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Netflix’s second film in the Cannes Film Festival lineup — Noah Baumbach’s The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) — received an enthusiastic standing ovation on Sunday night following its Palais premiere, clocking in at four minutes.
The reception was an emotional experience for the film’s stars as Dustin Hoffman, Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller and Emma Thompson all had tears in their eyes after the screening. So did Greta Getwig, Baumbach’s girlfriend, and Hoffman’s wife Lisa.
The dramedy, about a fractious clan of New York intellectuals, stars Hoffman as an emotionally withholding pater familias, a sculptor who’s never quite achieved the success he feels he deserves. Thompson plays his latest wife and Sandler and Stiller play his two sons, who are half-brothers and rivals. They reunite when the patriarch is hospitalized.
Just like the screening of the lineup’s first Netflix film, when the streaming giant’s logo appeared onscreen, the audience cheered and showed love despite controversy earlier in the fest.
Prior to the screening, Sandler broke unofficial Cannes protocol with the most gentlemanly of motives. After climbing the steps with the whole cast and Netflix chief Ted Sarandos, Sandler was to enter the theater with the Meyerowitz family until he noticed his wife, Jackie, was still at the bottom of the steps. He chivalrously ran back down to escort her up to the theater entrance, even stopping to pose for photographer once again.
Stiller brought the comedy: As he was entering the theater, he flashed his movie ticket to the camera (which streams a live feed on the big screen) showing he had a seat. The crowed ate it up with big laughs and he gave it a thumbs-up.
After the premiere, Sarandos and the cast headed to the Netflix villa for the company’s first-ever festival bash.
Meyerowitz Stories had screened for the press earlier in the day, where it met with generally appreciative reviews, with many offering special praise for Sandler taking on a serious acting role.
Meyerowitz Stories is one of the two films in the competition — the other being Bong Joon-ho’s Okja — that Netflix has brought to Cannes, stirring up controversy, with the fest promising not to screen any films next year that aren’t guaranteed a theatrical release.
— Chris Gardner (@chrissgardner) May 21, 2017
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