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Entries in foreign films (437)

Tuesday
Sep262017

NYFF: Kiyoshi Kurosawa's "Before We Vanish"

by Jason Adams

I want you to close your eyes. I want you to close your eyes, and picture Love. Not Valentine's Day Heart Cards or little sugary candies that say Eat Me, and not the faces of the people you've held hands with on cold afternoon walks, although the latter will probably help you on your way of getting there. I want you to picture the entire concept of Love. The warmth and the palpable agony of it - the electricity of fingertips and further parts intertwining and entangling, and the aftershock of separation - the whole dang lot.

Now I want you to imagine the violence of all of that being torn out of your body...

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Sunday
Sep242017

NYFF: Félicité, the Real and the Fanciful

by Murtada

Set in Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of Congo - a country which has seen a lot of strife in its recent history - Félicité is the new film from Alain Gomis, a French director of Guinea-Bissauan and Senegalese descent. It tells the story of its eponymous heroine, a singer trying to put a life together and barely making it work. The first few scenes establishes Félicité’s daily grind. She sings nights in a makeshift bar, comes home to tiny place. Her fridge is not working, she needs someone to fix it. Yet money is scarce so she has to make do with a local guy who’s obviously not the right person for the job.

Things start taking a turn for the worse when her teenage son is seriously injured in an accident...

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Thursday
Sep212017

Three can't-miss movies directed by women on the festival circuit

our continuing adventures at TIFF with a little NYFF thrown in.

This year I made a conscious effort to see films directed by women at the Toronto International Film Festival. Nearly half of the films I screened had women behind the camera! Even though a few of them were unsatisfying, a handful were gems so praise be to TIFF that there were so many to choose from. Other festivals haven't been as inclusive. We've already discussed the tragic romance of Mary Shelley, the visually stunning The Breadwinner, the what-were-they-thinking Kings, the confounding but admirably crafted Zama, the dramatic misfire of Euphoria, and Hungary's strange and totally involving Oscar submission On Body and Soul.

I saved the three best for last. If you get a chance to see Western (playing at NYFF September 30th and October 1st), the Austrian costume drama Mademoiselle Paradis, or a hard to describe miracle from Indonesia called The Seen and the Unseen please take it. Unfortunately none currently have US release dates (though Western does apparently have some sort of stateside distribution planned for 2018). We'll take them alphabetically after the jump...

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Wednesday
Sep202017

TIFF: Euphoria and Zama disappoint

We've got a a few more adventures from TIFF to get through. Here are two pictures Euphoria and Zama that I was greatly looking forward to for disparate reasons (the lead actors and the director, respectively). But neither one did it for me and I sincerely hope other future eyeballs will enjoy them more...

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Thursday
Sep142017

TIFF Discovery: A Shirley Henderson Master Class and a Wild Argentinian Family

by Sean Donovan

The films featured in TIFF’s ‘Discovery’ section are sometimes given short shrift by the festival at large. Already arriving with the disadvantage of being announced last, and thereby with the least amount of time for anticipation to brew, these small modest productions (many of which are debut features for their directors) are easily buried underneath the hype of awards season giants and glitzy red carpets. If that’s the macro view of things, in micro the audiences that find their way to ‘Discovery’ films are incredibly eager and excited, anxious for the chance to look at films that may never find healthy distribution outside of festival spaces. Here are two of the absolute highlights of TIFF’s ‘Discovery’ program:

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Monday
Sep112017

Two more Oscar submissions announced

The foreign Oscar submissions keep on coming. Egypt will be submitting Sheikh Jackson, a potential crowd pleaser about an Islamic cleric undergoing an identity crisis when he flashes back to his Michael Jackson obsessed youth when Michael dies. Egypt has yet to be Oscar-nominated but who knows.

A more likely nominee on paper, given the history, is Poland's Spoor (originally called Pokot) a murder mystery directed by Agnieska Holland. The film about an animal rights activist that becomes involved in a string of mysterious crimes has been getting interestingly mixed reviews. Holland first came to international fame (and Oscar love) with her big arthouse hit and WW II drama Europa Europa (1990) and was recently in the hunt again with the foreign film nominee In Darkness (2011). You could argue that she's Oscar's second favorite Polish director (of those who kept making movies in Poland, that is) after the late legendary Andrzej Wajda who was up for the foreign film Oscar four times and eventually received an Honorary.

The charts are here

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