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The Tree Of Life Wins The Palme D'Or
Terrence Malick drama triumphs in Cannes

22 May 2011  |  Written by Tom Ambrose  

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Terrence Malick's The Tree Of Life has picked up the Palme D'Or at the closing ceremony of the 64th Cannes Film Festival.

The long-delayed drama, starring Brad Pitt, Jessica Chastain and (in a role that seems to have suffered in the editing room) Sean Penn, was booed by a minority at its first screening in Cannes, but got the nod from the jury ahead of much-vaunted entries like The Artist, We Need To Talk About Kevin and Le Havre.

It's an interesting choice, one that our man in Cannes, Damon Wise, has called 'predictable'. It could lead to accusations that the jury - led by Robert De Niro and including Jude Law and Uma Thurman - played it safe by giving the festival's biggest prize to a film, and director, that feels very much like it belongs at Cannes.

However, The Tree Of Life has been hailed by many as a worthy winner, and this could be the start of a long road to the Oscars next year.

The jury also gave Best Director to Nicolas Winding Refn. He may be Danish, but his movie, Drive, is a hugely impressive American crime thriller, and he was a popular choice, giving a very funny speech while picking up his award.

Continuing the Denmark/America theme, Kirsten Dunst was given Best Actress for her turn in Melancholia. In the wake of Lars von Trier's exclusion from the Festival, it may be a small surprise that his film picked up anything, but Dunst was a worthy winner.

Best Actor went to the brilliant Jean Dujardin for his dazzling turn in The Artist, while the Dardennes Brothers and Nuri Bilge Ceylan shared the Grand Prix for their films, The Kid With A Bike and Once Upon A Time In Anatolia.

The Jury Prize went to Polisse, while the Camera D'Or - for best first film - went to Las Acacias.


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