CANNES, France: Austrian director Michael Haneke was the popular winner of the Cannes film festival's top honour yesterday with Love (Amour), an elegiac tale of an elderly couple facing the inescapable, yet no less tragic march of death.
Haneke joins an elite group of two-time winners of the coveted Palme d'Or at the world's biggest film festival after his The White Ribbon won in 2009.
Love also won plaudits for its two main actors, Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva, both in their 80s.
The Grand Prix runner-up prize was awarded to Reality, Matteo Garrone's examination of society's obsession with celebrity and reality television.
Two other previous Palme d'Or winners picked up prizes.
British director Ken Loach won the Jury third prize for his charming Scottish whisky caper The Angels' Share and Romania's Cristian Mungiu scooped the screenplay honour for Beyond the Hills about a real-life exorcism gone wrong.