With the weekend over we are getting near to the half way stage in terms of the screening of Competition titles, and to be frank it has all been a little underwhelming so far.

Mike Leigh’s Another Year still leads the way in terms of ratings from the Screen International panel of critics, receiving one of the highest ever percentage scores. It is in stark contast to Takeshi Kitano’s new film Outrage, which has so far received threee ‘x’ ratings…the lowest score a critic can give a film.

There had been high expectations for Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s new film Biutiful, starring Javier Bardem, which screened this morning, but some critics have been disappointed with its bleakness and lengthy running time.

Down the line hopes are being pinned on Ken Loach’s Route Irish; Lee Chang-dong’s Poetry and Rachid Bouchareb’s Outside Of The Law, but there is a niggling feeling amongst some critics that it is shaping up to be less than a classic year.

There was also a certain disappointment that Jean-Luc Godard cancelled his visit to the festival for the press conference following the Un Certain Regard screening of his new film Film Socialisme.