July 17, 2021 (SIGNIS / INTERFILM). The Ecumenical Jury at Cannes 2021 has awarded its prize to the Japanese film Drive My Car by Ryusuke Hamaguchi and a Special Mention to Hytty nro 6 (Compartment no. 6) by Juho Kuosmanen from Finland.
After being cancelled last year due to the Corona pandemic, the 74th Festival de Cannes opened live and on location on 6 July 2021 with the musical Annette, with Marion Cotillard and Adam Driver in the leading parts. The Jury œcuménique choose their winners from the films in the International Competition with 24 entries.
Drive My Car is an adaptation of an excerpt from Haruki Murakami's collection Men Without Women. Yusuke Kafuku, an actor and theatre director, accepts to stage Uncle Vanya at a festival in Hiroshima. There he meets Misaki, a reserved young woman who has been assigned to him as a driver. As they travel, the growing sincerity of their exchanges forces them to confront their past.
The Jury awarded the film for its poetic rumination on the healing power of art and words through a long journey towards forgiveness and acceptance. This is a film that solidly portrays a universal message of overcoming the communication barriers of convention, class, nationality and disability.
In Hytty nro 6, a young Finnish woman takes a train in Moscow to an archaeological site in the Arctic Sea. She is forced to share her compartment with a stranger. This cohabitation and improbable encounters will gradually bring together these two people who have nothing in common.
The Jury chose the film for its kind view on the encounter between two wounded people who would not choose each other even as neighbor. They both overcome solitude by walking the extra mile with the difficult other.
Hytty nro 6 also received the Grand Prix of the international festival jury chaired by Spike Lee, ex aequo with Ghareman (A Hero) by Asghar Farhadi, while Drive My Car also won the Best Screenplay award. The Palme d'Or went to Titane by Julia Ducournau (France, Belgium 2021), the Best Director prize to Leos Carax for his film Annette.