Cannes 2023: How to Have Sex, Los Delincuentes, The New Boy | Festivals & Awards

The low-simmering tensions between Taz and her friends, the barbed jokes Skye makes at her expense and the competitive jealousy that builds between them as they vie for male attention, leaves Taz feeling unhappy and isolated. Once Taz loses her virginity, a disorienting experience that causes her to withdraw even further, her confusion casts a dreadful pall over the film’s second half, the atmosphere’s low neon buzz fading as the sun rises and the hangovers hit. Navigating the bramble of thorny emotions she feels over this long-awaited moment, Taz struggles to discuss with her friends what has transpired, to articulate it herself. But as the week progresses, her sense of devastation proves difficult to shake, and her friends begin to question why she seems so uncharacteristically subdued.

McKenna-Bruce is magnetic in what should be a star-making performance; conveying the innocence concealed by Taz’s party-hard attitude and capturing the lingering pain of her internal processing. And Manning Walker is careful never to judge her characters or resort to reductive didacticism, instead approaching “How to Have Sex” as an unflinching but empathetic look at consent, violation, and the surrounding gray areas of sexual experience. This is fresh, passionate, and remarkably assured filmmaking, made with ample energy and even more exhilarating clarity of vision.

Also acquired by MUBI for worldwide release shortly following its premiere in the Un Certain Regard lineup at Cannes was Rodrigo Moreno’s “Los Delincuentes,” a consistently playful, gradually beguiling existential drama on the multitudinous subject of work and freedom from a well-regarded figure of the New Argentine Cinema movement.

Paced across a leisurely winding 189 minutes, the film opens as a heist film of sorts, with long-time bank employee Morán (Daniel Eliás) stealing a rather modest sum from his workplace—by his calculations, it’s twice the amount he would make if he continued at the bank until retirement age—with a plan to turn himself in and retrieve the money once released from prison. Morán is tired of working, he tells coworker Román (Esteban Bigliardi) while dragging him into the scheme. In exchange for concealing the cash from investigators, he says, Román can have half of it, and they can both retire comfortably. As for the prison sentence, that’s easy math—he’d rather sit behind bars for three and a half years than work for 25 more.