Jacques Audiard was the surprise winner of the Palme d’Or, Cannes film festival’s biggest award, at last night’s closing ceremony, as critics saw their favourites sidelined.
The 63 year old French director’s seventh feature, Dheepan, had been met with disappointment from critics but a nod from the Jury ensured it ran away with the top honour.
— Festival de Cannes (@Festival_Cannes) May 24, 2015
The film follows a group of Sri Lankan migrants who pretend to be a family to seek refuge and build a new life in France.
Audiard, who took the Grand Prix (the second highest award) five years ago, for A Prophet, bowed to the Jury and thanked his father, a prominent screen writer who died in 1985, as he accepted his award.
Debut director Laszlo Nemes took the Grand Prix for Son of Saul, the story of life as a Sonderkommando in Auschwitz, while Greek film The Lobster, a satirical look at modern day dating and also the bookies’ favourite, took the Prix du Jury (third prize).
Dheepan’s win surprised many on Twitter, while others praised it…
Dheepan hit me hardest at #Cannes but it left others cold. Partly a question of how and where we identify at the movies.
— Cameron Bailey (@cameron_tiff) May 24, 2015
Some strange choices from the Cannes jury tonight. Was Dheepan really the best film they saw #cannes2015 ? AH
— Glasgow Film Fest (@glasgowfilmfest) May 24, 2015
Congratulations are in order for Jacques Audiard's #Dheepan; this year's Palme d'Or winner. So much to look forward to in the year ahead.
— Picturehouse Cinemas (@picturehouses) May 24, 2015
DHEEPAN: Very ambivalent about the last act, but loved everything else about this refugees in the banlieues movie from Jacques Audiard.
— Alison Willmore (@alisonwillmore) May 21, 2015