13 best films at the Cannes Film Festival 2022

Felix Culpa/MOHO FILM/Kris Dewitte/Menuet/Fredrik Wenzel (c) Plattform/les films du losange

This year’s Cannes Film Festival lineup was filled with films from a wide range of performers and filmmakers, from newcomers like Charlotte Wells to established authors like David Cronenberg and Claire Denis. For two weeks, stars graced the red carpet with their presence while highly anticipated movies, including big-budget premieres like Top Gun: Maverick and Elvis— made its debut on the Croisette. Spanning several sections, from in-competition and out-of-competition to Un Certain Regard and Directors’ Fortnight categories, the festival offered a great assortment of titles to look forward to in 2022.

Now that Cannes is over for the year, we’ve rounded up the 13 best films that screened at the festival and need to be added to your watchlists ASAP.

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With After SunPaul Mescal went from depressed student to normal people to enter his era of hot and depressed dad. Charlotte Wells’ directorial debut – which was first featured in International Critics’ Week section and produced by Barry Jenkins – follows a young father named Calum (Mescal) and his 11-year-old daughter, Sophie (a stellar Frankie Corio in her on-screen debut) as they vacation at a Turkish seaside resort in the 1990s. After Sun is a beautiful and emotionally-rich story featuring heartbreaking performances from its protagonists. The final moments are guaranteed to make you sob afterwards.

Completing Paul Mescal’s perfect double feature, God’s Creatures is the actor’s second film to debut at Cannes this year. Set in a small fishing village in Ireland, the film stars Emily Watson – who is finally given a lead role worthy of her incredible talent and scope – as a mother whose life begins to fall apart after was forced to decide whether to continue to protect her son (played by Mescal) or accept the truth about her actions. God’s Creatures marks follow-up feature from director team Saela Davis and Anna Rose Holmer seven years after their debut Sectionsand its eerie atmosphere and stellar ensemble will certainly not disappoint.

Back on the Croisette a year later Bergman Island, the eighth feature film by French director Mia Hansen-Løve is a poignant story about love and life. With Léa Seydoux in her best performance to date, A nice morning centers on Sandra, a single mother who falls in love with an old friend, Clément (Melvil Poupaud) while struggling to watch her aging father’s (Pascal Gregory) health deteriorate as he suffers from a neurodegenerative disease. Every aspect of the film is steeped in reality and authenticity, from the electrifying chemistry between Sandra and Clement to the simple yet beautiful way in which cinematographer Denis Lenoir captures Paris.

Fresh off of her first Oscar nomination for spencer, Kristen Stewart made her triumphant return to Cannes after serving on the jury in 2018. There’s no better film to mark the occasion than a visceral and bloody work from body horror king David Cronenberg. and with Léa Seydoux, Viggo Mortensen and Scott Speedman. Set in the near future in which no one has the ability to feel pain, Future Crimes is a bonkers film that thoughtfully explores human evolution and captures Stewart at his most unhinged. It is currently set to hit theaters on June 3.

Winner of this year’s Camera d’Or for Best First Feature, actress Riley Keough’s feature debut alongside her producing partner Gina Gammell is a stunning film not to be missed. A brutally honest portrayal of Rez’s life, war pony takes place over several months and follows two young Oglala Lakota men, Bill (Jojo Bapteise Whiting), 23, and Matho (Ladainian Crazy Thunder), 12, who do not know each other but share a lot in common as they grow up in Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. The movie is filled with plenty of heart and soul, making it a fitting entry in the growing list of coming-of-age movies set in America. Come see Keough flex her directorial skills, stay for a heartbreaking tale that shines a light on Native American life and features some remarkable first-time performers.

One of two Un Certain Regard titles starring Vicky Krieps this year, the other being the equally brilliant More than everBodice is a true gem of the festival. In Marie Kreutzer’s 1877 period drama, Krieps gives a superb performance as Duchess Elisabeth Amalie Eugenie in Bavaria, the Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary, who feels imprisoned by the pressures of being a woman. . Bodice is a charming, fun, and boundary-pushing take on the historical genre akin to Marie Antoinette (2006) and spencer (2021). As if we couldn’t praise Krieps enough, the brilliant actress also won Best Performance in the UCR section.

May we introduce you to this year’s Palme d’Or winner: Ruben Östlund’s triangle of sadness, which marks the director’s second win of the coveted top prize. Östlund’s English language debut is definitely the craziest film to premiere in competition at Cannes this year, and I guarantee you won’t be able to help but laugh throughout. Largely on a luxury cruise, it focuses on models Carl (a pitch-perfect Harris Dickinson) and Yaya (Charlbi Dean Kriek) as they endure an increasingly chaotic journey alongside a drunk Marxist captain played by Woody Harrelson and a group of rich and dirty passengers ranging from a Russian oligarch and his wife and mistress to an English couple who made their fortunes from landmines. Told in three chapters, triangle of sadness is a satire full of twists and turns until its final moments that also weaves itself thoughtfully into critique and commentary on capitalism and class.

Owen Kline, the actor best known for his role in Noah Baumbach The squid and the whale when he was a teenager, made his directorial debut with funny pageswhich has the Safdie Brothers (Good time, Uncut Gems) on board as producers. Set in suburban New York, this coming-of-age story centers on Robert (Daniel Zolghadri), a protected teenage cartoonist who isn’t taken seriously and dreams of getting out of his small town and making it. grow in the world. of comics. After moving into a filthy basement shared with two older men and landing a job in a public defender’s office, he meets Wallace (Matthew Maher), a former color mixer at the iconic Image Comics label. , which clearly has violent tendencies. funny pages is a dark, utterly hilarious, and at times horrifying film that will become a cult favorite once released.

Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda, who has previously directed always walk and Shopliftersfollows its disappointing debut in English in 2019, The truth, with a seductive film that explores complex subjects through a lighthearted tone. Along with Song Kang-ho, who won Best Actor for Outstanding Performance, Gang Dong-won, Bae Doona, and Lee Ji-eun, Broker tells the story of a young woman who abandons her baby and then joins the two men who try to profit from the illegal adoption of the child. Maintaining its family-centric theme, Kore-eda paints a tender portrait of an unconventional family and the kind of love and bonding that results.

The fourth collaboration in the nearly 15-year artistic partnership between Michelle Williams and Kelly Reichardt, which includes Wendy and Lucia (2008), Meek Cut (2010), and Some women (2016)—To show up is a perfect film about the banality of life. Taking place over the span of a week, it stars Williams as Lizzy, a sculptor preparing for the opening of her show while balancing the turmoil that continues to arise throughout her personal life, d a pigeon injured due to the lack of hot water in his house. Although To show up is not a movie loaded with intrigue, Williams’ natural and moving performance mixed with Reichardt’s ability to capture the beauty of simple moments makes for a memorable slice of life film.

Grand Prix winner Lukas Dhont’s second feature after his controversial 2018 debut Daughteris a heartbreaking queer coming-of-age story that tackles grief and adolescence with genuine care. close centers on the love and friendship between two inseparable 13-year-old boys that ends tragically. With powerful performances from its newest stars, Eden Dambrine and Gustav de Waele, and visually stunning shots that add to its emotional depth, close is a beautiful film that leaves a lasting impact long after the credits begin.

A highlight of this year’s Cannes competition that has flown under the radar is Leila’s brothers, a stunning family drama directed by Iranian filmmaker Saeed Roustayi. It centers on the titular Leila (Taraneh Alidoosti), her four unemployed and/or broke brothers (played by Navid Mohammadzadeh, Payman Maadi, Farhad Aslani and Mohammad Ali Mohammadi) and their father (Saeed Poursamimi) as they struggle to stay afloat. and improve their lives, with Leila trying to convince her brothers to start a business together and their father attempting to take over the role of patriarch in his extended family clan. Although Leila’s brothers a long duration seems foreign at first, its slowness working in its favor to present a strong whole and a captivating narrative.

Park Chan-wook’s first film in six years may not be as bold or visceral as The servant, but it’s still a compelling work, anchored by the phenomenal performances of Park Hae-il and Tang Wei. A slow-burning neo-noir with a romantic core, Decision to leave centers on the mysterious death of a man at the foot of a mountain that creates an attraction between the man’s wife and the detective investigating his possible murder. Crafted with stunning visuals and a richly layered narrative, Park’s sultry police procedural won him the Best Director award at the festival.

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