Without Subtitles, with added controversy

There’s an interesting twist to the tale of Simon Aitken’s latest short, Without Subtitles. It’s been summarily rejected for the Short Film Corner at the Cannes Film Festival.

This is, to put it mildly, something of a surprise. The SFC is famous for accepting a much wider range of films than you’d think, and it’s unusual for the committee to reject a film unless it’s overtly racist, pornographic or, in the words of the guidelines, has “no cinematic artistic value.” Yet Without Subtitles, which I personally think is one of Simon’s strongest works, was bounced back to him within 24 hours of submission – surprising for a festival that believe in letting film-makers sweat before letting them know if they’ve made the cut.

Simon and his writer and lead actor Ben Green pronounce themselves flummoxed by the decision. As do I. Simon has put a temporary link up to Without Subtitles, which I’ve embedded below. Any comments on why you believe the Short Film Corner should so quickly reject the film are welcome. Is it anti-French, or mysogynistic? As Simon points out in the comments, it’s based on a true story. Or is there another reason why Without Subtitles cannot be shown at the Cannes Film Festival?

(If the temp link is down let me know and I’ll endeavour to get you a new one.)

UPDATE: there’s a fan page on Facebook. Of course there is.