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Gaspar Noe’s ‘Climax’ wins top prize in Directors’ Fortnight section at Cannes

Dancers descend into madness after they drink LSD-laced sangria in the French provocateur’s latest movie.

Gaspar Noe’s Climax won the Cicae Art Cinema Award, the top honour at Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, reports said. Climax narrates the story of a group of dancers who descend into madness after they drink LSD-laced sangria at a celebration. It features Atomic Blonde and The Mummy actor Sofia Boutella in the lead. Climax was premiered at Cannes on May 12 to warm reviews.

This is the French provocateur’s third film to be screened at the festival after Irreversible (2002) and Love (2015). Irreversible had divided critics with its graphic depictions of rape and violence, while Love met with the same reaction owing to sexually explicit scenes. Love was screened out of competition in a midnight slot.

“I’m so used to bad reviews,” Noe told Vulture in an interview. “I really enjoy them when they’re very mean! I’ve always wanted to make a poster out of my bad reviews and frame it.”


An independent section held parallel to the main competition screenings at Cannes, the Directors’ Fortnight showcases shorts and feature films and documentaries from all over the world. Though the section is considered out of competition, its sponsors regularly give away four awards.

Other Directors’ Fortnight honours include the SACD prize, which went to Pierre Salvadori’s romatic comedy The Trouble With You. The film revolves around a young widowed police detective who finds out that her husband was crooked and gets into several mishaps while trying to right her husband’s wrongs.

Gianni Zanasi’s Lucia’s Grace won the Europa Cinemas Label award, while Patrick Bresnan and Ivete Lucas’s Skip Day won the illy Short Film prize. Lucia’s Grace narrates the story of a single mother trying to find a balance between life with her teenage daughter, a complicated romance and her career as a land surveyor.

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