2019 Cannes Film Festival winners, there’s something prestigious.
Every year, the Cannes Film Festival is packed full of some of the most notable films of the year, and this year’s slate, which included entries from directors such as Quentin Tarantino, Terrence Malick, and Bong Joon-ho (and even a TV series from Nicolas Winding Refn), was no exception to the rule.
The films showing at the festival — and all of its different sections, including the Directors’ Fortnight and Critics’ Week — were a thrill to take in, acting as something of a harbinger for a wonderful year of movies to come. To help you keep an eye out for the best of the fest as they hit theaters in the coming year, we’ve put together a list of the five best films at the festival, as well as one honorable mention, and and the full list of competition winners.
As a slight entry in a festival sidebar during a stacked year, Deerskin can’t quite compete with the big films in the Official Selection, but it’s so singular that it can’t be forgotten, either. Starring Jean Dujardin as a man named Georges, the film, which runs just under 80 minutes, is all about one man’s quest to make his jacket the only jacket in the world.
The further the story gets, the more macabre it becomes, but it’s hilarious all the way through, with Georges preening every time he catches a glimpse of himself and his deerskin jacket in a reflective surface (“Killer style!”) and insisting to everyone he meets that he’s a style icon. Quentin Dupieux’s latest work is one long, extended riff on that single beat, feeling like a Tim Robinson sketch stretched out to its wildest extreme.
Director Ken Loach is perhaps best known as the master of the depressing, contemporary, working-class film, and Sorry We Missed You, which sees its characters caught in the gig economy, is accordingly bleak. Loach still finds room for humor: The family around which the film revolves possess genuine love for each other, and there are moments of levity even as they struggle to make ends meet, as is true of such situations in real life.
That’s not to say, however, that the film is easy to watch; halfway through, one of the characters describes a dream in which they feel like they’re being swallowed up in quicksand, and that every renewed effort to escape it only causes them to sink further in. Needless to say, it’s an apt metaphor for the circumstances the characters are in.
Of particular note is actor Kris Hitchen, who plays Ricky, the family patriarch. His performance is remarkable as he juggles the sadness, rage, and helplessness that Ricky feels as he tries to keep up with his duties as a delivery man as well as a father.