It’s confusing and crowded, noisy and vulgar … and exhaustingly French. But I can’t wait to return to the Croisette
Coronavirus and culture – a list of major cancellations
It’s the opening day of the Cannes film festival, in some parallel world where everything remains right side up. This means that the cafes, bars and restaurants are all open for business and that the old men play boules on that strip of dirt by the bandstand. There are films inside the Palais and sideshows on the Croisette. At the morning press conference, that excitable Scandinavian reporter is again on her feet asking Brad Pitt if he has any message for the people of Finland. Seeing as we’re in Fantasyland Cannes, let’s say that for this one time only he actually does.
Cry me a river and break out the small violins but I’m going to miss the Cannes film festival this year. Even its glaring manifest faults now feel like marquee attractions. So what if it’s confusing and crowded, noisy and vulgar? How was this ever seen as a bad thing? Who cares that it’s exasperatingly French in the way it juggles arthouse austerity with glitzy Eurotrash and appears to see no distinction between the two. Again, that’s part and parcel of its charm. “All anyone does is argue about film,” a pained fellow journalist once complained as we guzzled rosé wine at some reception or other. I’d now like to go back in time and push him into the pool.