Iran’s Asghar Farhadi, will open the festival (May 8) in competition with the Spanish-language psychological thriller Everybody Knows, starring Penélope Cruz, Javier Bardem and Ricardo Darín. His films A Separation and The Salesman have won Oscars.
French director Stéphane Brizé’s new film At War is a social-realist drama about a factory shutdown and factory workers battle to save jobs. He is well-known for his film The Measure of a Man.
Italy’s Mateo Garrone is back with the revenge crime thriller and mob drama Dogman.
The French master Jean-Luc Godard’s The Image Book (Wild Bunch) explores the modern Arab world — nothing but silence nothing but a revolutionary song a story in five chapters like the five fingers of a hand.
Japan’s Ryûsuke Hamaguchi ‘s Netemo Sametemo (Asako I & II), is a romance drama adapted from a novel by Tomoka Shibasaki.
Christophe Honoré’ s Sorry Angel is about the relationship between a cynical writer and an optimistic student.
France’s Eva Husson’s new film Girls of the Sun, starring French-Iranian actress Golshifteh Farahani as a Kurdish fighter tells the story of a woman who escaped the captivity of extremists and took up arms to reclaim her village.
China’s Jia Zhangke film Ash Is Purest White (mK2Films) is a story of love, betrayal and loyalty set in China’s underworld. Qiao is in love with Bin, a local mobster. During a fight between rival gangs, she fires a gun to protect him. Qiao gets five years in prison for this act of loyalty. Upon her release, she goes looking for Bin to pick up where they left off.
Japan’s Hirokazu Kore-eda film with Shoplifters synopsis reads like this:: “After one of their shoplifting sessions, Osamu and his son come across a little girl in the freezing cold. At first reluctant to shelter the girl, Osamu’s wife agrees to take care of her after learning of the hardships she faces. Although the family is poor, barely making enough money to survive through petty crime, they seem to live happily together until an unforeseen incident reveals hidden secrets, testing the bonds that unite them…”
Lebanon’s actor-director Nadine Labaki film Capernaum is a political fable set in the Middle East, which explores the daily lives of migrants in Beirut.
South Korea’s Lee Chang-dong will compete at Cannes with his film Burning. It is based on Japanese writer Haruki Murakami’s short story Barn Burning.
Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman, (Focus Feature release in USA), stars John David Washington — an African American police officer in Colorado Springs, Colo., who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan in 1979. Lee’s last film to compete at Cannes was Jungle Fever in 1991.
David Robert Mitchell’s Under the Silver Lake, (an A24 release) is a neo-noir black comedy.
Iran’s Jafar Panahi competition film Three Faces, tells the stories of three Iranian actresses — one pre-revolutionary veteran who has now retired, one current star and one acting student.
Poland’s Pawel Pawlikowski’s Cold War is a romance set across Europe in the 1950s, will be distributed by Amazon Studios. He won the foreign-language film Oscar for Ida (2014).
Italian filmmaker Alice Rohrwacher’s Lazzaro Felice is a rural time-travel story.
Russia’s Kirill Serebrennikov film Leto is about the life of Soviet rock star Viktor Tsoi and the Leningrad rock underground of the 1980s
Egypt’s A.B. Shawky debut feature Yomeddine is a a road-trip comedy about two outcasts who leave behind the leper colony where they’ve spent their entire lives.