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Cannes is the international capital of motion-picture arts. Cannes Film Festival , privileged venue of meetings and discoveries, is the most important film event in the world. Each and every year, Cannes Film Festival becomes the key crossroads for the entire film industry. A total of over 30,000 cinema professionals, including distributors, producers, directors, actors, technicians and the media, and over 200,000 other people, meet in Cannes for 900 screenings at the Palais and numerous other cinema events. Its success and development have turned it into a vast city in which one may sometimes get lost: 30,000 professionals are accredited each and every year at the Festival or Marché du Film, including 1,000 directors, 4,000 distributors, 5,000 producers and 4,000 journalists.

The competition is the Festival's main event, and where you will find all the glamour and glory. Films in this section are referred to as being 'in competition' and compete for a variety of awards. (The festival catalogue)


The list of the competition films :

- Pedro Almodovar, Volver (Spain)
- Andre Arnold, Red Road (UK)
- Lucas Belvaux, The Right of the Weakest (Belgium)
- Rachid Bouchareb, Days of Glory (Algeria)
- Adrian Caetano, Chronicle of a Flight (Argantina)
- Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Climates (Turkey)
- Sofia Coppola, Marie-Antoinette (USA)
- Pedro Costa, Youth on the March (Portugal)
- Guillermo del toro, Pan's Labyrinth (Mexico)
- Bruno Dumont, Flandres (France)
- Nicole Garçia, According to Charlie (France)
- Xavier Giannoli, When I was a Singer (France)
- Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Babel (Mexico)
- Aki Kaurismaki, Lights in the Dusk (Finland)
- Richard Kelly, Southland tales (USA)
- Richard Linklater, Fast food nation (USA)
- Ken Loach, The Wind that Shakes the Barley (UK)
- Lou Ye, Summer Palace (China)
- Nanni Moretti, The Caiman (Italy)
- Paolo Sorrentino, The Family Friend (Italy)

Red Carpet


- Press during the festival -

...In his newest film, "Climates," a portrait of a man profoundly out of touch with his innermost self, the Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan has made one of the finest films to play the festival in competition. (His last film at Cannes, "Distant," won the grand prize in 2003.). The exquisitely observed story opens with a man and woman just minutes away from a brutal breakup, only to then shift focus to the man, a professor played by the director himself. Using a minimum of naturalistic dialogue and breathtaking compositions, and featuring a rollicking sex scene that kept the press audience in rapt silence, Mr. Ceylan renders a psychological portrait from the outside in, slowly, slowly, digging his way into a heart of stone...
Manohla Dargis, New York Times, 22 May 2006

...If 'Southland Tales' is a hugely disappointing follow-up to 'Donnie Darko', the same cannot be said for Nuri Bilge Ceylan's 'Climates', which is as subtle, substantial and sublimely beautiful as was his previous 'Uzak' ('Distant').
Like all his films to date, and again placing it at the opposite end of the spectrum from Kelly's mammoth folly, 'Climates' is both modest and (deceptively) simple, following the progress of an Istanbul couple who during a summer holiday in Kas decide – at the man's suggestion – to break up. The man starts seeing another woman, but after a while decides he misses his former partner, who's now working far away in snowy, mountainous Eastern Turkey. The climatic metaphor never feels forced, so delicately nuanced are the script, performances and quietly observant direction. That said, this is no mere slice of lyricism; a sex scene, in particular, is extraordinarily tough, and Ceylan has lost none of his willingness to probe both the less attractive aspects of everyday human behaviour and the cruel ironies of life, so that the film feels almost painfully honest.
That said, he does so with such wit, intelligence and exquisite artistry – if the Festival comes up with more visually stunning film than this, I'll be very surprised – that the film confirms him as one of the most exciting cinematic talents to emerge in recent years.

Geoff Andrew, Time out (London), 22 May 2006

...Ceylan's growing reputation as a contemporary master is confirmed by the immensely satisfying Climates, which is certainly as personal as anything we’re likely to see in Cannes, or anywhere else, this year... Climates tells a complex, understated story about the emotional distance between people, and about the psychic repressions and unshakable habits that hamper men... The maturity of Ceylan's storytelling is evident from his refusal to tell us too much: he prefers silences and finely-tuned facial expressions provide the nuances we need to fill in the blanks for ourselves. In terms of what faces can express, without ever doing too much, Climates puts Ceylan on a par with Ingmar Bergman... If Isa really does resemble Ceylan, then Climates surely offers one of the most merciless self-portraits ever seen in cinema: Isa is insecure, faithless and selfish, excessively needy and with a violent streak which emerges in his assault on Serap... but either way, Ceylan's latest hints at a richness, complexity and subtlety of feeling that are rare even among today's most revered blue-chip directors.
Jonathan Romney, Screen Daily, 24 May 2006

...'Distant' was enthralling or infuriating, depend on your threshold of love or pain for emotional minimalism. Climates was much more involving, perhaps because it's simply a better, more human film... The film covers three seasons, three locations, three climates: summer heat, autumn rain, winter snow. All photographed gloriously. In the final section, Isa now goes searching for Bahar — perhaps because he loves her, perhaps to convince himself that he could still have her if he wanted her... Even those filmgoers who are averse to the minimalist aesthetic can find reasons to praise Climates. Here are four. One is that under its cloak of aesthetic severity, Climates has a beating heart, aware of the charm, selfishness and contradictions in any person. Another is that, though Ceylan the director loves taking long closeups of Ceylan the actor, he's worth it; this is a face, craggily attractive, that rewards extended attention. A third is that the movie occasionally reveals a wry, wise sense of humor. On his second encounter with Serap, she is the one eager to have sex, he the reluctant one. As she cuddles up, he suddenly takes notice of a TV news report on a natural disaster. Won't you make love? she asks. He shakes his head. "Earthquake," he says — the Turkish equivalent of "Not tonight, dear, I have a headache." The fourth is that Climates has a real climax: at the end, as at the beginning, a tear down Bahar's cheek. This time, though, it's a lovely epiphany that fulfills and finalizes her relationship with Isa...
Mary Corliss, Time, 22 May 2006

Photo Call

Arif Asci, Can Ozbatur, Nazan Kesal, NBCeylan , Ebru Ceylan
and Mehmet Eryilmaz during the Photo Call

...Nuri Bilge Ceylan's "Climates" is the understated tale of a couple, played by Ceylan and his wife, whose emotions are mirrored by the changing seasons in Turkey. Ceylan's film, which is an early favorite among critics, takes the audience from a couple's break-up on a hot summer's day to the cool assessment of their relationship in snow-covered fields months later...
Kerstin Gehmlich, Yahoo-news, 22 May 2006

...the most accomplished competing film, Nuri Bilge Ceylan's Climates, is, like the Turkish director's previous Distant, a study in alienation...
J. Hoberman, Village Voice (NY), 23 May 2006

...Following his solemn tour de force "Distant," Turkey's Nuri Bilge Ceylan sharpens his vision like a knife with "Climates," a sparse exacting drama - stunningly photographed in crisp Hi-Def digital video...
Anthony Kaufman, Indiewire, 23 May 2006

I’m fighting back tears as I encounter the first, probably only, masterpiece of the festival. I’m in the balcony at the Debussy and am wiped out, trembling, trying to recover, having just been witness to the mesmerizing, devastating Climates by Turkish filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan. I say without equivocation he is one of the five best narrative filmmakers alive. Climates tracks the emotional and personal contours of a couple’s relationship (played by the director and his own wife, intensifying the sting of pain and regret). It’s shot on digital and is the most extraordinary, immediate use of that format I’ve ever seen. Late in the film, the man caresses his wife as she lies on a hotel bed, and the photorealistic imagery is so vital, direct, and pure, I think it’s my own hand reaching across to her.
Patrick Z. McGavin, New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), 20 May 2006

...Climates, from Turkey's Nuri Bilge Ceylan, the director of Distant, has the cool temperature of a 1960s art film - Antonioni, perhaps. It's a minutely observed study of a crumbling marriage over three seasons with a taciturn, stonily remote protagonist...
Sheila Johnston, Independent, 26 May 2006

...Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan won fulsome critical praise for his understated tale of a couple, played by Ceylan and his wife, whose emotions are mirrored by changing seasons...
The Routers, 26 May 2006

...Nuri Bilge Ceylan returned this year with Climates. It's another measured, slyly comic exploration of middle-aged men's lassitude... The film, shot on high-definition video, is startlingly attractive to behold; the sweat on Ebru's brow as she lies on a beach almost invites us to reach forward and lick it.
Sukhdev Sandhu, The Daily Telegraph, 27 May 2006

Interview with actress Ebru Ceylan

...Some films such as Turkish filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan's "The Climates" have fiercely divided camps between those who saw it as a fine art house movie and those who panned it for being plodding and self-indulgent.
Kuwait times

...It's unquestionably a powerful and absorbing work for those with patience, and it's tunningly photographed...
Andrew O'Hehir, Salon, 27 May 2006

...Turkey's elegist of existential ennui, Nuri Bilge Ceylan, comes up with his most approachable pic in "Climates," a study of a failed relationship shown largely through the eyes and mind of the middle-aged male partner. Immaculately shot and composed as always, and moving at Ceylan's usual measured pace, this one is slightly enlivened by more likable perfs and a trim 98-minute running time...
Derek Elley, Variety, 21 May 2006

...And here's an interesting grace note from Cannes: One of the films generating the biggest buzz at the festival is Climates, by Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan. Despite its title, the film has absolutely nothing to do with global warming or climate change. Rather it's the story of a man's inner change. Festival audiences have been mesmerized by the powerful rendering of his transformation.
Arianna Huffington, Huffington Post, 22 May 2006

If you were after something more economical, measured and adult, there was nothing to equal Climates. Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan daringly casts himself and his wife Ebru Ceylan as an Istanbul couple who split up while on holiday, then meet up again in snowbound Anatolia. Ceylan uses High Definition video, with all its precision and clarity, to get under his characters' skin with an acuity comparable to Ingmar Bergman, but he also creates some of the breathtakingly stark landscape shots that made his Uzak so special. It's a small film, which often counts as a criticism in Cannes, but it's intensely personal, and confirms Ceylan as one of today's real auteurs - one of those film-makers who, as they say here, has a signature.
Jonathan Romney, Independent, 28 May 2006

...In Climates, Ceylan depicts the solitude of a man after breaking up with a younger woman whom he now wants to find and convince to take him back... The characteristic sparse dialogue is here, as are the superb long shots, close-ups and the rare figurative sophistication...
Camillo de Marco, Cineuropa, 21 May 2006

...That's why Cannes welcomes the bonhomie of Almodovar, the quiet modesty of the twice-winning Dardennes brothers, the lucidity of David Cronenberg, or the hopeful earnestness of the youngish filmmakers who might find themselves deservedly rocketed into the pantheon. Among the latter, in this year's competition, I'd tip the extraordinary Turkish filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan, who made the wonderful, contemplative Uzak in 2002. Ceylan is so unassumingly go-it-alone that the reason he was so hard to track down for interviews on Uzak was not standoffishness, but a full schedule: he was working single-handedly as his own sales agent and producer. This year he co-stars with his wife Ebru Ceylan in Climates, a relationship drama that could be the most moving, and most personal film in competition...
The Independent, May 26, 2006

Red Carpet during the premiere of "Climates"

...In years to come, I'll largely remember Climates as the movie that finally completely sold me on digital video: Shot and projected on hi-def, it looks absolutely flat-out stunning, with a level of fine detail that I'd never imagined the medium could possibly provide...
Mike D'Angelo, Nerve, 21 may 2006

Tomorrow night the Palme d'Or and Cannes' other prizes will be handed out. The morning line of speculation from the critics had Pedro Almodóvar's Volver and Alejandro González Iñárritu's Babel holding as the frontrunners, with Nuri Bilge Ceylan's Climates as an honorable compromise candidate. But we know nothing...
Richard Corliss, Time, 27 May 2006

...Irruption, aussi, parce que côtoyant en sélection officielle des films américains rivalisant de mauvais goût et d'esbroufe inesthétique, Les Climats apparaît comme un rappel de ce que peut être le vrai cinéma d'auteur, de ce que signifient un regard, un cadrage, une mise en scène et une respiration...
Jean-Luc Douin, Le Monde, 23 May 2006

Deux autres films ont occupé un week end bien chargé, qui tous deux démontrent qu'à Cannes, au festival, bien davantage que les vedettes sur tapis rouge, c'est la singularité d'un regard et d'un univers qui compte et marque. "Les Climats" du cinéaste turc Nuri Bilge Ceylan, et "Les Lumières du faubourg" du finlandais Aki Kaurismäki. La splendeur froide et pourtant toute de braise du premier, l'éclat frontal, métallique, hiératique, du second, forment des mondes que l'on reconnaît au premier coup d'œil, où évoluent des personnages simples et monolithiques au premier abord, mais en définitive totalement nuancés et complexes, car d'une opacité qui relance sans cesse les interprétations. Je crois qu'il s'agit là de la qualité principale de ces deux films: leur forme même, qui laisse a priori le spectateur à l'extérieur, contemplant deux objets paraissant clos et autosuffisants, a de fait un besoin vital de la participation du "contemplant". Qui entre dans le film, comme sous hypnose, pour dialoguer avec les personnages plus intimement, et comme "finir" le film. C'est pour cela que Ceylan et Kaurismäki sont de grands artistes: ils pourraient faire et vivre leurs films dans leur coin, mais ils n'existent en réalité qu'à travers la rencontre avec un public, certes modeste, mais dont chaque fragment se transforme, sous l'effet de la vision et de l'interprétatio du film, en un individu. Ces deux films, qu'on pourrait croire froids et fermés, clos dans leur parabole, sont au contraire de parfaits révélateurs d'humanité...
Antoine De Baecque, Liberation, 22 May 2006

Un film qui cumule les atmosphères... Les jeux de l’amour et du hasard sont ici maîtrisés avec séduction...
Dominique Widemann, l'Humanité, 22 May 2006

Difficile de parler du nouveau film de Nuri Bilge Ceylan ‘Ilklimer’ - ‘Les Climats’ en français - tant le thème abordé est intensément universel mais abordé ici d’un point de vue totalement intimiste. Pour évoquer l’étiolement d’un couple, Ceylan s’est mis en scène avec sa propre femme Ebru Ceylan. Du bel ouvrage que ces ‘Climats’ qui sont autant d’émotions et de sentiments différents qui traversent nos existences sans que l’on en soit totalement maître. Dans la chaleur de l’été, il y a ce couple qui se dénoue faute de ne pouvoir encore partager, communiquer. Dans la rigueur de l’hiver, il y a ce couple qui se retrouve sans pouvoir renaître de ses cendres. Isa et Bahar se séparent et laissent passer le temps ou peut-être le subissent-ils. Le scénario minimaliste est transcendé par une caméra quasi fixe qui donne au film des allures de photographie. Nuri Bilge Ceylan filme en plans serrés et en silence deux visages égarés, impuissants. Car les mots sont rares et se posent par touche dans ce film. Juste ce qu’il faut pour pénétrer dans l’univers de ces personnages perdus dans une impasse existentielle et émotionnelle. Juste ce qu’il faut pour partager un profond malaise. Oppressant et lancinant, ce long métrage, gorgé d’humanité, de sincérité et de réalisme, pèse sur le spectateur, témoin d’une fracture et de la mort de l’amour. Epuré, contemplatif et aphone, il laisse une empreinte inaltérable, celle d’une image minérale et brillante qui donne tout son sens à cette deuxième sélection du réalisateur turc au Festival de Cannes.
Mélanie Carpentier, Evene, 26 May 2006

... On est fasciné à nouveau par le talent de Ceylan: la pertinence avec laquelle il compose ses images, la précision millimétrique avec laquelle il poste sa caméra, la subtilité avec laquelle il évoque les états d'âmes de ses personnages, et sa faculté d'intégrer les saisons, la nature, et ses jeux de lumières comme de véritables protagonistes. Par exemple, au moment de la rupture, lorsque les rayons du soleil déjà couché irradient la couronne de feuilles d'un arbre lointain. Plus tard encore, lorsque Isa traverse l' Anatolie orientale à la recherche de son amour perdu et que la neige tombe en si grande quantité qu'elle en étouffe la douleur que lui cause son incapacité à exprimer ses sentiments. La nature indifférente apparaît comme la seule consolation face à l'incapacité des hommes à être heureux...
Martin Rosefeldt, ARTE, May 2006

...Et justement, on a le souffle coupé devant la façon dont Ceylan filme la femme qu'il aime. Sous le soleil de Fas, il capte la sueur sur son décolleté, la vivacité de son regard, sa silhouette callypige s'enfonçant dans la mer. Dans les neiges de la montagne turque (le film parle des "climats" du coeur qui épousent ceux des différentes régions du pays), il s'attarde sur une mèche de cheveux auburn ou sur quelques flocons qui glissent sur son visage. En une succession de plans fixes, il compose un splendide portrait de celle qui partage sa vie. Bahar/ Ebru pleure, s'esclaffe, s'enferme dans le silence, fume une cigarette, bronze au soleil. La caméra devient vecteur de l'amour...
Joséphine Lebard, Muze, 21 May 2006

A Photo Session for a magazine

... Vraiment remarquable : Les Climats du Turc Nuri Bilge Ceylan, à qui on devait déjà Uzak (Lointain), primé ici il y a trois ans. Le cinéaste conserve sa manière : de très longs plans-séquences, souvent fixes, sur des trajectoires d'incommunication, mais sa quête esthétique est poussée plus loin cette fois. Il s'est donné la vedette aux côtés de son épouse (tous deux très charnels, très magnétiques), dans l'histoire d'un couple qui se désagrège, entre Istanbul, un port de mer et une ville neigeuse du nord. Certains plans et certains paysages sont d'une beauté à couper le souffle, et le non-dit, le suggéré chez ces deux êtres en rupture est d'une finesse évocatrice qui éblouit...
Odile Tremblay, Le Devoir, 23 May 2006

...A la fois autoportrait en parfait connard, autoanalyse du sexe «fort» en mol obsédé de la domination et autobiographie de l'artiste en délaissé contemplatif, le film assume son indécision, sa part d'apesanteur morale et de démeublement narratif. La projection cannoise fut splendide grâce à un projecteur numérique haute définition en conformité avec les caméras utilisées par Ceylan. L'image, brillante, minérale, avec une profondeur de champ sidérante, est un tombeau offert à l'amour mort.
Didier PERON, Liberation, 22 May 2006

...Mais, quitte à retenir un événement de ce premier week-end du Festival, il faut s'arrêter sur la projection d' Iklimler (Climats), du cinéaste turc Nuri Bilge Ceylan... Jusqu'au dernier moment, le réalisateur a refusé de montrer son film à d'autres que les sélectionneurs cannois. Il est venu à Paris "avec un disque dur", expliquait Thierry Frémaux, et est reparti terminer son travail... Car Iklimler a été tourné en Turquie et projeté à Cannes avec des appareils numériques. Ce n'est pas une première pour le Festival, puisque ce fut déjà le cas de La Revanche des Sith, de George Lucas, en 2005. Ce qui est inédit, en revanche, c'est l'utilisation de ce nouveau medium par un artiste de premier ordre, qui tire tous les partis possibles de l'impitoyable précision de l'image numérique, de sa profondeur de champ. En voyant Iklimler, on a eu pendant 97 minutes une image très précise, très séduisante, de ce que pourrait être l'une des nouvelles formes du cinéma.
Thomas Sotinel, Le Monde, 23 May 2006

... "L'homme est fait pour être heureux pour de simples raisons, et malheureux pour des raisons encore plus simples", dit le réalisateur, quiinterprète le rôle principal aux côtés de son épouse, Ebru Ceylan.Celle-ci mériterait le Prix d'interprétation féminine ne serait-ce que pour l'une des premières scènes du film, un plan-séquence de plus d'uneminute où l'on voit son visage, en gros plan, sous la lumière rasante du soleil de fin de journée, passer imperceptiblement du sourire auxlarmes coulant doucement sur ses joues. Un pur et rare moment de cinéma...
Le Soir (Belgium), 22 May 2006

... S'il y avait un prix à Cannes pour la rigueur plastique, Les Climats l'emporterait. Uzak - primé à Cannes l'année des Invasions barbares - avait déjà affiché la manière exigeante de Nuri Bilge Ceylan : longs plans fixes, compositions recherchées, jeu et dialogues minimalistes. Il pousse encore davantage vers l'épuration avec cette histoire d'un «couple qui voudrait repartir à zéro mais qui n'y arrive pas», comme il le dit. Interprété par le cinéaste et son épouse, le couple passe de l'orage de la rupture à la sécheresse de la solitude, jusqu'à la tentative de retrouvailles, qui révèle bien vite à l'homme que rien ne peut recommencer, car rien n'a changé. Il y a dans ces «scènes de la vie conjugale» des images, des paysages et une scène d'amour d'une drôlerie insolite qui forcent à la révérence. Ce fut, aussi, la plus belle projection numérique jamais vue à vie...
Gilles Carignan, Le Soleil, 23 May 2006

... La plus impressionnante cette année, de ce point de vue, est la longue scène de baston-sexe au cœur de «Les climats», le film turc de Nuri Bilge Ceylan, en compétition. On y voit un macho y simuler un viol dont on ne sait trop s'il est «consenti» ou pas, jusqu'au moment où il place de force une noisette dans la bouche de sa partenaire et l'oblige à la croquer, le tout à même le sol, et où elle éclate de rire brusquement. Dans cette scène à la fois très inquiétante et finalement plutôt drôle, il y a une invention cinématographique qui est donc aussi sexuelle, et c'est ce genre de jeu qui bien sûr renouvelle la vision que l'on peut avoir du sexe au cinéma aujourd'hui.
Antoine de Baecque, Libération, 27 May 2006

... Pour servir son récit, le cinéaste a choisi l’image numérique et obtient un rendu d’une beauté et d’un relief stupéfiant. Jouant de très gros plans (des macros rendues possibles par ce format spécifique) et usant habilement du flou en second plan, Nuri Bilge Ceylan capte de manière totalement inédite et spectaculaire la matière organique et les éléments naturels soumis aux déclinaisons de différents climats. Le prodige de ces tableaux vivants successifs composés dans un cadre toujours strict, soumet l’œil du spectateur à une vision nouvelle du monde fait de détails fixes ou en mouvement : les grains de sables d’une plage bordant au loin la mer filante, les pores de la peau du visage d’Isa, la longue chevelure de Bahar, des gouttes de sueur irradiées de soleil sur son front ou encore un ballet de flocons de neige qui l’isole dans les scènes finales. Nuri Bilge Ceylan utilise ainsi tel un pionnier, le champ lexical de sa caméra haute définition qui lui ouvre des contrées visuelles vierges que seuls, à un bien moindre niveau, Georges Lucas ou Alexandr Sokurov avait goûté. Dans cette exploration, Ceylan recrée notamment un des plans à l’identique de son précédent film en 35mm Uzak, un paysage de ville sous un ciel tumultueux qui transcrit toujours de manière splendide la solitude de l’homme mais aussi ici, apparaît comme moyen objectif de comparer les différent supports. Parce que le récit est en tant que tel d’une exceptionnelle humanité et qu’il est porté par ce formalisme saisissant, « Iklimer » demeure l’un des événements cinématographiques les plus bouleversants de ce festival de Cannes.
Olivier Bombarda, ARTE, May 2006

... Beaucoup plus intéressant, l'autre film de la Compétition, LES CLIMATS, du Turc Nuri Bilge Ceylan, qui s'inscrit dans une thématique majeure de ce début de festival, les voies mystérieuses du désir et du plaisir féminin, et l'impossibilité pour les hommes d'en capter les manifestations extérieures... Mais s’il faut donner un palmarès (très personnel, pas un pronostic) dans l'état actuel de la compétition :
Palme d'Or : LES CLIMATS de Nuri Bilge Ceylan,
Grand Prix du Jury : EN AVANT, JEUNESSE ! de Pedro Costa,
Prix de la Mise en Scène : Lucas Belvaux pour LA RAISON DU PLUS FAIBLE,
Prix d'Interprétation Féminine : Lei Hao pour SUMMER PALACE de Lou Ye,
Prix d'Interprétation Masculine : Silvio Orlando pour LE CAÏMAN de Nanni Moretti,
Prix du Scénario : VOLVER de Pedro Almodovar
Antoine Guillot, Radio France, 26 may 2006

Press Conference


- Press after the festival -

...Climates -- which the more I think and talk about it may be my favorite of the fest... Bowing to our hierarchical society -- that is, because everyone loves a list -- here is a rundown of my Cannes viewing, ranked best to worst. Of course, on second-watching, I'm sure many of these films will rise and fall with whims and moods, the middle-section is a little arbitrary, and as always, rankings reflect political leanings and underdog favoritism. But this is a relatively accurate estimation of my preferences:
1. Climates (Turkey), 2. Volver (Spain), 3. Red Road (UK), 4. Summer of '04 (Germany), 5. The Wind That Shakes the Barley (UK), 6. Summer Palace (China), 7. Ten Canoes (Australia), 8. Taxidermia (Hungary), 9. Shortbus (U.S.), 10. Babel (U.S.-Mexico-Morocco), 11. Flandres (France), 12. El Violin (Mexico), 13. The Way I Spent the End of the World (Romania), 14. The Wedding Director (Italy), 15. Lights in the Dusk (Finland), 16. Fast Food Nation (U.S.), 17. The Caymen (Italy), 18. URO (Denmark), 19. Selon Charlie (France), 20. Suburban Mayhem (Australia), 21. Southland Tales (U.S.)
Anthony Kaufman, Indiewire, 30 May 2006

...films that attracted strong critical notices were Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Climates, a languid exploration of a relationship that is falling apart. Thin in terms of substance, Climates scores high marks in terms of treatment of a deeply human story...
Saibal Chatterjee, Hindustan Times, 29 May 2006

...Some festival-goers regarded "Climates," from Turkish director-screenwriter-actor Nuri Bilge Ceylan, as inferior to Ceylan's earlier three films. Yet quite apart from being the most beautiful and expressive film I've yet seen shot (and at Cannes, projected) in high-definition digital video, this end-of-the-affair story felt the freshest and most alive of any of the Cannes entries... "Climates" begins with a scene of Ebru Ceylan watching her lover taking photographs of ruins. The man, a professor and a particular species of passive-aggressive romantic, is unaware of the relationship's crumbling state. She watches as he busies himself with his camera. The viewer completes the voyeuristic circle. Even when it's not directly addressing the act and moral implications of watching and being watched, "Climates" casts an unblinking eye at a familiar subject -- the land of the human heart...
Michael Phillips, Tribune, 30 May 2006

...Best of all, however, was Turkish master Nuri Bilge Ceylan's "Climates." Daringly casting himself and his wife in the roles of two failing lovers, Ceylan's follow-up to his award-winning "Uzak" is another achingly crafted paean to lost love and broken promises...
Ali Jaafar, Daily Star, 31 May 2006

...The serious, if selective, attention accorded Climates indicates that Nuri Bilge Ceylan—one of the very few filmmakers to have his strongest work to date in the competition—will be the first Turkish director to begin his ascent toward immortality.
J. Hoberman, The Village Voice (NY), 30 May 2006

...But I must admit I was disappointed that neither the Turkish film, Iklimler (Climates), directed by Nuri Bilge Ceylan, nor the Chinese one, Summer Palace, directed by Lou Ye, both exceptional works, won any of the major Cannes awards...
Al-Ahram Weekly, Samir Farid, 1 June 2006

...Also a standout was Climates, from Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan. This minor-key étude of love, sex and selfishness used minimalist strategies to reveal the shifting emotional allegiances of a college professor, played with gruff appeal by the director.
Richard Corliss, Time, 1 June 2006

....Although it qualified by a backdoor route for countries still outside the Union, the real European capital of culture will be Istanbul, confirming the rise of Turkey from a long cultural sleep. The rise started long before the EU's "city of culture" campaign. In film and music, in particular, Turks have been quietly elbowing themselves a place at the top table. Last month at the Cannes film festival, Nuri Bilge Ceylan confirmed his standing as one of the most interesting directors in the world by winning the critics' prize for the second time in succession, with "Ilklimler" ("Climates").
Fiachra Gibbons, International Herald Tribune, 13 June 2006

...Early on, critics were chattering enthusiastically about "Climates," Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan's deep-toned excursion through the seasons of a romance of a middle-aged college instructor, played by the director, and his mercurial lover (Ebru Ceylan), a TV producer. The enthusiasm is warranted, though there were a few dissenters saying that they were left cold by much more than the wintry tableau where the movie's third act plays out...
Gene Seymour, Newsday (NY), 29 May 2006

...Another front runner for Cannes laurels was Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Climates. As the title hints, Climates is shot in intersecting episodes against the changing seasons of blistering summer, rainy autumn, and frosty winter. Only spring is missing, although Bahar – Turkish for “spring” – just happens to be the name of the female protagonist. The plodding, excruciating tale of a relationship slowly falling apart confirms that Nuri Bilge Ceylan is one of the most thought-provoking directors working in cinema today. An acclaimed master at probing the loneliness of the soul, Ceylan blends powerful imagery with sparse dialogue in this personal tales of a lost chance and a fatal decision. Climates stars Nuri Bilge Ceylan himself as the university professor Isa (Turkish for “Jesus”), his wife Ebru Ceylan as his loving but wounded girlfriend Bahar... Unfortunately, Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Climates was completely overlooked by the international jury at Cannes. But it did receive the FIPRESCI (International Critics) Award. It deserved the Golden Palm.
Ron Holloway, Inter Film, 20 June 2006

Just after the Gala Screening

...Nuri Bilge Ceylan, the fine Turkish filmmaker with a special talent for chronicling male loneliness (his masterful Distant won a prize at Cannes two years ago), returned with Climates, an astute study of a restless middle-aged man who can't commit to his younger girlfriend. (Ceylan himself plays the commitmentphobe and his pretty wife, Ebru Ceylan, stands her ground as the badly treated lover...
Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly , June 2006

Screen's Cannes critics poll:
Ken Loach’s The Wind That Shakes The Barley may have captured the Palme d’Or, but by a notable margin Screen International’s jury of critics voted Pedro Almodovar’s Volver as the best film in Cannes competition.
Volver lead the pack of 20 competition titles with a 3.4 average (out of a maximum 4), followed by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s Babel with 2.9, Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Iklimler with 2.8, Guillermo Del Toro’s Pan’s Labyrinth with 2.75 and Aki Kaurismaki’s Lights In The Dusk with 2.7.
At the bottom of the ratings, Pedro Costa’s Juventude Em Marcha had an average of only .88, a lower score than Richard Kelly’s Southland Tales with 1.1
The Wind That Shakes The Barley averaged a score of 2.4 from our critics. Other festival award-winners scored as follows with the critics: Rachid Bouchareb’s Indigenes (2.5), Andrea Arnold’s Red Road (2.4) and Bruno Dumont’s Flandres (2.1).
The critics poll was comprised of 10 international critics: Michel Ciment from Positif in France, Alberto Crespi from L’Unita in Italy, Bo Green Jensen from Weekendavisen Berlingske in Denmark, Glenn Kenny from Premiere in the US, Tobias Kniebe from Sueddeutsche Zeitung in Germany, Derek Malcolm from the Evening Standard in the UK, David Stratton from ABC TV and The Australian in Australia, Jan Temmerman from De Morgen and VRT-Radio 1 in Belgium, Leonardo Garcia Tsao from La Jornada in Mexico and Screen International’s individual critic for each film.. Critics could rate each film from 0 to 4.
Staff writers of Screen International, 1 June 2006

I saw 34 films at this year's Cannes film festival. "Iklimler" ("Climates") from Turkish writer-director Nuri Bilge Ceylan, and first-time English feature filmmaker Andrea Arnold's "Red Road" were the two transcending all the rest, working on small but haunting storytelling canvases...
Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune, June 2006

... another favourite, Nuri Bilge Ceylan's Climates (Iklimler). Ceylan had won the Grand Prix in 2003 with Uzak and here has steeled himself to act for the first time, persuading his young wife Ebru to join him. Since this is a deeply melancholy portrait of a self-obsessed middle-aged photographer (Ceylan's original trade) who breaks up with his lover only to re-woo her, there's a temptation to see it as autobiography. But Ceylan makes his lover pretty unsympathetic, and Ebru shows that she expects casual cruelty from him in a breathtaking nightmare scene when she falls asleep on the beach. Ceylan's skill with composition, mood and dark humour has never been better and his use of Hi-Def is exhilirating...
Nick James, Sight&Sound, July 2006

Ceylan fait tanguer le couple: Pour certains, c'était la Palme évidente du festival de cannes. Le seul film dont chaque plan, comme lancé au visage du spectateur, l'atteignait au plus profond de son être... Variation sur le couple (et le machisme), Les Climats, du Turk Nuri évoque Antonioni (désamour, incommunicabilité, etc) mais un Antonioni sale gosse, qui aurait l'art de la micro-péripétie bouleversante, et plasticien. Magique.
Telerama, July 2006

... Plusieurs films se sont approchés de cette hyper-lucidité. Bug, mais aussi Les Climats, dont le héros n’est monstrueux qu’à la mesure de l’extrême acuité sentimentale et visuelle du film. Rien n’est oublié dans cette image HD qui a pu profiter à Cannes d’une très belle projection numérique : pierre impeccablement nette, têtes dont on pourrait compter les cheveux, noisette jetée sur le parquet. Politiquement, ce n’est peut-être pas un programme, mais c’est au moins la marque d’une haute résolution...
Antoine Thirion, Cahiers du Cinema, June 2006

... Les Climats de Nuri Bilge Ceylan, pour recouper et prolonger nos réflexions quant à l’état actuel de l’image... Rien que deux films contemporains de ce qui nous obsède : les nouvelles conquêtes du numérique.
Emmanuel Burdeau, Cahiers du Cinema, June 2006

...Il y avait même, pour nous, une Palme incontestable : Les Climats, du Turc Nuri Bilge Ceylan. Le film rappelle Uzak (primé en 2004), mais le cinéaste va plus loin encore dans cette autofiction (son épouse et lui ont les rôles principaux) qui décrit la fin d’un couple et ravive ce sujet éternel, la difficulté d’aimer : l’humour y masque un désespoir palpable, et la mise en scène, à la fois simplissime et incroyablement construite, est d’une beauté fulgurante. Tirant le meilleur parti de son tournage en vidéo numérique haute définition, du rendu des couleurs et des détails, Les Climats ouvre la voie à un cinéma de demain, où l’intime n’exclut pas le spectacle et la recherche formelle. Le jury a préféré le choix du classicisme. Il fera mieux l’année prochaine.
Aurélien Ferenczi, Télérama n° 2942, "Palmes académiques", 29 May 2006

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Film Comment - Star Ratings for Cannes 2006 Films



Screen International - Star Ratings for Cannes 2006 Films