Cannes film festival 2019: an intriguing lineup, with big-name clout | Peter Bradshaw
Asian auteurs show exciting new work, Céline Sciamma and Mati Diop bringing verve to the festival, seasoned directors from Almodóvar to Elia Suleiman add class, and it could all kick off with Maradona
This year’s Cannes selection was unveiled under a revered image, almost a tutelary deity. The poster shows the 26-year-old Agnès Varda standing on the shoulders of a male technician, shooting her first feature La Pointe Courte. Some may feel that this is where the gender revolution begins and ends in Cannes: there are still just four women directors in competition and 13 in the selection overall. The festival argues that it is working in good faith on this issue, that it has a gender balance on its selection panel, and that meaningful progress can’t happen immediately.
Elsewhere, Cannes is sticking to its guns on the Netflix issue, despite everyone’s suspicions that it might have to shift its ground. But no. The streaming giant won’t play by the festival’s rules on theatrical distribution in France, so it doesn’t get invited to the party. However, Nicolas Winding Refn’s Too Old To Die Young – providing a sexy neon gleam to the Cannes selection – is an Amazon TV show, of which the festival will be showing episodes four and five as a feature-length programme in an out-of-competition slot.