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2015 Cannes Critics’ Panel Day 3: Son of Saul Puts Focus on One Individual

It’s a next to nil chance that a first time filmmaker will have the opportunity to walk the red carpet steps of the Main Comp at the Cannes Film Festival. You need to be vetted first, introduced via a sidebar, parallel section before you get to spend time with the cool kids. Of course, there are indeed exceptions to these no-written rules. We saw it in Red Road, Persepolis, Synecdoche, New York, Markus Schleinzer’s Michael and last year’s Wild Tales – (the later two were godfathered by the likes of Palme d’Or mainstays Haneke and Pedro) which is why when a Camera d’Or candidate is included in the mix it’s a surefire telling sign that the film, and filmmaker have indeed earned it their stripes. This can only be further compounded when there is a jubilation in the press core. Post screening talk must have been animated for László Nemes’ Son of Saul. So who is Nemes? For two years, he worked as Béla Tarr’s assistant and his earlier work so far are several shorts filmed in the U.S.

The shared enthusiasm can be found in our critics’ panel grades – the consensus as illustrated by our Nicholas Bell has a lot to do with the representation “of an incomprehensible horror told through the experience of sensory perception“.

Check back with us twice daily for the latest grades and make sure to click on the grid below for a larger version.


Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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