Which titles from Cannes will contend for Oscar glory this year?

With the 2017 Cannes Film Festival now firmly in our rearview mirror, some analysis of what the fest gave us can now be done. Specifically, did any Oscar players emerge from the south of France? Cannes tends to not be the festival to look at if you’re hoping to establish any trends in the still to come precursor season, but it’s also not completely worth dismissing. That sort of puts it in no man’s land, so to speak. Still, it’s worthwhile to take a look at if anything Academy Award centric opened up there. Cannes gives an air of prestige to everything it touches, so there’s that to factor in as well.

Historically, it is somewhat rare for any Best Picture winners to emerge out of Cannes. It can happen on occasion, like with No Country for Old Men, but realistically, that’s not its strength. Nominees, sure? Though still, they tend to be players elsewhere too, like with Amour recently. In fact, some of the films that end up nominated in the big category end up debuting at the Sundance Film Festival first and then hit Cannes after to lend extra legitimacy to itself. Beasts of the Southern Wild is an example of that as well. Just keep all of that in mind as we discuss this year’s crop and how they might do.

What you’ll see below are 12 flicks that the Academy might end up taking a shine to.

Here now are a dozen titles out of Cannes that could contend for some Oscar attention:

The Beguiled
BPM: Beats Per Minute
The Florida Project
Good Times
Happy End
The Meyerowitz Stories: New and Selected
Patti Cake$
The Square
Wind River
You Were Never Really Here

Of those 12, some are bigger contenders than others. Oscar might end up snubbing them all, but at least one or two have some potential. That’s just the nature of the beast here. Much like with any festival, buzz will die down and some will separate from the rest of the pack. The difference here is that critics at the fest and the awards given out by the jury don’t usually match up, so it can be hard to sometimes separate the true contenders from the pretenders when all is said and done. That’s what I’m here for though, so fear not!

The main ones to look for this year seem to be BPM: Beats Per Minute (in Best Foreign Language Feature), The Florida Project (perhaps this year’s little indie that could?), Loveless (also in Foreign Language Feature), Wind River (Taylor Sheridan is establishing himself as an A-list cinematic voice), and Wonderstruck (across the board possibilities). None of them have any guarantees, though the foreign contenders do start with a bit of a leg up. I’ll also throw in The Beguiled since it took home two awards and could maneuver Nicole Kidman towards another citation, as well as You Were Never Really Here, which has an outside shot of getting Joaquin Phoenix into the race.

Ultimately, I have a sneaky suspicion that we might not see much Cannes overlap with the Academy. The initial raves for Wonderstuck, for example, died down quickly, so it was presumptuous to throw it so quickly into the Oscar race. It can still end up doing very well, but more will need to be seen in order to ascertain its strength. My shot in the dark is that, outside of some of the foreign contenders, the one most likely to slip in somewhere major could end up being Wind River. We shall see though. It’s still very early. Sit tight and we’ll find out how it all shapes up over the rest of the year…

Stay tuned to see if any of these movies end up doing well during the awards season!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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