A record 75 countries entered the foreign language category this year, and a record 16 submitted films directed by women. I saw 70 of the 75 entries. Here are my comments on the five nominees, as well some non-nominees that I consider noteworthy.
I have nothing against Iron Man 3, which happens to be a very entertaining film, but I like variety in my movie diet, which is why I'm happy to recommend some smaller pictures that are now making their way across the country.
More than four months before the 85th Annual Academy Awards airs, the awards ceremony has already broken a record for the number of countries that have submitted features for consideration in the foreign-language-film category.
As Big Hollywood continues to make fewer films, festivals like Cannes mean more and more. So stay tuned, because the latest flick from the Twilight babe and the new one from the The Lucky One hunk are here.
Jiro Dreams of Sushi is balanced between the story of a remote and complex father and capturing the fine art of making sushi and photographing it in the immediacy of its freshness. It is also filled with surprises -- like watching how someone gets a live octopus into a plastic bag!
In the span of his six-decade career, Ennio Morricone has scored over 500 films and television shows, including Fistful of Dollars (1964,) The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (1967,) and Danger: Diabolik (1968.)
I saw 50 of the 63 films entered in the Best Foreign Language Film category and I am happy to report that this was an exceptionally good year. If no single masterpiece stood out, there were a couple dozen good films that I would recommend for film fans of various tastes.
This must be a bittersweet week for filmmaker Nadine Labaki. Her latest film Where Do We Go Now? (W Halla' La Wein?) is being screened to sold-out audiences at Sundance, and yet it failed to get into the Best Foreign Film race for this year's Academy Awards.