The winners are in from the illustrious Cannes film festival! Taking home top honors was Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life, in what some are considering a surprising upset. Reclusive filmmaker Terrence Malick's fifth feature film (in almost 40 years) took home the most prestigious honor this year, despite a profoundly mixed critical reaction. The film stars Brad Pitt and Jessica Chastain as the parents of a young boy who compete to influence his world view, and Sean Penn as that boy – all grown up – struggling to make sense of it all. It also has dinosaurs in it. With its Palme d'Or win The Tree of Life joins such impressive company as Taxi Driver, Sex, Lies and Videotape, Pulp Fiction and Farenheit 9/11 in receiving top honors at the Cannes Film Festival.
Other winners include Kirsten Dunst award for Best Actress in Lars von Trier's Melancholia. Dunst apparently dodged a bullet – director von Trier was banned from the film festival followed ill-advised remarks about Hitler, and was lucky that his film wasn't pulled from competition. In a rather unexpected turn of events Nicolas Winding Refn, scheduled to direct the upcoming Logan's Run remake, walked away with Best Director for his Ryan Gosling car chase thriller Drive.
The complete list of winners is below.
Palme d'Or: The Tree of Life (Terrence Malick, U.S.)
Grand Prix (tie): Once Upon a Time in Anatolia (Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Turkey) and The Kid with a Bike (Jean-Luc and Pierre Dardenne, France)
Director: Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive, U.S.)
Jury Prize: Polisse (Maiwenn, France)
Actor: Jean Dujardin (The Artist, France)
Actress: Kirsten Dunst (Melancholia, Denmark-Sweden-France-Germany)
Screenplay: Joseph Cedar (Footnote, Israel)
Camera d'Or: Las acacias (Pablo Giorgelli, Argentina-Spain)
Palme d'Or, Short Films: Cross (Maryna Vroda)
Un Certain Regard: Arirang (Kim Ki-Duk) and Stopped on Track (Andreas Dresen)
Un Certain Regard Director: Mohammad Rasoulof (Au Revoir)
Un Certain Regard Special Jury Prize: Elena (Andrey Zvyagintsev)
Source: The Hollywood Reporter