Oscar-winning actor Matthew McConaughey has brushed aside criticism of his new movie The Sea of Trees at the ongoing Cannes Film Festival.
The 45-year-old actor stars as a suicidal man who has travelled to Japan to kill himself in the film.
Heckles and boos were heard at Friday’s press screening, but McConaughey said, “People have as much right to boo as to ovate.”
The film is directed by Gus Van Sant, whose film Elephant won the coveted Palme d’Or at Cannes in 2003. Reviews for the film, which also stars Naomi Watts and Ken Watanabe, have also been fairly negative, with the Guardian’s one-star review calling it “a fantastically annoying and dishonest tear-jerker”.
Speaking to journalists, Van Sant said, “I read one review this morning and it was very definitive, I was imagining everyone was the same as this person so I thought, ‘Now we know where we stand,’ which was kind of nice.”
Referring to the 2003 festival, he continued, “There was apparently some kind of fight after the Elephant screening, like fisticuffs over whether it was good or bad, which I thought was interesting.”