Left: Oliver Stone, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, 2010, color film in 35 mm, 136 minutes. Right: Hideo Nakata, Chatroom, 2010, color film in 35 mm, 97 minutes.


MONEY NEVER SLEEPS, according to the subtitle of Oliver Stone’s Wall Street sequel, screening Out of Competition this morning—and neither do festival-goers. The party last night on the Plage Vegaluna for Mathieu Amalric’s burlesque celebration Tournée featured Serge Bozon, the director of La France, spinning from his collection of 1960s 45s. As the film’s stars Mimi Le Meaux, Dirty Martini, and Julie Atlas Muz shimmied and batted mile-long eyelashes to “Double-O-Soul” and “Love Potion Number Nine,” others performed interpretive, twenty-first-century versions of the frug and the monkey. At 2:30 in the morning, Bozon apologized: “The party should last longer, but we can’t because of the police.”

Those who skimp on slumber can always catch up . . . during the screenings. At least one gentleman to my left was in deep REM sleep during Cristi Puiu’s Un Certain Regard entry Aurora, which unspooled at 11 AM. The Romanian director, whose last film, The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, won the UCR Award in 2005, sheepishly warned the audience beforehand, “It’s a long film—I’m sorry for that.” During Aurora’s 181 minutes, Puiu plays a man distressed for opaque reasons, all of which are explained in the final reel. If the endurance required for the mordantly jokey payoff seems excessive, Aurora is, at the very least, a movie with both challenging ideas and a challenging structure.

The same cannot be said of the UCR title that directly followed Puiu’s movie, Hideo Nakata’s Chatroom, written by Enda Walsh (who also coscripted Steve McQueen’s Hunger, the winner of the 2008 Caméra d’Or prize for best first film), adapting his stage play of the same name. A quintet of London adolescents, led by a charismatic, unmedicated sociopath named William (Aaron Johnson, twerpy star of Kick-Ass and the upcoming Nowhere Boy), become connected through Chelsea Teens!, a virtual space rendered as a supersaturated “real” meeting room at the end of a grotty corridor. Lessons learned: Too much time on the Internet is dangerous! Don’t get attached to your iPhone! Young people have big emotions! Suicide is not painless! “Now” is the last word of Nakata’s film, earnestly circulating pseudosociology that’s about as current as a dial-up modem.

Melissa Anderson