For the second year running, the Cannes Palme d’Or, the festival’s top prize, has been awarded to a film not widely seen by critics as the best in competition. Last year, Ken Loach’s I, Daniel Blake (2016) won the prize over the film that many believed the worthy winner, Toni Erdmann (2016). At this year’s festival, Andrey Zvyagintsev’s Loveless was an early favourite, followed by Robin Campillo’s 120 Beats Per Minute, but instead, Pedro Almodóvar and his jury awarded the prize to The Square, from Force Majeure director Ruben Östlund.
The film has received mixed but positive reviews since its screening at the festival. Owen Gleiberman at Variety claimed it to be “more outrageous but less effective than Force Majeure,” while Geoff Andrew said that the “witty, thought-provoking” film was his favourite contender for the Palme d’Or.
Starring Elisabeth Moss and Dominic West, The Square is a satire which tells the story of a museum director at the Stockholm Palace, who stages a new exhibition called ‘The Square’ and founds a PR company to help promote it. Watch a clip from the film below.
The favourites did not leave the festival empty-handed, however. Loveless was awarded the Jury prize, while 120 Beats Per Minute won the Grand Prix. Nicole Kidman, who starred in several films featured at the festival, won a 70th Anniversary prize, while the Best Actor and Best Actress prizes went to Joaquin Phoenix for You Were Never Really Here and Diane Kruger for her performance in Fatih Akin’s In the Fade. The Caméra d’Or, the prize for the best debut feature, went to Léonor Serraille’s Jeune Femme, while Best Director went to Sofia Coppola for The Beguiled (one of those starring Nicole Kidman). Best Short Film went to A Gentle Night, and the Best Screenplay was awarded to two films, both of which were received well by critics: Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Killing of a Sacred Deer and Lynne Ramsay’s You Were Never Really Here, the film for which Joaquin Phoenix won his Best Actor award.
2017 Main Competition winners:
Palme d’Or: Ruben Östlund – The Square
Gran Prix: Robin Campillo – 120 Beats Per Minute
Jury Prize: Andrey Zvyagintsev – Loveless
Best Director: Sofia Coppola – The Beguiled
Best Actor: Joaquin Phoenix – You Were Never Really Here
Best Actress: Diane Kruger – In the Fade
Best Screenplay: Yorgos Lanthimos – The Killing of a Sacred Deer, Lynne Ramsay – You Were Never Really Here
Camera d’Or: Léonor Sérraille – Jeune Femme
Short Film Palme d’Or: Qiu Yang – A Gentle Night
Special 70th Anniversary Award: Nicole Kidman
2017 Un Certain Regard winners:
Un Certain Regard Prize: Mohammad Rasoulof – A Man of Integrity
Best Actress: Jasmine Trinca – Fortunata
Best Poetic Narrative: Mathieu Amalric – Barbara
Best Direction: Taylor Sheridan – Wind River
Jury Prize: Michel Franco – April’s Daughter
2017 International Critics Week winners:
Nespresso Grand Prize: Emmanuel Gras – Makala
France 4 Visionary Award: Fellipe Gamarano Barbosa – Gabriel and the Mountain
Leica Cine Discovery Prize for Short Film: Laura Ferrés – Los Desheredados
Gan Foundation Support for Distribution Award: Fellipe Gamarano Barbosa – Gabriel and the Mountain
SACD Award: Léa Mysius – Ava
Canal+ Award: Aleksandra Terpińska – The Best Fireworks
2017 Director’s Fortnight winners:
Art Cinema Award: Chloé Zhao – The Rider
SACD Award: Claire Denis – Let the Sunshine In, Philippe Garrel – Lover for a Day
Europa Cinemas Label Award: Jonas Carpignano – A Ciambra
Illy Prize for Short Film: Benoit Grimalt – Back to Genoa City