The Cannes Film Festival’s companion competition section, Un Certain Regard, has unveiled its picks for best in show with the top prize going to Border (Grans) from Iranian-Danish director Ali Abbasi. The fantasy thriller is based on a novella written by Let The Right One In‘s John Ajvide Lindqvist. Neon acquired domestic early in the festival.
The film centers on a customs officer with an uncanny knack for sniffing out guilt. But when she develops a strange attraction to the suspect she’s investigating, the case’s revelations call into question her entire existence. Films Boutique is handling international.
Winning for Best Performance is cisgender actor Victor Polster for Girl by Belgian debut helmer Lukas Dhont. Widely praised, Polster plays Lara, a determined 15-year-old committed to becoming a professional ballerina. With the support of her father, she throws herself into the quest. But her adolescent frustrations and impatience are heightened as she realizes her body does not bend so easily to the strict discipline, because she was born a boy.
Best Screenplay went to Meryem Benm’Barek for her debut feature Sofia about a 20-year-old woman who lives with her parents in Casablanca and finds herself breaking the law by giving birth out of wedlock with 24 hours to provide the father’s papers before the authorities become involved.
Cannes veteran Sergei Loznitsa won Best Director for Donbass, which opened the UCR section. The drama is set in the titular region of Eastern Ukraine where a hybrid war takes place and society begins to degrade as the effects of propaganda and manipulation surface in a post-truth era. Pyramide International has sales.
The Special Jury Prize winner was Brazilian/Portuguese documentary The Dead And The Others (Chuva E Cantoria Na Aldeia Dos Mortos) from directors Joao Salaviza and Renée Nader Messora.
Benicio Del Toro chaired the jury which said today, “We feel that out of 2,000 films considered by the festival, the 18 we saw in Un Certain Regard — from Argentina to China — were all in their own way winners. Over the past 10 days, we were extremely impressed by the high quality of the work presented, but in the end we were the most moved by” the film films above.