The 12th edition of Les Films de Cannes à Bucarest brings to Romanian audiences, as always, the most important and awarded films of the year, adapting to the public health conditions so as to offer access to films in conditions of safety and comfort.

This year the festival will hold screenings in four cinema halls of Bucharest: Cinema Elvire Popesco, Peasant Museum Cinema, National Art Museum – Auditorium Hall and Cinema Union. The occupancy rate of the halls and the access conditions will be following the guidance of authorities for the period in which the festival takes place, 22 – 31 October. There will also be open-air screenings at the Pergola of Verona Garden, behind Cărturești Verona Bookstore – and part of the films and events will also take place online. At the same time, local editions of the event will take place in Iași, Cluj and Timișoara.

Cannes Film Festival resumed this year after a cancelled edition in 2020, due to the pandemic, being organised in August and benefiting from a wide selection of films, as a result of the cancellation of the previous edition. The jury, led by the eccentric filmmaker Spike Lee, was star-studded with members such as Mylène Farmer, Mélanie Laurent, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Song Kang-Ho. Renowned filmmakers have returned to Cannes this year, great films as well as surprises at the award ceremony have been abundant, and Les Films de Cannes à Bucarest will bring an incredible selection of the award-winning films for the first time in Romania: Titane, the Palme d’Or winner, A Hero, winner of Grand Prix, Memoria, which has been awarded with Prix du Jury, Drive my car, Best Screenplay and FIPRESCI Award and The Worse Person in the World, winner of the Best Actress Award.

The winner of Palme d’Or, TITANE, the second film of Julia Ducournau, sparked a wave of shocking reactions even before its screening, with an intriguing poster, a colourful trailer and a bizarre synopsis: „after a series of unexplained murders, a father reunited with his son who disappeared 10 years ago. Titane is the French word for titanium, a metal highly resistant to heat and corrosion, with high tensile strength alloys.”

The film approaches violence as “the beginning of something important, like a shaking of very stiff foundations”, says its director. It also examines the themes of parentage and love or, to be more precise, of how love is born. Upon being awarded with the coveted Palme d’Or, the filmmaker said: “There is so much beauty, emotion and freedom to be found in what cannot be put in a box. Thank you to the jury for the call for more diversity in our cinema experiences and in our lives. Thanks for letting the monsters in.” Like the jury, the film critics were stunned : „ the magic of Titane is also owed to the grace with which Ducournau threads the needle between clarity and madness, shock and recognition, throttle and clutch”, writes Indiewire. „Ducournau’s filmmaking is as pure as her themes are profane: Titane is gorgeous to look at, to listen to, to obsess over, and fetishize.” rejoices The Playlist.

Awarded with the Grand Prix, the second most important prize of the festival, A HERO, the most recent piece of Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi, the special guest of the 10th edition of Les Films de Cannes à Bucarest, tells the story of Rahim who is in prison for an unpaid debt. During a two-day leave, he tries to convince his creditor to withdraw his complaint against the payment of part of the sum. Rahim is then faced with an excruciating crisis. His intimate and provocative stories about family conflicts have brought him the public’s appreciation the critics’ praise and many awards at international film festivals. Farhadi continues to garner admiration with A Heroa superb morality play that immerses us deeply in a society’s values and rituals and keeps us guessing right to its powerful final shot”, as conveyed by Time Out.

The Jury Prize went to MEMORIA of iconic filmmaker Apichatpong Weerasethakul. „Wonderfully perplexing as any of his previous pictures” (Screen Daily), this is the Thai filmmaker’s first English language film; a bewildering drama which introduces Jessica (Tilda Swinton) who, while visiting her sister in Bogotá, befriends Agnes who is studying the human remains found in a tunnel construction site. In the neighbouring town, she meets a fisherman. They both share memories on the river shore, and suddenly Jessica can see things clearer. The films of the so-called “Asian David Lynch” have been shown in Cannes and generated immense appreciation over time, nabbing the Un Certain Regard Award in 2002, the Jury Award in 2004 and the Palme d’Or in 2010 for Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (2010).

The FIPRESCI Prize, as well as the Best Screenplay Award went to Japanese filmmaker Ryūsuke Hamaguchi for DRIVE MY CAR.

„An engrossing and exalting experience”, according to The Guardian, the film follows Yusuke Kafuku, an actor and theatre director, still struggling after the loss of his wife two years before, who agrees to direct the play Uncle Vanya in Hiroshima. There he meets Misaki, an introverted young woman, assigned to be his chauffeur. Between walks, secrets from the past and honest confessions will be revealed. Japanese director Ryūsuke Hamaguchi has exploded on the arthouse stage with his films that highlight interpersonal relationships. Asako I & II debuted in the Cannes competition in 2018, and in 2021 he hit the major international film festivals with two films, Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy, winner of the Silver Bear at the Berlinale and Drive My Car, winner in Cannes.

Best Actress Award was given to Renate Reinsve for her role in THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD, directed by Joachim Trier. The film closes the Oslo Trilogy of Joachim Trier with „the romantic drama for people who hate romantic dramas” (The Toronto Star), a film about the search for love and meaning set in contemporary Oslo. The film follows four years in the life of Julie (Renate Reinsve), a young woman who goes through romantic storms, struggles to make a career and tries to figure out, lucidly, who she really is. Slant Magazine writes that „the film may be the prime example of how to restore fun, significance, and even a little bit of sex to a well-worn genre”. Coming from a family of filmmakers, it is no surprise that Joachim Trier chose this path. But his style and finesse, his dense study of characters marked him as a new voice in European cinema, as can be seen in his films, Oslo, August 31st (2011) and Louder Than Bombs (2015), and, now, The Worst Person in the World, which will have its national premiere at the festival.

Evoking the statement of general delegate of Cannes Film Festival, Thierry Frémaux, the 12th edition of Les Films de Cannes à Bucarest aims „to bring cinema back to life, to protect artists, to showcase the starts and to help the industry. It is a universal vision. Cinema is never uniform, it changes, it improves and all the festivals must adapt. The festival supports the cinema, and this needs cinema halls. The film theatre hasn’t had its last word yet. The multiplication of platforms around the world means that, as time goes by, traditional cinema halls will prove their unique strength”.

The festival programme, details about the parallel events as well as information about the sale of tickets will be available soon on the website: www.filmedefestival.ro and also on our Facebook and Instagram page.

Les Films de Cannes à Bucarest is presented by Orange România, traditional partner of the event.

Inspired by: UniCredit Bank

With support from: Sun Wave PharmaApa NovaGroupamaDacin SaraMercure HotelsCatena

A cultural Project financed by: Ministry of Culture and National IdentityRomanian Film CenterSACDFrench Embassy in Romania and French Institute in Romania. 

Project co-financed by Bucharest City Hall through ARCUB as part of the programme Bucharest – Open City 2021. For detailed information about the Financing Programme of Bucharest City Hall through ARCUB, you can access www.arcub.ro

Official car: Renault

Festival’s coffee: Nespresso

Festival’s hub: Lokal

Partners: National Musem of Art of RomaniaRomanian Peasant CinemaRomanian CinemathequeAvanpostMultimedia EstEuropa CinemasServeCărturești BookstersVerona GardenEventbook

Main media partners: Radio Guerrilla, AgerpresTVR

Media partners: Zile și NopțiCinemapCinemagiaZiarul MetropolisFilm MenuiQAdsSmarkMovie NewsLiterNetThe InstituteRFIELLESenso TVTonicaAARCCineGhidMunteanuRadio România CulturalBlitz TVDentsu

The 12th edition of Les Films de Cannes à Bucarest is organised by Asociația Cinemascop and Voodoo Films.