Cannes: Todd McCarthy's 5 Most-Anticipated Festival Films

6:00 AM 5/8/2019

by Todd McCarthy

The Hollywood Reporter's chief film critic reveals what he plans to see on the Croisette, including new projects from Terrence Malick and Quentin Tarantino, as well as movies about bizarre subjects from promising directors.

'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood'
'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood'
Andrew Cooper

  • 'A Hidden Life'

    A three-hour World War II drama from Terrence Malick about a Nazi-era Austrian conscientious objector, it looks to be a real movie and not just a collection of spinning-top visuals like his past three films. The hope is that, at 75, he'll want to weigh in this time with something substantial.

  • 'The Traitor'

    Courtesy of Ad Vitam

    This marks the seventh competition appearance by Marco Bellocchio (Vincere; Good Morning, Night), who's 79. The Italian contrarian's best films are always hard-hitting, and this true story of a Mafia criminal turned informer would seem to offer very ripe material.

  • 'The Whistlers'

    Courtesy of MK2 films

    From the erratic but sometimes inspired Romanian auteur Corneliu Porumboiu (Police, Adjective), this one sounds willfully eccentric, centering on a heist on the tiny Canary island of La Gomera. Perhaps it means something that Cannes has elevated him to the competition.

  • 'The Lighthouse'

    Courtesy of Cannes Film Festival

    A return to the disturbingly fantastical from The Witch auteur Robert Eggers, this black-and-white horror entry set in early 20th century Maine plays in Directors' Fortnight. Stars Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson have said that the set was tense and mostly silent.

  • 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood'

    Andrew Cooper

    With its late addition to the competition, Quentin Tarantino's starry new movie almost automatically becomes the most highly anticipated of this year's fest. The filmmaker has been a god of the Croisette since his 1992 debut with Reservoir Dogs.

    This story first appeared in the May 8 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.