Cannes journal #2:

Midnight for Maniacs programmer vs. rude blue light specialists

FEST REPORT Cannes shocker! Grown men and women are opening up their gawddamn BlackBerrys and cell phones to check, send, and even leave messages during the actual screenings! Who would have guessed that audiences at the Cannes Film Festival, the "greatest film festival in the world," would act just like the audiences at the Century 20 in Daly City, California?

But not to fear, film lovers, I've taken it upon myself to have the audacity, when someone sitting next to me starts to check their messages, to tell them to stop.

I've offended three Frenchmen, three Americans, and a German woman so far.

How can anyone be thinking about their next film when you have Ashley Judd screaming her guts out (literally) in William Friedkin's unrelenting new schizo-shocker, Bug? Or how can you actually start talking to your production partner about your last meeting when you have Ethan Hawke single-handedly breaking down the problems of America in Richard Linklater's inspirational Fast Food Nation?

But more important, why are you checking soccer scores during the quietest, most moving film of the festival so far, Paz Encina's Hamaca Paraguaya? If you want to do something with a phone or text message, please ... please, get some manners: Stop acting like you didn't realize how distracting it is, take the damn phone, followed by yourself, and get the fuck out of the theater. Please. (I'm not even going to talk about how this French woman ironically decided to layer on a whole new coat of lipstick, eye shadow, and blush during the most grotesque sequence in György P?