Gael Garcia Bernal is finding the Cannes Film Festival a lot more relaxing as a director than as an actor.

He says once you finish a movie, there’s not much else to do, so he can “let myself go.”

His “Chicuarotes” is playing as an official selection but out of competition at Cannes. It follows two teenage friends in a town within Mexico City who turn to crime in an attempt to change their lives. The Mexican star says the lives of the characters are completely foreign to what he experienced growing up.

Director Gael Garcia Bernal poses for portrait photographs for the film 'Chicuarotes' at the 72nd international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Tuesday, May 21, 2019. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)
Director Gael Garcia Bernal poses for portrait photographs for the film ‘Chicuarotes’ at the 72nd international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Tuesday, May 21, 2019. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)

He says he grew up in a very loving family and the characters did not, and he can’t understand how “anyone grows up like that.”

Actors Benny Emmanuel, from left, Leidi Gutierrez and director Gael Garcia Bernal pose for portrait photographs for the film 'Chicuarotes' at the 72nd international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Tuesday, May 21, 2019. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)
Actors Benny Emmanuel, from left, Leidi Gutierrez and director Gael Garcia Bernal pose for portrait photographs for the film ‘Chicuarotes’ at the 72nd international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Tuesday, May 21, 2019. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)