Bruno Barde
Direc­tor of the Festival

Since the 18th cen­tu­ry, the idea of Man’s replace­ment obscured dis­cern­ment, the golem myth lat­er adapt­ed to film pro­duced Franken­stein, ren­der­ing the idea obso­lete, unless one wished to cre­ate mon­sters. The dan­ger of arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence is upon us, and though it has long been used pru­dent­ly in film, today it takes the form of an ogre that threat­ens dub­bing, set design and screen­writ­ing, and extends its dei­cide by rais­ing actors from the dead. So yes, we sup­port this strike, for any attempt to replace Man is, from an artis­tic and onto­log­i­cal point of view, an apo­r­ia. Cre­ation remains the prop­er­ty of Man.

Of course, the actors join­ing the writ­ers on the pick­et line on July 14th gave us no cause for cel­e­bra­tion, but rather cast a nag­ging and grim shad­ow over the fes­ti­val. How­ev­er, unlike oth­er con­flicts in the world, this one caus­es no deaths. We’ve held fast to the pro­gram, despite the with­draw­al of cer­tain hon­ored celebri­ties. The essen­tial thing remains the work itself, and audi­ences will be able to dis­cov­er the films and meet the direc­tors, sev­er­al of whom will be in attendance.

Deauville looks at the world, assum­ing its role as tomorrow’s ora­cle. But envi­sion­ing the world means giv­ing it a face, the face of cin­e­ma. Thus cre­at­ing a face-off, a shot-reverse-shot. In a pow­er­ful scene in his mag­nif­i­cent The Fabel­mans, Steven Spiel­berg shows that truth is what cin­e­ma makes us see. Jonathan Glazer’s sub­lime film The Zone of Inter­est, a true Palme d’Or, illus­trates this. Com­ing after Michael Haneke’s The White Rib­bon and Ter­rence Malick’s A Hid­den Life, this film points to the “ad libi­tum” nature of absolute evil, a pre­cur­sor and verdi­gris echo of what is spread­ing like ago­nies today. Mar­co Bellocchio’s mas­ter­ful Kid­napped, an event at the last Cannes Film Fes­ti­val, shows the dan­ger of excess in an inquisi­to­r­i­al Italy.

Thus does truth become the quest of each of us and every work, mak­ing us look­outs for beau­ty and mes­sen­gers of hope. Deauville, which hosts the best of cin­e­ma in Sep­tem­ber, becomes a seeker’s chal­ice, scru­ti­niz­ing the world’s throes and joys on screen. But if cin­e­ma shows, what does it say? It recounts life and films its user man­u­al, man­i­fest­ing equal parts imag­i­na­tion and filth as grace revealed. Just as words set­tle into mem­o­ry through lit­er­a­ture, film­ing makes the work’s liv­ing mate­r­i­al flesh, adding to mem­o­ry by way of the gaze.

Cin­e­ma is what is added, the “Joseph” of the world. Hence the cin­e­mat­ic arts invite us toward intro­spec­tion or spir­i­tu­al con­ver­sion, for those who aspire to it. Here, faced with these works, we shake each oth­er, we heck­le each oth­er, we look at each oth­er, we ques­tion each oth­er, we rebel, dis­cuss and embrace each oth­er… We resist. Here, we are liv­ing beings. Each square of the stud­ied image resem­bles each square of skin; an eter­nal Eden.

In Deauville, we drop the shad­ows’ attire and don appar­el of glass, and see dev­as­tat­ing dawn break on the hori­zon of dreams and the screen of desire born under tor­tured flesh. Here, opin­ion is fleet­ing, but thought per­sists. With over 50 films, trib­utes that enshrine in mem­o­ry and jurors who, tak­ing after Guil­laume Canet and Mélanie Thier­ry, hon­or us with their tal­ent, the fes­ti­val affirms and pre­serves this ter­ri­to­ry, this “Aval­on” realm where all things are pos­si­ble, where lib­er­ty is redis­cov­ered in the love of char­i­ty, whose Lady in the Lake is cinema’s sentinel.

I’m booking my place ! 

Join us to fol­low the com­pe­ti­tion and meet the guest tal­ents of the Festival!


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