As In Fabric transitions from one plot to the next, it is as if the film itself is nodding off, in order to reach a conclusion a conscious mind could never have found. The effect is wholly and deliberately bewildering, both in the moment and for days and nights afterwards.
There’s a gleeful toxicity here that will launch a thousand think-pieces – Pitt’s character is capital-P problematic, absolutely by design – but the transgressive thrill is undeniable, and the artistry mesmerisingly assured.
An alternative title for this one might have been Avengers: Encore, since the film knows its entire audience has been here for the long run – even beside Infinity War, Endgame would be completely impenetrable to a novice. Think of it as a kind of victory lap, in which a decade-plus of painstaking team assembly is re-run at top speed, then paid off with thermonuclear dazzle and force.
Even in the realm of scrappy British underdog comedy, there is a clear line between endearingly ramshackle and downright slipshod. Fisherman’s Friends blithely crosses it, never to return, from the moment it chugs out of port.
Though the film resists easy categorisation, it often tumbles along like queer screwball, which chimes with its original French title: Plaire, Aimer et Courir Vite, or Give Pleasure, Love and Run Fast. It’s a fine manifesto, and Honoré’s film excels at all three.
Farhadi’s screenplay does an artful job of keeping vital fragments of each of its characters secret until the very end. But the climate of over-determined melodrama is rather less involving: characters synopsise their grievances so often, and so thoroughly, that many pivotal scenes have the corny texture of a “previously, on last week’s show” clip reel.
Rush hurls himself into the film’s star turn with a cantankerous abandon that more than compensates for his slightly unsteady accent. It’s a wildly entertaining performance that feels vividly inhabited both physically and vocally.
From the Land of the Moon is a story about how good it feels to feel very, very bad – and how a life lived in rapturous misery is somehow more valuable than mild domestic contentment. That might ring truer if Garcia wasn’t working in such a starchy register.
Amalric transcends mere dishevelment here: in some scenes which flash back to the start of his relationship with Sylvia, the former Bond villain looks like a pile of leaves with a coat thrown on top. [Cannes Version]
Yamada makes a point of contrasting the agonising complexity of high-school life with the clean simplicity of the moments that really count: hushed conversations on a bridge in springtime, a shared roller-coaster ride under empty blue skies.