Turkish Drama ‘Winter Sleep’ Wins Palme D’or at Cannes 2014

Winter Sleep‘ by Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan, took the Palme d’Or in the Cannes Film festival closing ceremony this past Saturday night.

The film is a Chekhovian drama about an isolated actor dealing with marital breakdown in the mountains.

Turkish director receives the award, handed out by director Quentin Tarantino and actress Uma Thurman. Proper choice in the year that marked the 100th anniversary of Turkish cinema. “I want to dedicate the prize to all the young people of Turkey, including those who lost their lives over the past year” he said, acknowledging the 2013-14 Gezi Park protests that swept across his home country and led to the deaths of 11 people.

Ceylan thanked the festival’s jury Thierry Fremauxand Gilles Jacob for supporting “such a long film.” The film was the longest in the competition at 3 hours, 16 minutes.

The Grand Prix winner went to the Italian Alice Rohrwatcher’s for ‘Le Meraviglie, an Italian drama about a family of beekeepers. Rohrwatcher was one of two female directors among the 18 films in competition for the Palme d’Or.

Bennett Miller won best director for his drama ‘Foxcatcher, the American film that made the biggest impact at Cannes. Miller dedicated his award to his stars Channing Tatum, Steve Carell and Mark Ruffalo, as well as producer Megan Ellison.

For the cast Timothy Spall wins best actor in Mike Leigh’s biopic of ‘Mr. Turner and Julianne Moore for her part in David Cronenberg‘s acid Hollywood satire ‘Maps of the Stars.

The jury prize was given to two films: ‘Mommy by young Xavier Dolan and ‘Goodbye to Language‘ by veteran Jean-Luc Godard.

Here is the complete list of winners:
Palme d’Or: Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Winter Sleep
Grand Prix: Alice Rohrwacher, Le Meraviglie
Jury Prize: Xavier Dolan, Mommy and Jean-Luc Godard Goodbye to Language
Best Director: Bennett Miller, Foxcatcher
Best Screenplay: Andrey Zvyagintsev and Oleg Negin, Leviathan
Best Actress: Julianne Moore, Maps to the Stars
Best Actor: Timothy Spall,  Mr. Turner
Camera d’Or: Marie Amachoukeli, Claire Burger, Samuel Theis Party Girl

– L. Fietz

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