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Entries in foreign films (424)

Saturday
Aug192017

New Oscar Chart ~ Foreign Hopefuls including Spain

Last month we shared speculation about what countries Argentina, Chile, Denmark, and The Czech Republic among others might submit to the Oscars this years. And we'll soon have more charts up. Spain narrowed down their finalists to three which is worth noting. The most successful countries in terms of Oscar in the later portions of the alphabet are Spain (19 nominations and 4 wins), Sweden (14 nominations and 3 wins) and Poland (10 nominations and 1 win). If you include the former Soviet Union stats with Russia's stats since 1992, they're approximately tied with Sweden.

Maribel Verdú in "Abracadabra" which is a finalist for Spain

Spain is currently in their longest dry spell of all time in this Oscar category (their last nominee The Sea Inside, which won, was 13 whole years ago). They will select their submission on September 7th but they've narrowed down their choice to the following three pictures: 

  • 1898: Our Last Men in the Philippines [This film is available to stream on Netflix]
    Luis Tosar and Javier Guteirrez star in Salvador Calvo's war epic about soldiers who held a town square under seige for almost a year in the Philippines even after Spain had surrended and The Philippines had become a free country.
  • Summer 1993 This is the first narrative feature from director Carla Simón who has previously made shorts and documentaries. It's in the Catalan language and about a six-year-old girl trying to adapt to a new life with her uncle after her mother's death. Simón won two prizes at Berlinale for this debut.
  • Abracadabra - My favorite Spanish submission of the past ten years was the great Snow White themed black and white silent Blancanieves.  The director (Pablo Berger) and star (Maribel Verdú) of that memorable entry (which inexplicably didn't make the finals) reunite for a colorful film which the director describes as a "paella of genres" but is at least partially a comedy about a woman who thinks her husband is possessed. Antonio de la Torre (Volver, The Last Circus) co-stars

I couldn't tell you which they'll choose as there's a definite pro for each, statistically. Consider: War films are often submitted to Oscar. Childhood-focused dramas are often beloved in this category. Countries generally like to return to directors they've submitted before. 

The foreign submission charts will be updated this weekend.

Tuesday
Aug082017

"I only need one of you to help me"

...please decide between yourselves."

Thursday
Aug032017

More TIFF Lineups: Midnight Madness and Platform

Another day another festival announcement. TIFF keeps adding to the festival. Even though they've reduced the number of films this year it's still SO MANY TO CHOOSE FROM IN EACH SECTION. Herewith the Midnight Madness and Platform choices. Let us know which ones you're most curious about!

Gael García Bernal in the French film "If You Saw His Heart"

PLATFORM
This section of 12 films, which tends to focus on directors in early stages of their careers, is actually juried (though TIFF isn't known for awards really outside of "People's Choice" which tends to have a strong correlation to eventual Best Picture nominations at the Oscars).

“Platform is the place to look for the distinct stamp of today's most interesting directors as they establish their reputations.
- -Cameron Bailey, TIFF's artistic director

The three-person jjury for 2017's Platform are directors Chen Kaige (China), Malgorzata Szumowska (Poland) and Wim Wenders (Germany)

Beast (UK) A troubled woman becomes involved with a suspected killer in this debut from Michael Pearce [WORLD PREMIERE]
Brad's Status (US) Screenwriter Mike White returns to the director's chair for this story about a man (Ben Stiller) comparing himself unfavorably to friends while touring colleges with his teenage son [WORLD PREMIERE]...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Jul282017

Venice Lineup 2017: mother!, Bardem & Cruz, and more...

Fall Film Festival season is rapidly approaching. TIFF let us know their "special presentations" with many more announcements to come and now Venice (which actually starts sooner at the tail end of August) has announced its whole lineup. The films, including out of competition reunions of two iconic screen couples (Javier Bardem & Penélope Cruz / Jane Fonda & Robert Redford), are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jul272017

New Oscar Chart ~ Foreign Hopefuls Part 1

We won't start hearing about "official submissions" for Oscar's Foreign Language Film race until September but until then, it's speculation time! The first chart is up looking at countries from Afghanistan through Ethiopia.

The most high profile film from this batch, other than possibly another Austrian submission from Michael Haneke (Happy End), is Chile's A Fantastic Woman. It's a trans drama that took three prizes at Berlinale. If it's as good as director Sebastian Lelio's previous Oscar submission (Gloria) we'll have to riot if he's passed over again. 

Other intriguing prospects include the well reviewed black and white fairy tale November from Estonia and possibly another submission from Oscar winner Jan Sverak of the Czech Republic. Sverak won the foreign film Oscar for his art house sleeper hit Kolya  (1996) about a stepfather and his little boy and his latest called Barefoot is another childhood tale set in the countryside during World War II.

Check out the chart and report back

 

Tuesday
Jul252017

TIFF Lineup! The Special Presentations & Galas

by Nathaniel R

Elle Fanning as author Mary Shelley

The annual Toronto International Film Festival, our personal favorite, is just two months away. Today they held a press conference to announce the first batch of films from their special presentations and gala sections (i.e. the premieres of multiple kinds, be it world premiere, international premiere, canadian premiere or whatnot).

A ton of films after the jump...

Click to read more ...

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