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"While it doesn't seem groundbreaking, I know I will watch it eventually because of the four legends in the cast." - Rebecca

"Adored both Bergen and Keaton (and Garcia!), liked Fonda and unfortunately, thought Steenburgen kind of drew the short straw here. Overall, had a ball!" - Andrew


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Entries in Scandinavia (83)

Saturday
May192018

Cannes Wins Pt 1: Un Certain Regard, Queer Palm, Palm Dog

by Nathaniel R

Cannes closing ceremony is later today but we have the first round of winners from the sidebars, official and otherwise. So let's get right to it...

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Thursday
May172018

Beauty Break: Gorgeous Norwegians for "Syttende Mai"

by Nathaniel R

The iconic Liv Ullman photographed by Sam Levin

Today is a big Norwegian holiday (the equivalent of their 4th of July) so let's celebrate stunning Norsk men and women from the movies, shall we? The gallery is after the jump...

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Wednesday
Dec202017

100 Biggest Foreign Language Hits of 2017

Our year in review party begins. A different list each day. Here's Nathaniel R...

In the Fade didnt risk release in 2017 after all, hoping for Oscar favor to buoy its release in 2018Time for an annual look back at subtitled fare in cinemas. As with last year's list India, China, Mexico, and South Korea dominate with a smattering of other countries faring much less well in the American marketplace. Much of that is due, we think, to dedicated distributors focusing specifically on one market like FIP, China Lion and WellGo. Some of the movies we though might be big deals this year like Chile's Oscar nominee A Fantastic Woman opted for Oscar qualifying release only and Germany's Oscar finalist In the Fade starring Diane Kruger (pictured left) opted to sneak out at the last second to qualify for all Oscars though it did not receive nominations, buried in that post Christmas glut of tiny releases.

For the purposes of this list we skipped documentaries and animated films to keep the list more focused (and avoid arguments about dubbed versions or whatnot) but please to know that had we kept them in the wonderful Turkish street cat documentary Kedi would be in the top ten right here. This list is otherwise, as carefully as we could manage, accurate though we're happy to take corrections should we have missed something.

TOP 100 FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILMS FOR 2017
Listed By US Box Office Gross only 
Title links go to reviews | 🔺 = still in theaters
Note: Figures are as of January 21st, 2018

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Friday
Dec082017

Streamable doc short finalists: "Kayayo" and "Ten Meter Tower"

by Nathaniel R

TEN METER TOWER

This week the Academy announced the ten finalists for documentary short and the ten finalists for animated short.  The Oscar charts are updated. At least 5 of those 20 are available to watch online. You've probably already seen the wonderful animated coming-out short "In a Heartbeat" that was so popular online earlier this year but it won't be the only tiny Oscar-seeker with big value. That's why the short categories are wonderful, quite often you get much artistic bang for little buck.

Will get to the animated docs later but of the ten doc short Oscar options there are four you can watch online...

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Thursday
Sep282017

NYFF: Norway's Oscar Submission "Thelma"

by Jason Adams

Sometimes a critic can't help but interject him or herself into a review, and Joaquim Trier's Thelma is one of those times for me. Thelma tells the story of a young woman from a cripplingly religious family who goes off to college and starts having epileptic seizures that coincide with an awakening of same-sex longings. Meanwhile I'm the homosexual son of an epileptic and was raised in a speak-in-tongues Pentecostal church. Needless to say I felt Thelma, you guys.

So much that it's hard to divorce myself critically to see the forest for the dead birds dropping down among the trees. Trier gets so many precise details so right that I know from my own specific, particular life experience - the warm waves of excitement and guilt at discovering drink and swear-words when you first leave home; the way an epileptic seizure can be a sudden horrific tearing open of reality itself's seams -  that I'm more than willing to go along with anything he does, even when it is sometimes a hint too austere for its own good.

It's hard to say something that features a woman deep-throating a python - but you know, in a sexy way - remains austere, but Trier manages. He is Norwegian, after all. Thelma is an ice pond of a film floating over fiery little volcanic eruptions - like its protagonist (an exquisitely conflicted Eili Harboe) Thelma is Fire & Ice, Passion & Repression, a Freudian phantasmagoria strapped into a cool silk blouse.

Thursday
Sep142017

TIFF: Glenn Close is "The Wife"

our ongoing adventures at TIFF. An abdriged version of this review was originally published in Nathaniel's column at Towleroad.

Film festivals nearly always provide curious dialogues between films that you weren't expecting. On the same day on the exact same screen at TIFF I managed to see two films about female writers and the male writers in their lives who take up all the oxygen (and praise) in the room. Who would have thought that a film about the origins of Frankenstein (just discussed) and a star vehicle for Glenn Close in Stockholm would have so much in common? 

THE WIFE (Björn Runge)
Joan Castleman (Glenn Close) is a longsuffering wife who would bristle at that very description. She's married to a famous novelist Joe Castleman (Jonathan Pryce) and their homophonic names are no coincidence. The silver-haired couple have been together for nearly half a century and are inseparable if not quite interchangeable...

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