The winners of the 2019 Cannes Film Festival have been announced.
The big winner of the night was Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite, becoming the first South Korean film to win the coveted the Palme D’or, aka Best Film. The jury and the praise-filled critics found the Snowpiercer and The Host director to be firing on all cylinders with this dark comedy, a layered class study which you can get a taste of below.
The Grand Prix, the second-most prestigious prize of the festival, when to Senegalese drama film Atlanticsy. Director Mati Diop is the first black woman to direct a film featured In Competition at the festival.
The directing win went to Belgium filmmakers Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne for the drama Young Ahmed, while acting wins went to Antonio Banderas for Pedro Almodóvar’s highly personal Pain and Glory and Emily Beecham for Jessica Hausner’s sci-fi film Little Joe.
Check out the full list of winners below, accompanied by trailers and clips. We couldn’t find English-subtitled versions for some, so hopefully the synopsis with each helps.
- Palme d’Or: Parasite, directed by Bong Joon-ho
All unemployed, Ki-taek’s family takes peculiar interest in the wealthy and glamorous Parks for their livelihood until they get entangled in an unexpected incident.
- Grand Prix: Atlantics, directed by Mati Diop
In a popular suburb of Dakar, workers on the construction site of a futuristic tower, without pay for months, decide to leave the country by the ocean for a better future. Among them is Suleiman, the lover of Ada, promised to another.
- Jury Prize (tie): Les Misérables, directed by Ladj Ly
Stéphane joined the Anti-Crime Brigade of Montfermeil, in the 93. He meets his new teammates, Chris and Gwada, and discovers the tensions between the different groups of the district.
Les Misérables – French trailer
and Bacurau, directed by Kleber Mendonça Filho & Juliano Dornelles
A filmmaker decides to travel to a village in the interior of Brazil to make a documentary. As days go by, he begins to discover that the locals are not exactly what they appear to be and hide dangerous secrets.
- Best Actress: Emily Beecham, for Little Joe
Alice, a single mother, is a dedicated senior plant breeder at a corporation engaged in developing new species. Against company policy, she takes one home as a gift for her teenage son, Joe.
- Best Actor: Antonio Banderas, for Pain & Glory
A film director reflects on the choices he’s made in life as past and present come crashing down around him.
- Best Director: Directors Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne, for The Young Ahmed
A Belgian teenager hatches a plot to kill his teacher after embracing an extremist interpretation of the Quran.
- Best Screenplay: Portrait of a Lady on Fire, directed by Céline Sciamma
On an isolated island in Bretagne at the end of the eighteenth century, a female painter is obliged to paint a wedding portrait of a young woman.
- Special Mention of the Jury: It Must Be Heaven, directed by Elia Suleiman
Filmmaker Elia Suleiman travels to different cities and finds unexpected parallels to his homeland of Palestine.
- Camera d’Or: Our Mothers, directed by César Díaz
Guatemala, 2018. The whole country is immersed in the trial of the soldiers who sparked the civil war. Victim statements come one after another. Ernesto is a young anthropologist working for the Forensic Foundation; his job is to identify the missing. One day, while hearing the account of an old woman, he thinks he has found a lead that might guide him to his father, a guerrillero who went missing during the war. Against his mother’s wishes, he flings himself body and soul into the case, looking for truth and resilience.
- Short Film Palme d’Or: The Distance Between Us And The Sky, directed by Vasilis Kekatos
Night, national road. Two strangers meet for the first time at an old gas station. One has stopped to gas up his bike, while the other is just stranded. Lacking the 22.50EUR he needs to get home, he will try to sell him the distance that separates them from the sky.
- Special Mention of the Jury: Monster God, directed by Agustina San Martin
- Queer Palm (Feature): Portrait of a Lady on Fire, Céline Sciamma
- Queer Palm (Short): The Distance Between Us And The Sky, Vasilis Kekatos