Int’l critics bestow top honors at Cannes

Selection of 'Tournee' comes as surprise

CANNES Mathieu Amalric’s “Tournee” (On Tour), Agnes Kocsis’ “Pal Adrienn” and Olivier Laxe’s “Todos vos sodes capitans” won awards Saturday at Cannes from the FIPRESCI (Intl. Federation of Film Critics).

FIPRESCI plaudits go to one outstanding film in Cannes Competition, Un Certain Regard and either Directors’ Fortnight or Critics’ Week.

“Tour”‘s kudos came as a surprise: Far better known as one of France’s top actors (“The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” “Quantum of Solace”), “Tour,” Amalric’s fourth directorial feature, ranked second to last through Thursday on Cannes’ main critics poll.

Plaudit was a bet on “the future, new auteurs and masters,” said FIPRESCI jury prexy Alin Tasciyan, announcing the award.

That criteria excludes most directors in Cannes Competition this year who are established name auteurs. “Tour” is sold by Le Pacte.

In a unanimous decision, Tasciyan said, FIPRESCI’s Un Certain Regard award went to the Elle Driver-sold “Pal Adrienn,” by Hungary’s Agnes Kocsis, a downbeat Aki Kaurismaki-ish tale of an obese nurse’s search for her supposed best friend at school.

Chosen by Cannes’ FIPRESCI jury as the best debut in Directors’ Fortnight or Critics’ Week, the Memento Films Intl.-sold “Capitans” departs from the simple premise of a European director trying to make a film about kids in Tangiers to rich results, according to its critical reception at Cannes.

Also announced Saturday, Cannes’ Ecumenical Jury awarded its main Prix predictably to “Des hommes et des Dieux” (Of Gods and Men), Xavier Beauvois’ chronicle of events leading up to the massacre of a group of Trappist monks in the Algerian highlands.

Handled internationally by Wild Bunch, “Men” has been one of the warmest-received of films in Competition this year.

Ecumenical Special Mentions went to Mike Leigh’s “Another Year,” another Competition hit, and “Poetry,” from Korea’s Lee Chang-dong.