Friday, May 16, 2008


Core issues raised as Cannes kicks off its first day

by Eric Kohn

"I don't think we went blind. I think we always were."

--Danny Glover in Blindness

CANNES, France -- Members of the press are divided into color-coded categories ranging from white to yellow badges in a system that vaguely sounds like class discrimination, but the media keeps on coming; movie stars hog the spotlight, but bump shoulders with obscure art house personalities on the red carpet; the sun beats down hard, but the weather is glorious. The innate paradoxes of the Cannes Film Festival, which began its sixty-first year on Wednesday, come from all directions. Often accused of celebrating materialistic enjoyment under the pretenses of championing film as high art, Cannes features a very particular dissonance of form and content. Sometimes, the chaos is glorious, but other times it's just plain chaotic.

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