Last year, amid the slow fade of the pandemic, the Cannes Film Festival made its official comeback. But this year it felt like Cannes came back in a different way. For this was one of the most dynamic Cannes slates in years. The festival atmosphere was still laced with jitters, since the film industry — notably the part of it devoted to the kinds of movies that play at Cannes — is in the midst of redefining, restructuring, and maybe even trying to save itself. But the films that Cannes offered could prove to be just the shot in the arm that industry needs. Here, Variety‘s critics pick the most notable dozen.