‘4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days’ deserves its Palme d’Or

By Ray Bennett

CANNES — Romanian director Cristian Mungiu’s “4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days” won the Palme d’Or at the 60th Festival de Cannes tonight and for once the jury has made a terrific choice.

The film tells a harrowing story of the grim lengths to which two young women will go to end an unwelcome pregnancy in the last years of communism in Romania. It’s a dark and gloomy film without music, but it is also observant and highly suspenseful.

The movie features an outstanding performance by Anamaria Marinca, who won the BAFTA TV award as best actress for the miniseries “Sex Traffic” in 2004.

Other richly deserved awards went to American director Julian Schnabel as best director for his French-language film “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” while German director Fatih Akin won the screenplay away for “The Edge of Heaven,” which he also directed.

“Control” won the top prize in the Directors Fortnight sidebar and “The Band’s Visit” won a special prize for winning the hearts of the Un Certain Regard jury.

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