Titane and the Power of Being in the Dark

Secrets are seldom kept in today’s digital, social media-centralized world. Information can be accessed at the tap of a finger (some truthful, some less so) and the news cycle rotates throughout our screens each hour of the day. As with every other aspect of our way of life impacted by this hyper-speed info sharing, the movie industry has suffered. With nearly every major picture released in recent years comes the high probability of spoilers popping up on Twitter, Reddit, Instagram, and almost every communication app one could install. The most notable example of this are the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, where every single update and detail of a new release gets passed around as if people could not wait it out for the surprise once they enter the theater. In the bigger picture, however, blockbuster franchises are not the only ones affected by this public need for spoiler talk. 

In 2020, Cannes – the biggest film festival in the world – announced that there would be no awards ceremony for the coming year. This was amidst a pandemic, of course, and the number of films released within the year was considerably fewer than the standard. This year, Cannes dropped with a big surprise as they awarded Julia Docournau’s wholly unique body horror coming-of-age film Titane. Critics and audiences alike (and I included) have raved that there really is nothing out there quite like this both beautiful and horrifying French drama, and so it leaves for worry that part of what makes Titane so exceptional — its twisted story and directional choices — will be undermined by internet word of mouth. Like Cannes’ previous winner, Parasite, this is something audiences should go into knowing as little as possible, yet there have already been many people online who have ruined such an experience by spoiling the details among the masses. What a shame! It makes one wonder if there will ever come a time where secrecy among art can return to the way it once was; that is just one of many pieces of movie magic.