And we’re done. Looking back, it’s hard to believe it’s only been two weeks. There was no adjustment period — we were thrown into the deep end as soon as we arrived and have been desperately swimming ever since. What other people might do in a few months, we’ve done that (and then some) in just a few weeks.
And yet, at the same time, it feels like no time at all has passed.
Sometime this week, I’ll write a more coherent reflection post about the good the bad and the ugly of the entire experience. Right now I’m still so exhausted and coming down from the frantic rush of adrenaline that has fueled me the past two weeks. I just want to get these memories down from the last four days before I fall asleep and think this was all a dream.
Compared to the first week and a half, these last four days were relatively slow. People start packing up and clearing out as early as Wednesday. The crowds get less frantic-professional-in-suit-yelling-into-phone and more sunburnt-tourist-with-huge-camera-blocking-sidewalks.
Thursday morning, we went to catch a screening of Tale of Tales, which I had really been looking forward, even before the Salma Hayek panel. I’m still not sure how I feel about it. The production design and costumes and makeup were all indescribably beautiful. But the storyline — or rather storylines were pretty heavy. The film falls under a pretty rare section of an already pretty rare genre. It’s dark fantasy but with an added unfamiliarity of the stories and their depressing endings. It’s definitely worth watching and discussing.
Following the screening, Danielle and I went back to the American Pavilion to catch a panel on Dope. It was a huge panel, with the writer/director and six cast members. The chemistry among the cast was unreal. The moderator barely got two words in edgewise and the entire thing was basically like watching a group of very close friends hang out. It was funny and sweet and made me really want to watch the film (unfortunately, I slept through the 9am screening the next day womp).
After the panel, I met up with a publicist that one of the Creative Minds staff had put me in contact with. Now that the internship was over, I wanted to get some perspective on the festival from the PR side. It was so helpful to meet someone right in the thick of things and pick her brain.
We were too exhausted to do anything that night, and for once we were able to follow through with our no-plan plan.
On Friday, Brooke and I decided that one way or another we were getting on the red carpet. There were two premieres that night: The Little Prince and Chronic. The day before, Richie had given me an extra ticket for the Chronic premiere so I was definitely going to at least one. But since I really wanted to see The Little Prince and Brooke hadn’t been on the red carpet yet and I didn’t want to go to one alone cause hello who would take my picture, we decided to once again try our luck and beg for invitations.
And we did it. We settled ourselves down right in front of the exit to the Palais with our cute little signs and not a half hour later, an elderly couple came up to us and with a precious “Voila!” handed us their balcony tickets to the red carpet premiere for The Little Prince.
If you look up success in the dictionary you’ll see a picture of our faces and that’s a fact.
Going to a red carpet premiere was unreal. Going to two in a row was unbelievable. And I am so glad I had a friend for at least one of them. It’s extremely stressful when you realize what a short walk it is up the stairs and into the theater and all the ushers are hurrying you along in rapid French and there’s so many people trying to get pictures and selfies and you’re trying not to trip and fall flat on your face in front of a thousand people and photographers.
Luckily Brooke and I were prepared. We practiced poses before we left and switched phones before stepping on to the carpet and I gotta say, we killed it. Not only did we both get kickass pictures but we even snuck quite a few selfies and videos. The whole thing took less than two minutes. I’m so glad I was able to do a second red carpet immediately after — even though I was alone, I was able to just relax and really enjoy it.
The Little Prince was so beautiful. I’ve been a fan of the story for years and seeing it come to life (or rather, animation) was so moving. Definitely my favorite of all the films I was able to see. Chronic was good too, though a bit slow and kinda sad for a Friday night, especially coming from the emotional happy ending of The Little Prince.
We had been planning a day trip to Monaco for Saturday but sleep won us over again and we all slept right through our alarms. I headed into town a bit earlier to meet with my old boss from my internship in London, whom I had randomly spotted coming out of the Palais the day before. She was in the middle of press junkets all day so I just stopped by for a quick hello but it was great to see her again after two years. I absolutely loved my internship in London. I wish I would have known they would be at the festival — I would have loved to help out with any events or work they had going on.
By the time we all rallied together after lunchtime, it was much too late to attempt a day trip so we decided instead to take a ferry to the Île Sainte-Marguerite, just fifteen minutes away. We spent the afternoon exploring the tiny little island including the tower where the original Man in the Iron Mask was imprisoned!
We headed back in the late afternoon and treated ourselves to some delicious Nutella crepes before calling it a day.
Today was slow. I woke up early to catch the last screening of Son of Saul, which I really enjoyed. I’m so hesitant about Holocaust movies because they’re always so sad but so cliched so you feel bad for feeling bored and I just make a general point to avoid them. But this film was getting such good reviews, I had to check it out. And I’m so glad I did. It was such an refreshingly original storyline and shot with really interesting direction that gave it a whole new dynamic. I don’t think it will get a wide release in the US since it’s a Hungarian film but if you get a chance, I would recommend checking it out.
The rest of the day went by in a haze. It started drizzling in the late afternoon and the sun had completely faded away after emerging only for a couple hours in the morning. Brooke, Katelin, Danielle, and I met up at La Pizza (aka the best pizza in Cannes) for our last dinner.
Best part of the dinner? The waiter giving us a free bottle of wine.
Brooke, Danielle, and I took the bottle, picked up some Nutella crepes (with extra Nutella) and went to the dock by the Plage de Cinema. We sat and ate and drank and took pictures and listened to music and toasted one final hurrah to our Cannes experience.
It was the best way to end the weekend. It’s going to be awful saying goodbye tomorrow morning. Crazy the bonds that have been formed in these short weeks — definitely not ready to leave yet.
But alas, the next adventure awaits. Tomorrow morning I’m flying to Madrid to reunite with my parents and my sister. The following day, we’re heading out to Galicia for the rest of the week to visit my dad’s side of the family. They’re all flying home on June 2nd, but I’ll be traveling around for a few more weeks (itinerary still TBD — such adventure, much anxiety).
One week with family, two weeks of adventure, and then finally returning home.
Let’s do this.