After a tantalizing Cannes Film Festival, that saw some of Hollywood‘s, and the world’s, biggest movie stars head to the French Riviera to promote their latest films, it was British drama I, Daniel Blake that took home the prestigious Palme d’Or award.
Directed by seasoned visionary Ken Loach, the independent drama is centered around Daniel Blake, a 59-year-old joiner in the North-East of England who falls ill and requires state assistance for disability from the Employment and Support Allowance. While he endeavours to overcome the red tape involved in getting this assistance, he meets single mother Katie who, in order to escape a homeless persons’ hostel, must take up residence in a flat 300 miles (480 km) away.
The recent win for Loach marks the second time the director has won the top prize at Cannes, having won the Palme d’Or back in 2006 for the critically acclaimed war-drama The Wind that Shakes the Barley.
Having been presented with the Palme d’Or award by Oscar-winning director Mel Gibson, Loach was noticeably overjoyed for his film I, Daniel Blake, that aims to shed light on the ever-growing issue of inequality and unemployment in Britain and Europe.
Speaking during the film’s press junket, Loach was forthcoming in expressing his views and concerns on the films story;
It’s certainly a great win for British cinema and one that proves Cannes unique ability in bringing relatively unknown independent cinematic gems to the forefront of an industry that seems swamped with big-budget blockbusters.
Among the other victors this year, was the coming-of-age road movie American Honey, which picked up the other big accolade of the festival, the Prix du Jury award – the film, which stars Shia LeBeouf, follows the exploits of a teenage girl who joins a travelling magazine sales crew as they travel across the US Midwest.
Stay tuned for the official trailers for I, Daniel Blake and American Honey.