1 JULY 2013


You could blame a joyless Cannes Film Festival this year on the weather. It was cold (comparatively) and raining most of the days. Showing movies alone never did it. It's the "ambiance" that counts. More important is the AUDIENCE. People who crowd around the stairs leading to the red carpet, sipping their drinks at Mocca opposite the street or having pizza at Caffe Roma or seeking a table at Astoux or 24 at Suquet near the Old Town. Also viewers welcoming a new film or encouraging a new actress. For all, the sunshine and a starry night sky are needed. Same regarding aspiring young men and women (who would do anything to present themselves, preferably in bikinis at the beaches of La Croisette in the Carre d'Or between the Majestic Carlton, and Martinez).

Bad weather spoils the mood. But then there were no real impressive new movies either. Some were presented as a new approach or an unusual vision. Some foreign names were singled out to display diversity. Hollywood icon Steven Spielberg was brought in to chair a selection committee. Sharon Stone, always a good draw, stayed half an hour drive away, choosing to stay -- in a show of very good taste -- at the Cap-Eden-Roc d'Antibes scenic hotel. Michael Douglas, obsessed with his ego, was hardly noticed despite his desperate attempts at humour in imitating Liberace.

Apparently, the main beneficiaries were jewel thieves: those who emptied the safe of a famous jeweler's employee at an average Cannes hotel, and the Pink Panthers who took off with another famous jeweler's precious boxes.

At least they spared the symbolic gold prize of the Festival: The Palm d'Or.