Daniel Blake, 59, has worked as a joiner most of his life in Newcastle. Now, after a heart attack and nearly falling from a scaffold, he needs help from the state for the first time in his life.
He crosses paths with a single mother Katie and her two young children, Daisy and Dylan. Katie’s only chance to escape a one-roomed homeless hostel in London has been to accept a flat in a city she doesn’t know some 300 miles away.
The film is a delicate and moving portrait of two souls immerged in a spiral of difficulties, but always trying to help each other even with the small resources they dispose.
Paul Laverty, the British screenwriter who wrote I, Daniel Blake told Xinhua: “we want to tell the story of a man who worked all his life and who now desperately needs some help”.
Canadian director and screenwriter Xavier Dolan, who served as a jury member of the 68th Cannes Film Festival, won the Grand Prize of this year’s festival with his film Juste La Fin Du Monde (It’s only the end of the world).
The movie tells a story in which a writer goes back, after 12 years of absence, to his hometown, planning on annoucing his upcoming death to his family. As resentment soon rewrites the course of the afternoon, fits and feuds unfold, fuelled by loneliness and doubt, while all attempts of empathy are sabotaged by people’s incapacity to listen and love.
The biggest winner of the 69th Cannes Film Festival is Iranian director and screenwriter Asghar Farhadi for Forushande (The Salesman).
The Iran-France co-production movie tells a story in which Emad and Rana, forced out of their apartment due to dangerous works on a neighboring building, move into a new flat in the center of Tehran. An incident linked to the previous tenant will dramatically change the young couple’s life.
Farhadi won The Best Screenplay Award, and his actor Shahab Hosseini won the Best Actor Award.
As for the Best Actress Award, it was Jaclyn Jose from the Filipino movie Ma’Rosa who touched most of the Jury.
This year, the Jury gave the Best Director Award to two directors, French director Olivier Assayas for Personal Shopper, and Romanian director Cristian Mungiu for Baccalaureat.
British female director Andrea Arnold won her third Jury Prize for her movie American Honey.
The Camera d’Or Award, to award the best first feature film, was given to the French Moroccan director Houda Benyamina.
This year’s jury of the main competition was composed of nine people, headed by Australian film director George Miller.
The other jury members included four females, actress Kirsten Dunst from the United States, producer Katayoon Shahabi from Iran, actress and director Valeria Golino from Italy, and French actress Vanessa Paradis.
At the press conference of the jury after the closing ceremony, Miller said:” it was a wonderful experience, but it was also incredibly rigorous and vigorous. We took longer than most juries”.
“This is the result that I think represents our opinion,” the head of jury stressed.
A total of 21 films, including three Asian films, were selected among the 1,869 films in April to compete for the top prize Palme d’Or of this annual film event.
The Palme d’Or winning film I, Daniel Blake was screened after the ceremony as the closing film of the 69th Cannes Film Festival. Enditem