Did the selfie ban stick? Was Sea of Trees really that bad? And is dadbod here to stay? Answers below:

Gaspar Noé failed to get the memo about selfies; it wasn't a vintage year for beefcake; and as for poor Sea of Trees... Here are the Tim Robey's five big takeaways from this year's Cannes Film Festival:

1. Don't wear flats on the red carpet


High-heel-gate kicked off when several fifty-something ticket-holders were turned away from Todd Haynes' Carol, for refusing to totter up the steps on four-inch stilettos. Reportedly at least one woman had a severe medical condition which made it necessary for her to wear flats, but the Palais gatekeepers were deaf to her pleas. Irony of ironies that the film they were queuing to see is about the constricted liberty of women in the Fifties: on the Croisette, plus ça change. 

2. The Sea of Trees shouldn't have been here

The McConnaissance, it turns out, has a limit. Loud boos greeted Matthew's gimmicky suicide drama on its first press screening, and the critical pack duly descended: a steep fall from grace for Gus Van Sant, director of 2003's Palme d'Or-winning Elephant. PR puffery tried to riposte that the official gala was warmly received – hardly surprising, with all the film's makers and producers present. The damage was done, though, and in hindsight a Toronto premiere would have been much more forgivingly received. (Read: does Cannes have a boos problem?)

3. Gaspar Noé's idea of a selfie stick is below the belt


Festival chief Thierry Frémaux had issued a stern edict against red-carpet selfies this year, but there was nothing to prevent the on-screen variety. Gaspar Noé's hardcore sex marathon Love, which features a cameo for the notoriously outré director, indulges in one, but it's not his face we're looking at. The sight of this angry protuberance, in you-could-take-an-eye-out-with-that-thing 3D, no less, might be the ultimate example of this enfant terrible sticking it to his audience.

4. Dadbod is here to stay

While the Croisette was typically flooded with stick-thin fashion victims in just-in-case evening wear, the male stars of this year's festival looked to have been eating all the pies. Colin Farrell's sadsack leading role in The Lobster was a prime example, as were Josh Brolin's chunky new look in Sicario, Benicio Del Toro in a pair of films, and Joaquin Phoenix's sizeable paunch in Irrational Man. Still, none could hold a human candle to Gérard Depardieu in Valley of Love, who now looks as though he could more or less eat the lot of them without worrying about the next belt notch.

5. Always stay to the end

Credit: Studio Canal/GenEditorial72

Patience is a virtue at Cannes. This applies to the festival as a whole – anyone leaving before the final Saturday will have missed Justin Kurzel's tremendously stylish Macbeth – and also to individual movies. A lengthy shot of Tim Roth running, right at the end of the competition entry Chronic, prompted a trickle of walkouts from badge-holders presumably racing to their next film. But they'll have a rather different and inadequate sense of the film from the majority in the screening, who got to see What Happened Next in the wholly unexpected final seconds.