Aki Kaurismäki conquers Cannes reviewers - leads Screendaily Critics Grid

May 26, 2023
Dimitris Passas

NOTE: This article is a republication- Source: Nordisk Film & TV Fond (by Annika Pham).

As of May 23, the Finnish Palme d’or entry Fallen Leaves is on the top list of many reviewers, including Pete Hammond from Deadline who calls it a ‘flat-out gem’.

Ahead of his press conference today in Cannes, Aki Kaurismäki has already conquered the Croisette with his 4th volume in his working-class film series, filled with universal themes of love, solidarity, hope and respect for others.

Among 13 films ranked by Screendaily’s international critics grid as of Tuesday May 23, Kaurismäki has the highest average at 3.1 and three Palme d’or top scores from the US’ Time,, three stars from Le Monde in France, The Guardian in the UK and Screen Daily among others.

The film was just ahead of the other favourites May December by Todd Haynes, Anatomy of a Fall by Justine Triet with an average score of 3, but also other strong entries The Zone of Interest by Jonathan Glazer, About Dry Grass by Nuri Bilge Ceylan, and Youth Spring by Wang Bing, all sharing a 2.8 average score.

Pete Hammond from the US trade 'Deadline' who compares it to David Lean’s Brief Encounter, and Ernest Borgnine’s classic Marty, says “both those Cannes Classics have something inherently in common with Aki Kaurismäki's wonderful, wryly funny, and poignant new film”.

The film received a rapturous reception at its first press screening and at last night’s official screening at the Grand Palais Théâtre Lumiere in Cannes.

The verdict from the Cannes jury headed by the Swede Ruben Östlund, will be revealed on Saturday.

The tragi-comedy starring Alma Pöysti and Jussi Vatanen is due to open in Finland September 15 via B-Plan.

The film is produced by Sputnik and Bufo, with funding from the Finnish Film Foundation. Arthaus will release it in Norway and Folkets Bio in Sweden. The Match Factory handles world sales.

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