The critics of the Cannes Film Festival love a mass walkout, protesting their dislike of a film with the sound of stamping feet. David Cronenberg’s latest movie, Crimes of the Future, is the figure of controversy for this year’s festival seeing a number of walkouts upon its premiere, with star Kristen Stewart calling the situation “beautiful”.
Premiering on Monday, May 23rd, the film saw a good number of walkouts in the first five minutes due to a particularly gory scene during the movie’s introduction.
In conversation with Vulture, Stewart stated that there’s a “delicacy” to Cronenberg’s film that many people are overlooking. Playing an investigator named Timlin in the iconic filmmaker’s latest body horror, Stewart appears alongside Viggo Mortensen and Léa Seydoux, with each character attempting to adapt to a future wherein pain equals pleasure.
“Before the credits lifted, it was dead silent,” the actor revealed, adding, “I was like, ‘Ooh, people don’t know how to feel. They don’t know if they should clap or not.’ I felt like it was the fuckin’ Will Smith moment where everyone was like, ‘Yes? No? No. Okay, actually no!’ Like do people have to look to their left and right to see if people like it before they clap?”.
Telling the story of a performance artist who grows organs on stage in front of a live audience, the film received a six-minute standing ovation despite the mass walkouts.
Explaining her love of the film, Stewart concludes, “It’s a lot to take on at first, I guess. But to me, the movie is so simply sweet. Yes, we’re barrelling towards certain death, for sure. But there’s a delicacy to the movie that, even in the gory stuff, I was really bewitched by it. Everyone talking about walking out and how intense it was. I was like, ‘It’s not intense! It’s really beautiful’”.