Hello everyone ! Le Festival de Cannes 2016 is over, so goodbye the wet red carpet, goodbye the wind which made décolleté casualties, and goodbye 3h Chinese movies without subtitles ! Ok, I stop with sarcasm because I love cinéma and the Festival de Cannes. I mean, who doesn’t ? All that glamour, all that fame… It makes us dream right ? But we intend to forget that the Festival de Cannes was originally made to promote the development of the cinema industry, to help directors to sell their films, and to give them and the actors more notoriety.
Now, we talk more about Blake Lively’s beautiful gowns, who was the best dressed, who had the most amazing make up and other superficial details, instead of talking about cinema. Yes there are cinema critics, hundreds of journalists are coming from all around the world to see movies and to write articles about them, but the majority of people who will read them are moviegoers. A large audience is not reached by those critics, but this person will become a star of will be forgotten depending on those same critics. Cannes can make you become an international star, or it can be the place where all your dreams fall appart.
But Le Festival de Cannes has an advantage that evolved over the years : it allows us to express ourselves. Cinéma has always acted as a conter power with films denonciating wars, inequalities and so on. But the Festival itself contains some of the things it denounces. For instance the gender inequalty. There are very few women in the cinema industry. Most of them are actresses but they don’t have the leading role. Men do. Almost 90% of the directors are men, and the team who made the movie is mainly composed by men. Over the years, people were more and more talking about those issues, actresses and women directors started talking about the discrimination they were attesting, and things have started to move.
For instance, there is a very strict dress code for both men and women, and women have to wear high heels. It didn’t deter Julia Roberts from taking off her pumps while ascending les marches. It was a way to show that heels are not comfortable, and that it’s riduculous to force women to wear them.
Le Festival de Cannes is also reputed for its huge parties, with a lot of wine, champagne… and taking place on rooftops such as the Hôtel Le Majestic one. Luxury is everyone. Indeed, Le Festival is not only a market where you try to sell your films, it has also became a market for brands. L’Oréal for exemple, put its egeries on the red carpet, promoting L’Oréal products. Chopard, the jeweler which designs La Palme d’Or for many years, places its massive million Dollars worthy fineries on stars, not to mention the influencers which the place have grown with the social medias.
Brands pay them to wear, to consume… their products, and to share their experiences on Instagram. Kendall Jenner eating a Magnum ice cream and evryone is forgetting about their diet and being healthy : they go to the Magnum stand to have the same ice cream than their idol. This rises an another issue : during Le Festival, we talk more about an useless reality show model making even more money, than about actors, directors… every people of the cinema industry, who came in Cannes in order to show their work and to make their place in this world. It’s hard to be a novice in this iindustry, places are hard to get, so are the respect of the spectators and the jury, and the acceptance of the critics.
Le Festival de Cannes has always been around dream, cinéma is all about making us dreaming. But the shame is that now we are dreaming of becoming famous, having followers and a lot of money. We dream our lives instead of lilving them. Cinéma is made by real people for a real audience, so stop believing that because your name is not famous you are meaningless. Your life can worth a million Dollars too, just embrace it, try to make the most out of it, and why not a movie ? After all, we are the main character or our lives, and we all deserve La Palme d’Or because life is hard and challenging, but if we are here it means that we are alive. Let’s start playing our own part.