Cannes 2023: The 14 Best Movies at This Year’s Festival

This year’s Cannes has come to an end, but its ripple effects will be felt across the rest of the year, as the the 2023 edition of the ultra-prestigious festival played host to a deep and extraordinary array of premieres from some of the world’s greatest filmmakers, several of whom were debuting new work for the first time in the better part of a decade (or longer). 

In most cases, the wait proved worth it. “The Zone of Interest” director Jonathan Glazer stunned the Croisette with his much-anticipated follow-up to 2013’s “Under the Skin,” while the likes of Aki Kaurismäki, Catherine Breillat, Tran Anh Hung, and Martin Scorsese — whose epic “Killers of the Flower Moon” only felt like it was forever in the making — all returned with major triumphs that reminded us of their singular brilliance (apologies to Victor Erice, whose rapturously received but inconveniently scheduled “Close Your Eyes” eluded our team on the ground). Even Cannes mainstays like Hirokazu Kore-eda, Wes Anderson, and Palme d’Or-winner Justine Triet seemed to be reinvigorated and compelled to push themselves further out of their comfort zones than ever before, while newcomers like Camera d’Or-winner Thien An Pham (“Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell) and relatively unheralded talents like Anthony Chen (“The Breaking Ice”) unveiled films that could easily stand shoulder-to-shoulder with those from giants of the medium. There may not have been another “Aftersun,” but there’s no use complaining about that in the wake of a festival that gave us the first “Robot Dreams.”

Here are the 14 best films we saw at Cannes 2023.

This article includes contributions from Siddhant Adlakha, Christian Blauvelt, Ben Croll, Sophie Monks Kaufman, Eric Kohn, and Josh Slater-Williams. 

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