Page 1 of 1

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:58 am
by anonymous1980
Girl, Belgium (Lukas Dhont) 7.5/10 - A transgender 16 year old ballerina is transitioning just as she is training to effectively dance like a female. This film is kind of an eye-opening look at what it's like to experience adolescence as a transgender female. The film's rather controversial decision to cast a cisgender male actor to portray the lead part notwithstanding, the film is filled with empathy towards both the ambition to become a ballerina and her desire to be fully female and all the hardships (and pain, this is sometimes hard to watch) that go along with both those goals. I have to say that I personally have mixed feelings about the ending which, as someone who is not transgender and the fact that I do not wish to spoil it, can't comment any further on it but feel free to comment on your thoughts on it. Otherwise, it's a fine, fine film.

Will it get in? This will get comparisons to A Fantastic Woman, which just won last year which will be detrimental to its chances. But I can see it getting some votes.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Sat Oct 20, 2018 11:59 pm
by Precious Doll
Two more films neither which are unlikely to make any inroads into the contest.

The Great Buddha (Taiwan) is an absolute delight and highly original film. It is the feature film debut of Hsin-yao Huang and goodness knows we need more talented Taiwanese voices in cinema with Ang Lee departing to the west so to speak, Tsai Ming-laing moving into documentaries and short films (he announced a couple of years ago that he wouldn't be making another feature film - but we'll see) and Hsiao-Hsien Hou hasn't made a film since the The Assassin (2015).

The film was shot by Mong-Hong Chung (billed as Nagao Nakashima) in mostly stunning black and white. There are a couple of necessarily crude colour photography from time to time. The plot is truely original with well placed humour and tension. Whilst it has been playing the festival circuit with some success its pretty removed from what the Academy typically recognises.

Champions (Spain) A watchable comedy and desperate need of a good trimming as it clocks in at just over two hours which is way too much time for such thin material. For me the most interesting aspect of the film is that it was directed by and co-written by Javier Fesser, who wrote and directed the sublime Camino back in 2008, which was a very sombre drama about a teenage girl from a Opus Dei family grappling with a terminal disease. If Camino & Champions were played on a double bill, I honestly couldn't believe that they were from the same man, so different in every respect. Though Camino did have what appeared to be some black humour though it could be my take on the subject matter.

But in the end Champions is so slight. Back in the 1990s it might have stood a chance but far less so now.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Thu Oct 18, 2018 5:45 am
by Precious Doll
I've just seen the Greek submission, Polyxeni and frankly found the film impenetrable. Really had a hard time with the film and its one of those experience akin to watching something through the bottom of a glass that I simply could make little sense of.

Really doubt this will make any headway. I'm a little surprised that Greece didn't select The Last Note the first film directed by Pantelis Voulgaris who made the truely great, Little England back in 2014. Whilst I was disappointed with The Last Note it was certainly better and more Academy friendly than Polyxeni.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 4:47 pm
by Precious Doll
I'm so pleased you enjoyed The Heiresses so much Anonymous. I hope both yours and mine own enthusiasm will encourage others on the board to seek the film out regardless of how it fares at the Oscars. It is indeed a very special film that tells a type of story we very rarely see and with such freshness. Certainly one of the highlights of the year for me.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:27 am
by anonymous1980
The Heiresses, Paraguay (Marcello Martinessi) 8/10 - After her lover is imprisoned for fraud charges, an elderly lesbian sells off some of her wealthy family's silverware and furniture as well as driving around wealthy ladies in her neighborhood. I don't think I've ever seen a film from Paraguay before. Well, that's another country down. This is a very absorbing, often even funny look into the lives of an older queer woman. It is anchored by a truly magnificent central performance by Ana Brun who, on hindsight, barely has any lines yet her face and her actions say all we need to know about her. It features a poignant ending. This is a very good film all around.

Will it get in? It has a shot. But it's no slam-dunk. It might be a little low-key. It might get lost in the shuffle.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 2:22 pm
by Precious Doll
mlrg wrote:I guess Cuaron has this in the bag

One would think so given the acclaim, however there is the hurdle of Netflix. This will probably be their breakthrough to an Oscar win.

As more and more Academy members start working for streaming services and Netflix becomes the norm, prior resistance will breakdown.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 11:37 am
by mlrg
I guess Cuaron has this in the bag

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 9:34 am
by Precious Doll
Whilst it was expected the new Yimou Zhang may be China's submission, they have instead gone for a Jiang Wen film. What in hell does Zhangke Jia have to do for China to submit one of his films? Answer: make something that shows China is a pure phoney light. Ash is Purest White was unlikely to get any traction with the Academy but at least China allowed a decent release on the film on home turf as opposed to most of Jia's prior films. I suppose Jia's films just cuts too deep into a China that the Chinese Government would prefer filmmakers stayed clear of.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 7:23 am
by anonymous1980
The official submission list:

Afghanistan, “Rona Azim’s Mother,” Jamshid Mahmoudi, director
Algeria, “Until the End of Time,” Yasmine Chouikh, director
Argentina, “El Ángel,” Luis Ortega, director
Armenia, “Spitak,” Alexander Kott, director
Australia, “Jirga,” Benjamin Gilmour, director
Austria, “The Waldheim Waltz,” Ruth Beckermann, director
Bangladesh, “No Bed of Roses,” Mostofa Sarwar Farooki, director
Belarus, “Crystal Swan,” Darya Zhuk, director
Belgium, “Girl,” Lukas Dhont, director
Bolivia, “The Goalkeeper,” Rodrigo “Gory” Patiño, director
Bosnia and Herzegovina, “Never Leave Me,” Aida Begić, director
Brazil, “The Great Mystical Circus,” Carlos Diegues, director
Bulgaria, “Omnipresent,” Ilian Djevelekov, director
Cambodia, “Graves without a Name,” Rithy Panh, director
Canada, “Family Ties,” Sophie Dupuis, director
Chile, “…And Suddenly the Dawn,” Silvio Caiozzi, director
China, “Hidden Man,” Jiang Wen, director
Colombia, “Birds of Passage,” Cristina Gallego, Ciro Guerra, directors
Costa Rica, “Medea,” Alexandra Latishev, director
Croatia, “The Eighth Commissioner,” Ivan Salaj, director
Czech Republic, “Winter Flies,” Olmo Omerzu, director
Denmark, “The Guilty,” Gustav Möller, director;
Dominican Republic, “Cocote,” Nelson Carlo De Los Santos Arias, director
Ecuador, “A Son of Man,” Jamaicanoproblem, director
Egypt, “Yomeddine,” A.B. Shawky, director
Estonia, “Take It or Leave It,” Liina Trishkina-Vanhatalo, director
Finland, “Euthanizer,” Teemu Nikki, director
France, “Memoir of War,” Emmanuel Finkiel, director
Georgia, “Namme,” Zaza Khalvashi, director
Germany, “Never Look Away,” Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, director
Greece, “Polyxeni,” Dora Masklavanou, director
Hong Kong, “Operation Red Sea,” Dante Lam, director
Hungary, “Sunset,” László Nemes, director
Iceland, “Woman at War,” Benedikt Erlingsson, director
India, “Village Rockstars,” Rima Das, director
Indonesia, “Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts,” Mouly Surya, director
Iran, “No Date, No Signature,” Vahid Jalilvand, director;
Iraq, “The Journey,” Mohamed Jabarah Al-Daradji, director;
Israel, “The Cakemaker,” Ofir Raul Graizer, director;
Italy, “Dogman,” Matteo Garrone, director;
Japan, “Shoplifters,” Hirokazu Kore-eda, director;
Kazakhstan, “Ayka,” Sergey Dvortsevoy, director;
Kenya, “Supa Modo,” Likarion Wainaina, director;
Kosovo, “The Marriage,” Blerta Zeqiri, director;
Latvia, “To Be Continued,” Ivars Seleckis, director;
Lebanon, “Capernaum,” Nadine Labaki, director;
Lithuania, “Wonderful Losers: A Different World,” Arunas Matelis, director;
Luxembourg, “Gutland,” Govinda Van Maele, director;
Macedonia, “Secret Ingredient,” Gjorce Stavreski, director;
Malawi, “The Road to Sunrise,” Shemu Joyah, director;
Mexico, “Roma,” Alfonso Cuarón, director;
Montenegro, “Iskra,” Gojko Berkuljan, director;
Morocco, “Burnout,” Nour-Eddine Lakhmari, director;
Nepal, “Panchayat,” Shivam Adhikari, director;
Netherlands, “The Resistance Banker,” Joram Lürsen, director;
New Zealand, “Yellow Is Forbidden,” Pietra Brettkelly, director;
Niger, “The Wedding Ring,” Rahmatou Keïta, director;
Norway, “What Will People Say,” Iram Haq, director;
Pakistan, “Cake,” Asim Abbasi, director;
Palestine, “Ghost Hunting,” Raed Andoni, director;
Panama, “Ruben Blades Is Not My Name,” Abner Benaim, director;
Paraguay, “The Heiresses,” Marcelo Martinessi, director;
Peru, “Eternity,” Oscar Catacora, director;
Philippines, “Signal Rock,” Chito S. Roño, director;
Poland, “Cold War,” Pawel Pawlikowski, director;
Portugal, “Pilgrimage,” João Botelho, director;
Romania, “I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians,” Radu Jude, director;
Russia, “Sobibor,” Konstantin Khabensky, director;
Serbia, “Offenders,” Dejan Zecevic, director;
Singapore, “Buffalo Boys,” Mike Wiluan, director;
Slovakia, “The Interpreter,” Martin Šulík, director;
Slovenia, “Ivan,” Janez Burger, director;
South Africa, “Sew the Winter to My Skin,” Jahmil X.T. Qubeka, director;
South Korea, “Burning,” Lee Chang-dong, director;
Spain, “Champions,” Javier Fesser, director;
Sweden, “Border,” Ali Abbasi, director;
Switzerland, “Eldorado,” Markus Imhoof, director;
Taiwan, “The Great Buddha+,” Hsin-Yao Huang, director;
Thailand, “Malila The Farewell Flower,” Anucha Boonyawatana, director;
Tunisia, “Beauty and the Dogs,” Kaouther Ben Hania, director;
Turkey, “The Wild Pear Tree,” Nuri Bilge Ceylan, director;
Ukraine, “Donbass,” Sergei Loznitsa, director;
United Kingdom, “I Am Not a Witch,” Rungano Nyoni, director;
Uruguay, “Twelve-Year Night,” Álvaro Brechner, director;
Venezuela, “The Family,” Gustavo Rondón Córdova, director;
Vietnam, “The Tailor,” Buu Loc Tran, Kay Nguyen, directors;
Yemen, “10 Days before the Wedding,” Amr Gamal, director.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Sat Oct 06, 2018 5:58 pm
by Precious Doll
Well, just about all of the submissions are now in. We are still waiting for China who have been delayed due to some public holidays but Zhang Yimou's latest film Shadow is highly considered to the be the 'chosen one'. Apparently the film is a return to form by Yimou who hasn't made anything of note since House of the Flying Daggers back in 2004.

I've seen 17 of the selected films so far and expect to see another dozen or so in the coming two months.

I've already written about most of the films in another thread so I'm not going to repeat myself. Only to say that this is the order that I rank the films that I have seen:

01. Burning (South Korea) 9/10
02. Shoplifters (Japan) 8/10
03. The Heiresses (Paraguay) 8/10
04. Woman at War (Iceland) 7/10
05. Girl (Belgium) 7/10
06. I Am Not a Witch (United Kingdom) 7/10
07. Dogman (Italy) 7/10
08. Birds of Passage (Columbia) 7/10
09. Donbass (Ukraine) 6/10
10. The Wild Pear Tree (Turkey) 6/10
11. No Date, No Signature (Iran) 6/10
12. Cold War (Poland) 5/10
13. The Guilty (Denmark) 5/10
14. Border (Sweden) 5/10
15. Euthanzer (Findland) 4/10
16. Yomeddine (Egypt) 4/10
17. Capharnaum (Lebanaon) 1/10

Any thoughts on additional films I see, I'll add to this thread. As well as nearer the announcement of the shortlist I'll try to make predictions which will no doubt be way off.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Sat Oct 06, 2018 8:43 am
by anonymous1980
Like with the past thread, I shall be reviewing all the Foreign Language Film entries I see in this thread. Within the next six or so weeks, there's gonna be a bunch of film festivals happening and several of the entries will be screened. The lineup will include: Shoplifters, Burning, Girl, Cold War, among others. Here's the first:

Campeones, Spain (Javier Fesser) 7/10 - An arrogant pro-basketball coach is caught drunk driving and is sentenced to 90 days community service coaching a basketball team comprised of mentally disabled individuals. Hmm. Will the coach learn to humble himself and improve/inspire the team? Will there be a championship game? Will they learn the meaning of teamwork and self-worth? I think we all know where this is heading. This film is a real crowd-pleaser and it's unique because they cast actual mentally disabled actors to play the mentally disabled roles which was a wise decision, otherwise, I don't think the comedy would've worked as well. That said, this film has a lot of good laughs in it and manages to be largely tasteful and even manages to be moving in the end. That said, it's still a formulaic sports movie. But at least it's a well-crafted one.

Will it get in? It will have its fans. But it's fluff, the politically correct casting notwithstanding. I think the Academy actively looks for more artistically ambitious and "Important" with a capital I movies in this day and age. I'm leaning towards no but not out of the question.

Re: List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Sat Aug 04, 2018 8:58 am
by Precious Doll
Two more countries have announced their submissions:

Romania - I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians
Switzerland - Eldorado

List of submissions to the 91st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

Posted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 2:22 am
by Precious Doll
The Wikipedia link is now up and with the first submission Crystal Swan from Belarus: ... guage_Film