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The Imagine programmers are in the South of France for the 2024 edition of the Cannes Film Festival. Here are their experiences on the Croisette.

The Cannes Filmfestival is nearing its end. We still have two full festival days to go and the remaining journalists and professionals are beginning to look a little worse for wear. Thankfully, with most of our meetings and musts behind us, it’s now time to watch, watch, watch.

Let’s start with the bad news. David Cronenbergs personal meditation on grief, The Shrouds, is unfortunately one of his weakest films. A disappointment for all the genrefans in attendance. Ali Abbasi, the man behind Gräns and earlier Imagine favourites Shelley and Holy Spider, is in competition with The Apprentice – a one-note Donald Trump origin story that’s a far cry from his previous Fantastic films. Meanwhile at the Marché du Film, one of the few anime titles we saw was a no for us. A shame, especially given how little anime options there are.

On to the good. Because of course there were plenty of hits as well. The Substance by Coralie Fargeat (Revenge) is being lauded across the board and team Imagine fully agrees. We’ll try our hardest to get it on our festival list come fall. The same goes for Irish director Lorcan Finnegan’s pulpy thriller The Surfer, which sees Nic Cage losing his shit in a wet suit.

Still to come: Korean crime thriller I, The Executioner, or Veteran 2; anime Ghost Cat Anzou; and Bird, Andrea Arnold’s magical realism-infused latest.

Just a few more days!

Chris Oosterom
Directeur van Imagine

Pictured in the header: a group photo of all our attending festival friends from the Meliès Foundation, with whom we organised the Fantastic Pavilion at Cannes 2024.