1 Feb 2017

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Last week the Oscar nominations were announced. La La Land received a record tying 14 nominations. Which kind of shows the ridiculousness of the event. I don't doubt it's a good movie, I'm looking forward to seeing it myself, but it suggests a superiority that I doubt is justified. But as always, judging movies is highly subjective.
One area where I think this Hollywood marketing event is still useful to draw attention to are categories like Foreign language film, Animated feature and Documentary feature. Some trailers for the latter will be added in a later entry. You can find trailers for almost all nominations at apple. Many scripts can be found here.

Best Foreign language film:
Land of Mine - Under sandet     HD720p 85MB
War drama from Denmark, based on real events. As World War II comes to an end, a group of German POWs, boys rather than men, are captured by the Danish army and forced to engage in a deadly task—to defuse and clear land mines from the Danish coastline. With little or no training, the boys soon discover that the war is far from over.

A Man Called Ove - En man som heter Ove     HD720p 80MB
Comedic drama from Sweden about Ove who is the quintessential angry old man next door. An isolated retiree with strict principles and a short fuse, who spends his days enforcing block association rules that only he cares about, and visiting his wife’s grave, Ove has given up on life. Enter a boisterous young family next door who accidentally flattens Ove’s mailbox while moving in and earning his special brand of ire. Yet from this inauspicious beginning an unlikely friendship forms and we come to understand Ove’s past happiness and heartbreaks.
By far the most conventional of the nominees. It is an enjoyable watch.

Tanna     HD720p 79MB
Romantic drama from Australia, set on the lush tropical island of Tanna, the conviction of two star-crossed lovers will change their tribe's culture forever. Wawa, being readied for the ceremony that will recognize her as a grown woman, is in love with the handsome grandson of the tribal chief. When, as part of an effort to resolve island hostilities, Wawa is betrothed to a man from another tribe, she must choose between loyalty to her clan and her own heart.

Toni Erdmann     HD720p 73MB
Previously posted, the trailer for the comedic drama from Germany about a father who tries to reconnect with his daughter.

The Salesman - Forushande     HD720p 85MB
Also previously posted, the trailer for this relationship movie from Iran. Until recently it looked like Toni Erdmann was the front runner. But political considerations may tip the scales towards The Salesman.

US trailer versions for the two non-US movies that received Best Animated feature nominations:
My Life as a Zucchini - Ma vie de courgette     HD720p 67MB
Trailer with English voices (among them Will Forte, Nick Offerman, Ellen Page, Amy Sedaris) for this stop-motion animated movie from Switzerland. After his mother's sudden death, Zucchini is befriended by a police officer, Raymond, who accompanies him to his new foster home, filled with other orphans his age. At first he struggles to find his place in this at times strange and hostile environment. But with Raymond's help and his newfound friends, Zucchini eventually learns to trust and love, as he searches for a new family of his own.

The Red Turtle - La tortue rouge     HD720p 75MB
Without any dialogue, through the story of a man shipwrecked on a tropical island inhabited by turtles, crabs and birds, the movie recounts the milestones in the life of a human being.
Apparently, Studio Ghibli sent director Michael Dudok de Wit an email with two questions: if they could distribute his short film 'Father and Daughter' in Japan, and if he would make a feature film for them. Dudok de Wit replied answering the first question and saying he did not understand the second, as he was baffled and could not believe it.

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