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Janelle Monae's Breakout Year

One of my favourite artists of the decade. I've had the pleasure of seeing her live twice. I would've loved to see more of her in Moonlight. Loved that role and loved seeing her. -Roger

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89th Oscars. Oscar Contenders of 2016 - For prediction, discussion, entertainment purposes only

 discuss on the blog

Part 3 - NEW ZEALAND through YEMEN
30 of 85 official submissions
Updated: October 22nd, 2016
 See all the trailers 

Afghanistan to Estonia - 25 Official Submissions
Finland to The Netherlands - 30 Official Submissions
HQ - Predictions and Trivia 

 

New Zealand
never nominated (submitting since 2011)

A FLICKERING TRUTH
Dir. Pietra Brettkelly
96 minutes
Dari
 Trailer

REVIEWED 

A documentary about Afghanistan and the challenges of film preservation

Norway
5 noms | 0 wins (submitting since 1957)

THE KING'S CHOICE
Dir. Erik Poppe
133 minutes
Norwegian, Danish, German 
 Trailer

A World War II drama about German soldiers arriving in Oslo

Not Selected:
The other two finalists were  Pyromaniac and Welcome to Norway

Coverage of last year's submission:
The Wave

Pakistan
never nominated
(submitting since )

MAH E MIR
Dir. Anjum Shahzad
minutes
Urdu
Official Site  |  Trailer

Set in two time frames, modern day Karachi and 18th century Dehli. A young poet driven to madness discovers the work of the god of poetry Meer Taqi Meer so it's part biopic, too.

Palestine
2 nominations
(submitting since 2003)

THE IDOL
Dir. Hany Abu-Assad
100 minutes
Arabic & Spanish
 Trailer 

Available to Rent on Amazon

This is the true story of a young musician who wants to compete on "Arab Idol"

Both of the previous submissions from Abu-Assad have been nominated, Paradise Now and Omar.

 

 

 

Panama
never nominated
(submitting since 2014)

SALSIPUEDES
Dir. Ricardo Aguilar Navarro & Manuel Rodriguez
Spanish
Official Site |  Trailer

A young boy who was sent to the US to escape bad influences returns ten years later to meet his father

 

Peru
1 nomination (submitting since 1967)

VIDEOPHILIA (AND OTHER VIRAL SYNDROMES)
Dir. Juan Daniel Fernández
minutes
Spanish & English
 Trailer

A teenage misfit meets an amateur pornographer who meet online take their relationship to the real world

The Philippines
never nominated (submitting since 1956)

MA ROSA
Dir. Brillante Mendoza
110 minutes
Tagalog 
Official Site  |  Trailer

A poor mother of four sells drugs on the side. Won Best Actress at Cannes

Not Selected:
Felix Manalo, Shadow Behind Moon, Honor Thy Father, Sorrowful Mystery, Dukot, Pamilya Ordinaryo, Agony & Fury, Pact 

Coverage of Last Year's Submission:
Heneral Luna

Poland
10 nominations | 1 win (submitting since 1963)

AFTERIMAGE
Dir. Andrzej Wajda
98 minutes
Polish
 Trailer 

Wajda, who just died (RIP), is an Oscar favorite. He's been submitted by Poland nine times with four nominations in this category (The Promised Land, The Maids of Wilko, Man of Iron, Katyn). He also received an honorary Oscar in 2000. We shall see if this avante garde artist biopic does it for him again posthumously. 

Portugal
never nominated* (submitting since 1980)

LETTERS FROM WAR
Dir. Ivo Ferreira
105 minutes
Portugeuse 
 Trailer

A black and white drama based on an epistolary novel in which a soldier and his wife write to each other during a war in the 1970s

* Portugal has the distinction of being the country that has submitted most often without any success. So we're rooting for them to break through each year!

Romania
never nominated (submitting since 1966)

SIERANEVADA
Cristi Puiu
173 minutes
Romanian
 Trailer

A neurologist attends a family celebration of his late father. Things do not go as planned. Puiu was submitted once before for the critic's darling The Death of Mr Lazarescu

Not Selected:
Cristian Mungiu's Graduation

 

Russia
14 noms | 4 wins* (submitting since 1963 as the USSR / as Russia since 1992)

PARADISE
Dir. Andrei Konchalovsky
130 minutes
Russian, German, French
Official Site |  Trailer

Three lives (German, French, and Russian) cross during World War II. In black and white (with some color). Konchalovsky was submitted once before for House of Fools (2002)

Not SelectedThe Duelist and Zoology

*This stat includes the Russian stats with the USSR's record

Saudi Arabia
never nominated
(submitted first in 2013)

BARAKAH MEETS BARAKAH
Dir. Mahmoud Sabbagh
 Trailer
88 minutes
Arabic

It's Saudia Arabia's first romantic comedy about a middle class guy and a wealthy girl

Serbia
never nominated (submitting since 1994)

TRAIN DRIVER'S DIARY
Dir. Milos Radovic 
85 minutes
Serbian
 Trailer

Billed as a tragicomedy - A retiring train driver holds a horrible record: most accidental deaths during his trips. 

 

Singapore
never nominated (first submitted in 1959, then in 2005 and frequently since)

APPRENTICE
Dir. Boo Junfeng
115 minutes
Malay & English
 Trailer 

REVIEWED 

 a young secretive man trains to be an executioner

 

Slovakia
1 nom / 1 win* (submitting since 1993)

EVA NOVA
Dir. Marko Skop
106 minutes
Slovak
 Trailer 

Available to Stream on Festival Scope

a former famous actress and alcoholic tries to reconcile with her son

* Slovakia's only nom / win came as part of the original Czechoslokakia before the country split The Shop of Main Street (1965) was Slovakian.

Coverage of Last Year's Submission:
The Goat

 

 

Slovenia
never nominated (submitting since 1993)

HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM!
Dir. Ziga Virc
88 minutes
Slovene, Serbian, Croatian, English
Official Site  |  Trailer

A documentary fiction hybrid about the myths of America's purchase of Yugoslavia's space program in the 1960s. Produced by HBO Europe so they'll have money to campaign with and the American-specific topic won't hurt

South Africa
2 noms | 1 win
(submitting since 1989)

CALL ME THIEF
Dir. Daryne Joshua
150 minutes
Afrikaans
 Trailer 

A true story about a man in prison who discovers his gift for storytelling.

South Korea
never nominated (submitting since 1962)

THE AGE OF SHADOWS
Kim Jee-Woon
139 minutes
Korean
 Trailer

Currently Playing in the US

Set in the 1920s, resistant fighters try to destroy Japanese facilities in Seoul. Stars the very popular actor Song Kang-Ho from The Host, Snowpiercer, Memories of Murder, Thirst etcetera) 

Not Selected:
Critical darling The Handmaiden from Park Chan-Wook

Spain
19 nom | 4 wins (submitting since 1956)

JULIETA
Dir. Pedro Almodóvar
99 minutes
Spanish 
Official Site  |  Trailer

Spain is in its longest dry spell ever without a nomination. Their last was 2004's The Sea Inside (which won).

Not Selected: 
The Olive Tree
 and The Bride were the two finalists.

Coverage of Last Year's Submission:
Flowers 

Sweden
14 noms | 3 wins (submitting since 1956)

A MAN CALLED OVE
Dir. Hannes Holm
116 minutes
Swedish / Persian 
 Trailer

Currently playing in the US 

A crotchedly old retiree develops a friendship with his immigrant neighbors

(Sweden is in its longest dry spell ever without a nomination. Their last was 2004's As It Is in Heaven)

 Coverage of Last Year's Submission:
A Pigeon Sat on a Branch... 

 

Switzerland
5 noms | 2 wins (submitting since 1961)

MY LIFE AS A COURGETTE
 
 Dir. Claude Barras
66 minutes
French
Official Site |  Trailer

REVIEWED

This animated feature, sure to be the shortest submission, is about an orphan trying to adapt to his new group home.

(Switzerland is in its longest dry spell ever without a nomination. Their last was 1990 with Journey of Hope)

Taiwan
3 noms | 1 win* (submitting since 1957)

HANG IN THERE, KIDS
Dir. Laha Mebow
90 minutes
Mandarin, Aboroginal 
Official Site |  Trailer

Three school children from the country, inspired by a new teacher, take a trip to Taipei

*all the Oscar nominations for Taiwan are actually Ang Lee films!

Coverage of Last Year's Submission:
The Assassin 

Thailand
never nominated (submitting since 1984)

KARMA
Dir. Kanittha Kwunyoo
 91 minutes
Thai
 Trailer 

a young man who was forced to become a monk, becomes intimate with a village girl

Turkey
never nominated (submitting since ...)

COLD OF KALANDAR
Dir. Mustafa Kara
  139 minutes
Turkish 
 Trailer 

A family drama in a small mountain village. The father wants to compete in a bull competition so he spends time training a bull.

 

Ukraine
1 nom *
(submitting since 1997)

UKRANIAN SHERIFFS
Dir. Roman Bondarchuk
83 minutes
Ukrainian
 Trailer

A documentary about two sheriffs serving a small town

* Ukraine's sole nomination came as part of the USSR, 1984's Wartime Romance

 

United Kingdom
2 nomination
(submiting since 1991)

UNDER THE SHADOW
Dir. Babak Anvari
84 minutes
Persian 
 Trailer

REVIEWED

Currently playing in the US, Spirit Nom

This is a debut feature (a horror thriller even which is fairly rare for submission genres) about a mother and daughter in Tehran haunted by a mysterious evil in the 1980s

Uruguay
1 nom | 0 wins* (submitting since 1992)

BREAD CRUMBS
Dir. Manane Rodriguez
??? minutes
Spanish
 Trailer 

Starring Cecilia Roth (All About My Mother)

* Uruguay's sole nominee A Place in the World (1992) was disqualfied after its nod

Coverage of Last Year's Submission:
Under a Moonless Night 

Venezuela
never nominated (submitting since 1978)

DESDE ALLA / FROM AFAR
Lorenzo Vigas
93 minutes
Spanish
 Trailer 

REVIEWED

Currently Streaming on Netflix

A violent romantic relationship between an older man (Chilean star Alfredo Castro)  and the young thief he picks up from the street

Vietnam
1 nomination
(submitting since 1993)

YELLOW FLOWERS ON THE GREEN GRASS
Dir. Victor Wu
103 minutes
Vietnamese
 Trailer

 the story of two little brothers in the late 80s in a village in Vietnam

Yemen
FIRST
SUBMISSION!


I AM NOJOOM, AGE 10 AND DIVORCED
Dir. Khadija Al-Salami
103 minutes
Vietnamese
 Trailer

 a young girl asks a judge to grant her a divorce from her awful husband

 

Albania to Estonia - 25 Official Submissions
Finland to The Netherlands - 30 Official Submissions
HQ - Predictions and Trivia