In a Surprise Victory at Cannes, Ruben Östlund’s ‘Triangle of Sadness’ Takes Home the Palme d’Or

Meanwhile, the handful of films that emerged as critics’ favorites—Park Chan-wook’s Decision to Leave, Ali Abbasi’s Holy Spider, and Jerzy Skolimowski’s EO among them—struggled to reach the kind of overarching consensus that would guarantee them a win. (Reports that this year’s grand jury, presided over by the French actor and director Vincent Lindon, had called back some of the week’s most divisive films further added to the confusion over what would eventually emerge triumphant.)

Indeed, the most headline-grabbing films of the week have been those bringing a little Hollywood sparkle to the Croisette, from the rapturous response by the French press to Tom Cruise’s Q&A ahead of a special screening of Top Gun: Maverick, to the glitzy circus surrounding the premiere of Baz Luhrmann’s latest big-budget spectacular, Elvis, which drew particular praise for star Austin Butler.

The awards elsewhere went to an eclectic mix of filmmakers and performers. Riley Keough, best known previously for her work as an actor, picked up the Caméra d’Or—the award for a first-time filmmaker—alongside her co-director Gina Gammell for their film War Pony, the tale of young friendship on a Native American reservation in South Dakota. The best actress award went to Zar Amir Ebrahimi for her appearance in Holy Spider, in which she plays a journalist investigating a serial killer in early-2000s Iran, while the best actor award went to the Korean actor Song Kang-ho—arguably best known to Western audiences for his lead performance in Bong Joon-ho’s Palme d’Or-winning Parasite—for his role in Kore-eda’s Broker.

Finally, the best director award went to Park Chan-wook for his widely acclaimed mystery thriller Decision to Leave, and a special award was meted out on the occasion of the festival’s 75th anniversary to the Dardenne brothers, who were also tipped to be serious contenders for this year’s top prize for their drama Tori and Lokita, about the Belgian immigrant experience.

Still, Östlund’s Triangle of Sadness feels like a worthy winner—and having been snapped up already by the modish distribution outfit Neon, expect to see it on a cinema screen near you soon.

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