helps his father smuggle smug·gle  
v. smug·gled, smug·gling, smug·gles

v.tr.
1. To import or export without paying lawful customs charges or duties.

2. To bring in or take out illicitly or by stealth.
 Albanians into Italy. Then there was Igor Sterk's Tuning from Slovenia (a small cinematic powerhouse, the most consistently impressive national cinema in Europe these days), a mature, minimalist portrait of a long-standing marriage gone stagnant. Also from Slovenia was Desperado Tonic, an omnibus film by four young directors about cinema itself, and one of the year's most inventive, unpredictable, thoroughly enjoyable film experiences. From Croatia came Tomislav Radic's low-budget gem, What Iva Recorded. It's a clever comedic drama involving a birthday party, a video camera and an expected guest who never turns up.

While 16-year-old Iva records the evening on her new camera, the family squabbles and fights, loves and laughs, and a microcosmic portrait of the tensions of Croatian society is rendered with intensity and humour.

In spite of these impressive international film experiences, at Cannes 2005, Canada just won't let go. Incredibly, mere days after the gathering at the Canadian Pavilion, Conservative MP Belinda Stronach crossed the floor to join the Liberals. The Liberals survived the vote and there will be no summer election. The filmmakers I spoke to in Cannes were visibly relieved al the news. Their dread of anticipated draconian Conservative cultural funding cuts has been stilled. For now. As ever in Canadian cinema circles, here and back home, nothing is certain except uncertainty.
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Title Annotation:FESTIVAL WRAPS
Author:McSorley, Tom
Publication:Take One
Date:Sep 1, 2005
Words:912
Previous Article:Gabriella Martinelli's: Little Black Book.
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