Grace of Monaco ‘welcomed’ with criticism and sarcasm at Cannes Film Festival


Early reviews of Grace of Monaco, the Grace Kelly biopic chosen to open this year’s Cannes Film Festival, have slammed the film, with one describing it as “a timeless camp classic”,  www.bbc.co.uk informs. Laughter was heard during a press screening on Wednesday morning. A gala premiere took place in the evening.
Set in the 1960s, Olivier Dahan’s film focuses on Grace Kelly’s early years as a princess when she was tempted to return to Hollywood by an offer from Alfred Hitchcock.
Tim Roth plays her husband, Prince Rainier III, with Robert Lindsay, Spain’s Paz Vega and Sir Derek Jacobi filling other roles.
In her review, Screen Daily’s Fionnuala Halligan described the film as “puzzlingly misjudged… a minor royal Euro-pudding which lands awkwardly in sub-Roman Holiday territory”.”As Grace Kelly, the retired Hollywood movie star struggling to find meaning in her life as Monaco’s monarch, Kidman valiantly strains for the right notes. “But the project… seems a poor judgment call, despite the presence of La Vie en Rose’s Dahan at the helm.”
Those sentiments were echoed by the Hollywood Reporter’s Stephen Dalton, who called the film “a stiff, stagey, thuddingly earnest affair which has generated far more drama off screen than on”. “Is it even possible to make a boring film out of this rich, juicy, gossipy material? It would seem so,” he said.
The film has been criticised by the royal family of Monaco, with Princess Stephanie of Monaco calling the film about her parents inaccurate.
At a press conference for the film on Wednesday, Kidman addressed the royal family’s displeasure at the project. “Obviously I feel sad because the film has no malice towards the family, particularly Grace and Rainier,” she told reporters. “If they did see the film, they’d see there was an enormous amount of affection for both their parents.”
Grace of Monaco is playing out of competition at this year’s festival, though she joked she would give it the Palme d’Or – Cannes’ highest accolade – were she still to have a say in the matter.
According to reports, the director Dahan admitted some scenes depicted in the film did not occur in real life, among them a visit to Monaco by Alfred Hitchcock. “I twisted reality a little bit,” he conceded. “I’m not a biographer or a historian. What I’ve tried to do is depict the heart of things.” According to the film, Kelly was sorely tempted to return to Hollywood but ultimately chose to do her duty and remain with her husband.
There are 18 films in competition for the top prize, the Palme d’Or, which will be handed out along with other prizes on 24 May. British hopes for the prize are led by directors Ken Loach and Mike Leigh.  Leigh’s Mr Turner stars his regular collaborator Timothy Spall as the artist JMW Turner, while Loach’s Jimmy’s Hall dramatises the deportation of a 1930s Irish activist. David Cronenberg, Tommy Lee Jones, The Artist director Michel Hazanavicius and 83-year-old Jean-Luc Godard are also among those in contention.This year’s Un Certain Regard section of the competition will feature the directorial debut of Hollywood star Ryan Gosling. This year’s line-up features two appearances from Robert Pattinson, who plays the lead role in Cronenberg’s Hollywood satire Maps to the Stars.

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