List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Precious Doll » Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:02 am

Spain has selection Summer 1993

When I was compiling my list of predictions I completely forgot about this film which I saw earlier this year and I would have included it if it had crossed by mine. I am so glad that Spain have selected Summer 1993. It's a film debut, autobiographical, about a young orphaned girl going to live with relatives after her mother has passed away in the summer of 1993 (hence the title). This is one of those wonderful European films that captures childhood so well with beautifully detailed characterizations, particularly from the young cast members, and a real sense of time and place. Clearly a labour of love from the director, it stands a very good chance of making the shortlist with a nomination not out of the question. To be honest of what little I have seen of the films so far this is probably the most accessible to a wider audience.

I should mentioned I was wrong with my predictions for Georgia & Romania.

For Georgia I thought the wonderful My Happy Family, such a life and freedom experience would be selected but I understand that the selected Scary Mother is also very impressive.

For Romania I predicted Ana, mon amour based on the quality of the film itself and it warm reception at Berlin earlier this year. Perhaps the selectors were hesitant to submit a film and a rather explicit sex scene in. They have selected a film I have never heard of titled The Fixer.
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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Uri » Wed Sep 06, 2017 12:39 pm

bizarre wrote:Regarding the discussion of the raved Israeli film at Venice, Foxtrot, Israel's selection is always whatever film wins Best Picture at their Oscars equivalent. Foxtrot is nominated for that so if it wins it will be their selection and probably a shoo-in nominee.


Well, as I said earlier, it has a good chance of winning - the "leftist" Academy here would love nothing more than to vex our right wing, populist culture minister. And as of today, after actually seeing it, I can say that Foxtrot does look the part. It's gorgeously looking and very fff (film-festivals-friendly). It's also an awful film. It's a parody on what a soul searching Israeli film should look like. It's also a parody on how an Israeli film should appeal to European intellectuals who haven't the faintest idea about what Israel is like. The problem is that it seems to take itself seriously not knowing it's a parody. If I hadn't make myself clear enough - I loathes this film.

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Precious Doll » Wed Sep 06, 2017 7:54 am

Austria has submitted Happy End (another I have predicted), however I don't expect this to even make the shortlist.

It's minor Haneke and feels like the opening episode of a TV series, which is not a bad things because I was left wanting more but for the wrong reasons. Most of the characters (including Isabelle Huppert & Toby Jones) aren't really developed and the social themes get somewhat lost along the way. Still for a director whose three previous films, Hidden, The White Ribbon & Amour (I'll just pretend that his American re-make of Funny Games never existed) are major works of the highest order there was probably only one way to go artistically and that was down. How do you match Amour?
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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby bizarre » Tue Sep 05, 2017 3:04 pm

Thanks for your rundowns Precious. Have continued updating my post below with short synopses.

From the submissions so far, I'm prepared to eat my words on In the Fade being a committee selection possibility - of the rest, I think the most likely to make the shortlist are:
Hungary - On Body and Soul
Netherlands - Layla M.
Palestine - Wajib
Sweden - The Square
Switzerland - The Divine Order
Turkey - Ayla: The Daughter of War

Lots of topical films submitted so far, so we may see some first-time selections from smaller film industries.

Regarding the discussion of the raved Israeli film at Venice, Foxtrot, Israel's selection is always whatever film wins Best Picture at their Oscars equivalent. Foxtrot is nominated for that so if it wins it will be their selection and probably a shoo-in nominee.

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Precious Doll » Tue Sep 05, 2017 10:02 am

Thanks everyone.

Some good news. My mother went in for back surgery early and was released from hospital late this afternoon. She is able to work normally but for the next six weeks she is not to bend over, lift anything, move anything or move from side to side. By all accounts the surgery was a success. When I go over to see her tomorrow I'm go tell her that she finally got bangs for her bucks (meaning free medical treatment because of the taxes she has paid all her life).

Back on to nominees. Every day a few more are being added so rather then wait for the list to be completed and do a quick overview of the ones that I have seen:

The Square (Sweden) (I predicted this one)

This will make the shortlist. It will more than likely make the final five. A win, well let's just see. To access The Squares chances one need go back any further than last year when Toni Erdman made the shortlist, then the final 5 only to loose to a far more conventional (and boring) film.

The Square and Toni Erdman have a number of things in common. Some of their dialogue is in English, their are both long films (Toni Erdman is about 30 minutes longer), they are both comedies but they both have important social issues skimming around the narrative. You could quite easily move the nude dinner party from Toni Erdman and place it in The Square and it would be right at home. Likewise you could take the sex scene involving Elizabeth Moss and the condom out of The Square and plump it into Toni Erdman. It would all work. Their styles are different but both films in essence about the changing world around us. I don't think The Square is a shoe-in for winning without yet knowing what the other 4 nominated films will be.

In the Fade (Germany) (I predicted this one)

Really difficult material seemingly ripped from the worlds headlines anywhere in world. The film played with my mind in an interesting and disturbing manner. How far is too much when faced with the shocking death of your Muslim husband and son at the hands of neo-Nazis. It is really best to know as little about how things all pans out before see it and is does start to drag towards the end. It never hits the heights of The Edge of Heaven but is is a good film in its own way. Diane Kruger won best actress at Cannes and more so because there wasn't really anyone else to give the award to. This has a good chance to make the 9 and than the final 5. A win would not be out of the question but it is such flammable material.

On Body and Soul (Hungary (I predicted this one)

Whilst this film never took my fancy audiences have been lapping it up. It's a love story, but a most usual when at. Some will embrace others will shudder. It won the Golden Bear at Berlin and it the directors first film since she directed My 20th Century back in about 1990. This will has a good chance to get into the shortlist and a reasonable chance of a final five placement.

Tom of Finland (Finland) (I predicted The Other Side of Hope)

I did read somewhere quiet recently that The Other Side of Hope would not be Finlands selection because Aki Kaurismäki would not participate in any of the promotion for the film in relation to an Oscar submission. So they went for Tom of Vanilla, oh sorry I meant to say Tom of Finland but really the whole story is so tastefully done when it was screaming for an candid version of events. For this very reason it may find itself in the final five but I hope not. If we are going to have a gay film nominated in this category I prefer it for 1) something of much better quality 2) somethings that is out there pushing boundaries and airy fairing like this film. Yeah, it's watchable but completely unremarkable.

A Taxi Driver (South Korea)

This has proven a huge hit in South Korea and its not hard to see why this true story has resonated with Korean audiences. However, for Western audiences it a very different experience and one that doesn't travel outside the comforts of home. A doubt this will make the shortlist though I wouldn't mind if it did if only to make up for all those wonderful Korean films that have been overlooked over the years.
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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby bizarre » Tue Aug 29, 2017 2:49 pm

Sorry to hear about what you're going through, Precious. Hope you find some peace and wellness soon :(

Have updated the post with Ukraine's submission.

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Precious Doll » Sun Aug 27, 2017 6:02 pm

Thanks dan frank,

I have been liaising with my doctor to reduce the amounts but have ended back on my old dosage. Once this period has resolved I will be trying again - and never I never take with with alcohol. I thankfully don't take painkillers and have no need. Have seen and heard horror stories with those.
"I have no interest in all of that. I find that all tabloid stupidity" Woody Allen, The Guardian, 2014, in response to his adopted daughter's allegations.

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby danfrank » Sun Aug 27, 2017 11:28 am

I'm sorry to hear about your mother and the stress you've been under. Back problems can be truly hellish. I hope your mother's surgery is a success. Precious, I don't know what type of sleeping pills you're taking but please be careful and don't hesitate to get some medical help if it gets out of control. It is extremely easy to become dependent on them. I worry when I hear you say you took a handful. You are one of my favorite members of this board. I hope life gets better for you soon.

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Precious Doll » Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:51 am

Goodness, I re-read what I had written about In the Fade and a lot of it was garbled nonsense. I have revised my post so that it makes more sense.

I had taken a handful of sleeping pills one hour earlier and was extremely foggy at the time I made the post. Yes, I have a sleeping pill addiction that I've had for years and in stressful times I do take a higher dose. I have been having a very particularly rough time over the last 6 weeks or so as my mother has been incapacitated due to severe back problems which has left her barely able to walk. I have never seen her in such a bad way and this has come as something as a shock to me. She has always been so stoic and active so to see her in such away for even this amount of time has deeply disturbed me. Though these issues started in May last year only to clear up and than return late last year, I'm kicking myself for not encouraged or demanding she see a specialist about it until April/May this year. Things took an even nastier turn for me about 6 weeks ago which was ironically the appointment with the specialist took place.

An MRI on her lower back showed extensive degeneration which starts to happen to everyone after the age of 50 (and for some unlucky souls it can be earlier than that).

I nearly cancelled my trip to the Melbourne Film Festival and frankly would not have gone this year if my partner and me hadn't already booked tickets and accommodation. I basically made emergency plans for her in the event she ran into trouble as I was gone for 2 weeks and thankfully nothing came up during that time.

I try to spend a few hours with her every day and thankfully I am long term leave from work anyway so there hasn't been an issue there. As my leave is coming to end at the end of the year, my initial plan was to retire (I'd basically than be earning more that I earn working) but now part of me wants to return to work as I feel I have barely done anything of use for the last 9 months.

She is having surgery next Friday and hopefully everything will work out fine from there. This whole period has really opened my eyes in a way that cinema never can.
"I have no interest in all of that. I find that all tabloid stupidity" Woody Allen, The Guardian, 2014, in response to his adopted daughter's allegations.

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Okri » Sat Aug 26, 2017 7:10 pm

Mister Tee wrote:
bizarre wrote:Yeah, what Precious said - topical, but it was received poorly at Cannes, Kruger's prize came out of one of the least competitive fields in recent memory and even then was a bit of a surprise (for me at least). That being said, quality counts for less in this category than any other so I'm prepared to eat my words.

It's probably close among foreign film, make-up and song for "category with most utterly random nominations".


I think song takes it, especially since it's the most useless category AMPAS has.

ETA: I really like Akin's work, even The Cut.

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Mister Tee » Sat Aug 26, 2017 3:34 pm

bizarre wrote:Yeah, what Precious said - topical, but it was received poorly at Cannes, Kruger's prize came out of one of the least competitive fields in recent memory and even then was a bit of a surprise (for me at least). That being said, quality counts for less in this category than any other so I'm prepared to eat my words.

It's probably close among foreign film, make-up and song for "category with most utterly random nominations".

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby bizarre » Sat Aug 26, 2017 3:13 pm

Yeah, what Precious said - topical, but it was received poorly at Cannes, Kruger's prize came out of one of the least competitive fields in recent memory and even then was a bit of a surprise (for me at least). That being said, quality counts for less in this category than any other so I'm prepared to eat my words.

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Precious Doll » Sat Aug 26, 2017 9:31 am

I think bizarre is going by the poor critical reaction to In the Fade at Cannes which has resulted in a 42% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Sure, Diane Kruger won the Best Actress award by there was little competition on offer. Of the 19 films in competition, I Have already seen 14 and the only performances I would consider award worthy were Kruger in In the Fade in Min-hee Kim in The Day After are the only two performance any discerning jury would vote for.

In the Fade has come at a bad point in light of recent events in Charlottesville and other parts of the world with groups or people protesting and attacking other people for the noting more than the colour of their skin or their ethnicity. Fatih Akin's direction is strong and the film is constantly relentless. The film does head off into a direction what I found deeply problematic and it might just be better if the film gets over over. It is the sought of film that is opening up old wounds and very widely at that and it is not a remotely comfortably viewing experience. It is definitely a film work seeking out and holds with a grip but at times felt so savage and barbaric. Certainly worth viewing with knowing as little as possible about it's narrative.
Last edited by Precious Doll on Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby Okri » Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:41 pm

bizarre, the description of In the Fade makes it sound way too topical to be ignored. Why do you think it would be?

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Re: List of submissions to the 90th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film (coming soon)

Postby bizarre » Fri Aug 25, 2017 3:45 pm

Here is the final list of submissions:

Afghanistan - "A Letter to the President" (Roya Sadat) - A female government official is imprisoned when she defends a woman from punishment by village lords, and writes the president for help. Surprising choice over another female filmmaker from the country (Shahrbanoo Sadat with 'Wolf and Sheep')
Albania - "Daybreak" (Gentian Koçi) - A young mother living in poverty takes on a caregiver role for a very old, ill woman, and finds that her own survival depends on that of her ward's
Algeria - "Road to Istanbul" (Rachid Bouchareb) - A woman sets off to find her daughter, who joined ISIS in Syria. Algeria had announced that it may not be able to submit this year, so this is an 11th-hour decision
Argentina - "Zama" (Lucrecia Martel) - Set in pre-independence Argentina in the 18th century, a Spanish Crown officer embarks on a dangerous mission to track down a bandit in the wilderness
Armenia - "Yeva" (Anahit Abad) - A young woman flees to a village in disguise with her daughter to escape her tyrannical in-laws after her husband's death
Australia - "The Space Between" (Ruth Borgobello) - An Italian-language family drama about a successful chef who travels to Northern Italy to visit his ailing father.
Austria - "Happy End" (Michael Haneke) - An upper-crust family deteriorates against the backdrop of the European refugee crisis. Haneke's latest, middlingly-received at Cannes
Azerbaijan - "Pomegranate Orchard" (Ilgar Najaf) - prodigal-son-returns drama inspired by 'The Cherry Orchard'
Bangladesh - "The Cage" (Akram Khan) - A last-minute change in submission from Jahangir Alam Sumon's musical rom-com "Shona Bondhu", this film is a government-funded production about migration following the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947
Belgium - "Racer and the Jailbird' (Michaël R. Roskam) - romance between a gangster and a racing driver starring Matthias Schoenaerts and Adèle Exarchopoulos. Venice out-of-comp premiere
Bolivia - "Dark Skull" (Kiro Russo) - An atmospheric, abstract drama set in the world of tin miners in Western Bolivia
Bosnia & Herzegovina - "Men Don't Cry" (Alen Drljević) - A group of Yugoslav War vets doing group therapy
Brazil - "Bingo: The King of the Mornings" (Daniel Rezende) - A biopic about the actor who played Bozo the Clown in Brazil
Bulgaria - "Glory" (Kristina Grozeva & Petar Valchanov) - A railway trackman notifies his discovery of a large amount of money to the authorities, who use it as a PR stunt to deflect from a brewing government corruption scandal
Cambodia - "First They Killed My Father" (Angelina Jolie) - A true story about a 5 year-old girl who is drafted as a child soldier during the Khmer Rouge years in Cambodia. Based on the memoir by Loung Ung
Canada - "Hochelaga, Land of Souls" (François Girard) - A dramatisation of several centuries of Québécois history, framed through an archaeological dig prompted by the opening of a sinkhole in the modern day
Chile - "A Fantastic Woman" (Sebastián Lelio) - After her older boyfriend dies suddenly, a trans woman in Chile must fight for recognition of their relationship from both the law and his family. Has also generated big buzz for its lead actress Daniela Vega, who could be someone to watch for a nomination regardless of whether this is shortlisted
China - "Wolf Warrior 2" (Wu Jing) - A very surprising choice from a slate of much higher-profile (and more 'prestige'-palatable) films, this is an action-thriller sequel about a mercenary for hire who is assigned to protect medical workers against insurgents in an "unnamed African country" (wish they'd stop doing 'unnamed African country' tropes in films)
Colombia - "Guilty Men" (Iván Gaona) - Set in 2005, a trucker plays a cat-and-mouse game with a guerrilla paramilitary group while trying to connect with his lover
Costa Rica - "The Sound of Things" (Ariel Escalante) - A woman reeling from the deaths of three of her loved ones finds a reason to keep going when a former friend asks for her help managing an illness
Croatia - "Quit Staring at My Plate" (Hana Jušić) - A withdrawn woman gets a chance to come out of her shell when her abusive father has a stroke
Czech Republic - "Ice Mother" (Bohdan Sláma) - A 67 year-old mother and grandmother goes through a 3/4-life crisis
Denmark - "You Disappear" (Peter Schønau Fog) - The story of a middle-aged couple whose lives are rocked when the husband is diagnosed with a brain tumour. Stars Trine Dyrholm and the late Michael Nyqvist, who died this year
Dominican Republic - "Woodpeckers" (José María Cabral) - Inmates in adjacent women's and men's prisons communicate by code, sparking a 'long-distance' romance
Ecuador - "Alba" (Ana Cristina Barragán) - An 11 year-old girl must move in with her father when her mother falls ill. The two must confront their distant relationship head-on
Egypt - "Sheikh Jackson" (Amr Salama) - A conservative imam with a private adoration for Michael Jackson spirals into a personal crisis after hearing the news of his idol's death. Sounds interesting!
Estonia - "November" (Rainer Sarnet) - A folkloric fantasy-romance about a peasant girl and a village boy in a 19th century Estonia populated by fairytale creatures
Finland - "Tom of Finland" (Dome Karukoski) - A biopic of the famed and influential gay erotic artist Tom of Finland
France - "BPM (Beats per Minute)" (Robin Campillo) - Grand Prix winner at Cannes this year, it tells the story of a group of AIDS activists working with ACT UP in the early 90s
Georgia - "Scary Mother" (Ana Urushadze) - A psychological thriller about a middle-class housewife who seeks an escape through writing an erotic novel
Germany - "In the Fade" (Fatih Akın) - A white woman seeks to avenge the murder of her Kurdish husband and son by neo-Nazis. Best Actress prize at Cannes for Diane Kruger
Greece - "Amerika Square" (Yannis Sakaridis) - A racist old man and a young tattoo artist in Athens find themselves thrown into conflict when a Syrian refugee enters their lives
Haiti - "Ayiti Mon Amour" (Guetty Felin) - An allegorical drama about the Haitian past and present centred around four characters living in a small, impoverished village. Haiti's first submission, and by a female director no least. Has had some great festival receptions
Honduras - "Morazán" (Hispando Durón) - The biography of a Honduran freedom fighter and pan-central-american revotionary, Francisco Morazán
Hong Kong - "Mad World" (Wong Chun) - A former financial analyst suffering from bipolar disorder is released from a mental institution into the care of his truck-driver father
Hungary - "On Body and Soul" (Enyedi Ildikó) - A man and a woman working in a slaughterhouse find an otherworldly romantic connection with each other through a recurring dream they both experience. Winner of the Golden Bear at Berlin this year
Iceland - "Under the Tree" (Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson) - A quartet of neighbours find themselves in an escalating conflict over a tree that borders their properties. This black comedy got strong reviews at TIFF and has been picked up by Magnolia for a US release
India - "Newton" (Amit V Masurkar) - A black comedy about a government clerk tasked with holding fair elections in an Indian region beset by guerrilla forces
Indonesia - "Turah" (Wicaksono Wisnu Legowo) - Details the lives of several families living in a poor village in Central Java
Iran - "Breath" (Narges Abyar) - A young girl uses daydreaming and fantasy to cope with the tumultuous years between the Iranian Revolution and the Iran-Iraq War
Iraq - "The Dark Wind" (Hussein Hassan) - Love story set during the ISIS seizure of Sinjar and their genocide of the Yazidi people
Ireland - "Song of Granite" (Pat Collins) - A biography of Irish folk songer Joe Heaney
Israel - "Foxtrot" (Samuel Maoz) - Caused a sensation at Venice this year. Tells parallel stories of an IDF soldier who is killed and of his parents in the wake of his death
Italy - "A Ciambra" (Jonas Carpignano) - A 14 year-old Romani boy in Calabria searches for his older brother after the brother disappears. Well-received at Cannes' Directors' Fortnight this year
Japan - "Her Love Boils Bathwater" (Ryōta Nakano) - A mother and housewife discovers she has terminal cancer and tries to work through her personal bucket list. Winner of the last Best Actress prize at the Japanese equivalent of the Oscars, for Rie Miyazawa.
Kazakhstan - "The Road to Mother" (Akan Satayev) - A mother walks to the outskirts of her village every dawn and dusk for twenty years in the hopes of meeting her son, missing in the wars of the 1930s
Kenya - "Kati Kati" (Mbithi Masya) - A young girl finds herself in a fantastical purgatory where she meets a variety of colourful characters
Kosovo - "Unwanted" (Edon Rizvanolli) - A Kosovar mother and son living in exile in the Netherlands after the Balkans War deal with social and personal crises
Kyrgyzstan - "Centaur" (Aktan Abdykalykov) - A former horse thief living in a Bishkek slum is given the opportunity for one more job, carrying with it the promise of local stardom
Laos - "Dearest Sister" (Mattie Do) - A supernatural horror film about a village woman who moves to the city to care for her progressively blind cousin, who can speak to ghosts. The main character exploits her cousin's gift for personal gain. Laos' first ever submission in this category
Latvia - "The Chronicles of Melanie" (Viesturs Kairišs) - A WWII-set drama about a mother and son fighting to survive in a Siberian gulag
Lebanon - "The Insult" (Ziad Doueiri) - A Lebanese Christian and the Palestinian refugee he hires to do home maintenance have a violent altercation that unravels into a nationally-covered court case. Recently premiered at Venice to solid reviews
Lithuania - "Frost" (Šarūnas Bartas) - Two Lithuanian aid workers travel through the war-torn Donbass region of Ukraine. Don't know what the point of submitting this was because there is no realm of possibility where the average Academy voter would respond to a Bartas film (I'm a pretty hardcore slow-cinema aficionado and even I have issues with his stuff), not to mention this one got particularly poor reviews
Luxembourg - "Barrage" (Laura Schroeder) - Three generations of a family find conflict and reconciliation over one turbulent weekend. Starring real-life mother-and-daughter duo Isabelle Huppert and Lolita Chammah (who have co-starred before in Marc Fitoussi's enjoyably 'Cocapabana' - worth it for a great comedic Huppert performance and character)
Mexico - "Tempestad" (Tatiana Huezo) - A documentary following the stories of two women who survived human trafficking in Mexico
Mongola - "The Children of Genghis" (Zolbayar Dorj) - The sons of a legendary horse trainer fight to take up his legacy with escalating results
Morocco - "Razzia" (Nabil Ayouch) - A 'kaleidoscopic drama' following five lives across 30 years of Moroccan history, all centred on the leadup to and the reverberating effects of the violent street protests of 2015 in Casablanca
Mozambique - "The Train of Salt and Sugar" (Licínio Azevedo) - The story of ordinary people fighting to survive in the civil war of the 1980s
Nepal - "White Sun" (Deepak Rauniyar) - Two brothers, who fought on opposite sides in the Nepali Civil War, return home to bury their dead father
Netherlands - "Layla M." (Mijke de Jong) - A Muslim woman in Amsterdam is radicalised by her husband but becomes disillusioned after they move into a fundamentalist cell in Jordan
New Zealand - "One Thousand Ropes" (Tusi Tamasese) - A supernatural family drama about a father and daughter reconnecting over their shared baggage
Norway - "Thelma" (Joachim Trier) - A student in Oslo discovers she has supernatural powers
Pakistan - "Saawan" (Farhan Alam) - A disabled child fights for survival in the hostile deserts of Pakistan. This makes two Urdu-language submissions this year, after the UK's
Palestine - "Wajib" (Annemarie Jacir) - A father sets off on a road trip to deliver his daughter's wedding invitations alongside his estranged son. Stars real-life father and son Mohammad Bakri and Saleh Bakri
Panama - "Beyond Brotherhood" (Arianne Benedetti) - Two siblings fight to survive living on the streets
Paraguay - "Los buscadores" (Juan Carlos Maneglia & Tana Schembori) - A news boy discovers a Paraguayan War-era treasure map amongst his grandfather's belongings and decides to investigate the location of the purported treasure, now an embassy
Peru - "Rosa Chumbe" (Jonatan Relayze) - A policewoman cares for her grandson after her daughter steals money and abandons the baby
Philippines - "Birdshot" (Mikhail Red) - The daughter of a wildlife sanctuary caretaker accidentally kills an endangered Philippine eagle, leading to a game of cat-and-mouse with local authorities
Poland - "Spoor" (Agnieszka Holland) - An elderly woman living in isolation witnesses a series of murders, but the authorities refuse to believe her. Strong reviews at Berlin (for a Holland film), this could be a shortlist contender
Portugal - "Saint George" (Marco Martins) - Set during the height of the GFC in Portugal, an unemployed boxer must take a dangerous job with a debt-collection agency in order to support his family
Romania - "The Fixer" (Adrian Sitaru) - A journalist enters murky ethical territory while covering the story of an underage prostitute in Romania's capital
Russia - "Loveless" (Andrei Zvyagintsev) - A couple in the midst of divorce are thrown for a loop when their 12 year-old son goes missing. Won the Jury Prize at Cannes this year
Senegal - "Félicité" (Alain Gomis) - Good reviews at Berlin this year, this kaleidoscopic music-infused drama is about a bar singer fighting to raise funds for her ill son's medical care
Serbia - "Requiem for Mrs. J" (Bojan Vuletić) - A black-comedy about a widow planning to commit suicide on the anniversary of her husband's death
Singapore - "Pop Aye" (Kirsten Tan) - A big-city architect encounters an elephant he'd befriended in his childhood and sets off on a journey with his old pal back to his ancestral village
Slovakia - "The Line" (Peter Bebjak) - Set in 2007 before Slovakia joined the Schengen Zone, follows the exploits of a gang of smugglers moving contraband from Ukraine into the EU
Slovenia - "The Miner" (Hanna Antonina Wojcik-Slak) - A miner discovers a WWII mass grave, and must face his own conscience to make a decision after his boss pressures him to keep quiet
South Africa - "The Wound" (John Trengove) - Tracks the close relationship between two men undergoing a Xhosa initiation ritual
South Korea - "A Taxi Driver" (Jang Hoon) - An everyman taxi driver accidentally becomes involved with a reporter covering the events of the Gwangju Uprising in 1980. Stars Song Kang-ho and Thomas Kretschmann
Spain - "Summer 1993" (Carla Simón) - A young orphan girl goes to live with her uncle after her parents die of AIDS
Sweden - "The Square" (Ruben Östlund) - Social satire set in the European art world. Palme d'Or winner at Cannes this year
Switzerland - "The Divine Order" (Petra Biondina Volpe) - Centred around a women's rights activist fighting for suffrage in 1971 Switzerland (Switzerland was the last Western republic to grant women's suffrage)
Syria - "Little Gandhi" (Sam Kadi) - Syria has a deep and rich anti-establishment film history but censorship and risk of detainment and death is severe for filmmakers who attempt to expose government failings and atrocities, so it's INCREDIBLY surprising that their Film & Television Board submitted this documentary about the murder of a peace activist and revolutionary symbol from the 2011 protests
Taiwan - "Small Talk" (Huang Hui-chen) - A documentary about the troubled relationship between the director and her estranged mother, a lesbian Taoist priestess who neglected her throughout her childhood
Thailand - "By the Time It Gets Dark" (Anocha Suwichakornpong) - An experimental political film about the production of a movie about a 1976 military massacre of student protestors in Bangkok
Tunisia - "The Last of Us" (Ala Eddine Slim) - An avant-garde fantasy about a refugee who has otherworldly experiences while trekking through the desert. No dialogue
Turkey - "Ayla: The Daughter of War" (Can Ulkay) - A Turkish soldier fighting in the Korean war becomes a surrogate father to an orphaned Korean girl
Ukraine - "Black Level" (Valentyn Vasyanovych) - A wedding photographer suffers a midlife crisis as his family falls apart
United Kingdom - "My Pure Land" (Sarmad Masud) - A mother and two daughters in Pakistan must defend their land from a band of 200 bandits
Uruguay - "Another History of the World" (Guillermo Casanova) - A pair of friends are torn apart when one is arrested for political dissent. The other must fight for his freedom
Venezuela - "El Inca" (Ignacio Castillo Cottin) - A story about the boxer Edwin Valero who committed suicide after killing his wife. This is an interesting and politicised choice in the wake of Maduro's attacks on the judiciary due to having been pulled from theatres in Venezuela due to a federal judge siding with Valero's family in a lawsuit against the filmmakers.
Vietnam - "Father and Son" (Lương Đình Dũng) - A poor boy with an incurable illness and his blind father live by a river, where the magic of nature and the pain of illness are examined from a child's point of view

Eligible countries that did not submit:
Bhutan - Bhutan has not made any official statements yet - they haven't submitted since 1999 but were apparently readying a submission committee specifically for the well-received film "Hema Hema: Sing Me a Song While I Wait" by Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche, though it was unexpectedly and controversially banned domestically by the Bhutanese government and will no longer meet the submission criteria, so it's unclear whether they'll still go forward with a submission for another film.
Ghana - Poor Ghana was very excited to submit for the first time this year, but didn't end up making a decision due to the paucity of contenders.
Macedonia - Macedonia has decided not to submit this year.
Montenegro - Montenegro announced that it did not receive enough qualifying submissions and has decided not to put forward a film for contention this year.
United Arab Emirates - The UAE was set to submit for the first time, too, but ended up not sending a candidate for some reason.

First time submitters are Haiti, Honduras, Laos, Mozambique, Senegal and Syria (??).


So far, 26 of the submissions are directed by women, which may be a record in this category:
Afghanistan
Argentina
Armenia
Australia
Bulgaria
Cambodia
Croatia
Ecuador
Georgia
Haiti
Hungary
Iran
Laos
Luxembourg
Mexico
Netherlands
Palestine
Panama
Paraguay
Poland
Singapore
Slovenia
Spain
Switzerland
Taiwan
Thailand
Last edited by bizarre on Thu Oct 05, 2017 4:26 pm, edited 49 times in total.


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