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John Villeneuve

Awards Daily contributing writer

I Killed My Mother, Too

by John Villeneuve Full disclosure. Being a highly functional, life-long sufferer of bipolarity (hence the appearance of the conjunction “too” in the title), I may be the wrong person to be reviewing Canadian director, Xavier Dolan’s semi-autobiographical debut film, J’ai tu√© ma m√®re (I Killed My Mother), a movie with ...

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Cuba’s Big and Loud What-the-F**k???

by John Villeneuve Either Cuba’s submission to the Academy is a practical joke by some merry pranksters, or there is some hidden meaning, or implications, in this car-crash that has eluded me. Whatever the scenario may be, Fallen Gods (Los dioses rotos) is one of the strangest and most bewildering ...

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An Interview With an AMPAS Voter

by John Villeneuve Earlier today, I was granted a short tête-à-tête with an AMPAS member who was gracious enough to put aside some time to answer assorted questions about this years Oscar race. In particular, the Foreign Film category. Though this member did not violate any rules by speaking with ...

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Oh, Such Sweet Sorrow

by John Villeneuve Winner of the Golden Bear at the recent Berlin Film Festival, The Milk of Sorrow (La teta asustada) is Peru’s offering to this years Academy Awards. And what a gift it is. What lurks in the margins of this film is the conflict in the 1980’s between ...

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Three Chance China

Due to China’s complicated history it has the enviable (at least most countries would agree) advantage of submitting three films for Foreign Film consideration. One from China, one from Hong Kong, and one from Taiwan. As I am sure everyone knows, on July 1st, 1997, Hong Kong, and its sovereignty, ...

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The No-Good, the Bad, the Ugly, and the Truly Putrid

by John Villeneuve Every year some painfully half-baked, ill-conceived or inept films get submitted by countries from around the world for consideration in the Best Foreign Film category. However, this year seems to have more than usual. Which begs the question, if you don’t have a respectable film to present, ...

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Samson, Delilah and Warwick Thorton

by John Villeneuve Much like Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire, Samson & Delilah proves to be an endurance test in misery due to poverty and marginalization. That is not to say that the journey is not worth taking. It is. The naturalistic presence of non-actors, Rowan McNamara ...

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The Secret in Her, His, Their Eyes

by John Villeneuve During the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s Argentina endured a multitude of military coups d‚Äô√©tat (minus the short Per√≥n period that lasted a few months in 1973-1974). Under the stronghold of the military junta, corruption was rife, no more so than in the judiciary, where loyalty to the ...

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Will Mother Make It?

by John Villeneuve Generally, it is difficult to surmise what the academy voters will choose amongst the foreign films submitted to them, because, more often than not, they pick films without controversy, without edge, and without balls. In other words, movies which are not critically acclaimed, but films they can ...

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Letters to Father Jacob: Paper Thin?

by John Villeneuve Letters to Father Jacob is a film I would have missed at The Vancouver Film Festival, had it not been submitted by Finland for consideration for the Best Foreign Language category. Directed by Klaus Härö, with economy, but extreme restraint, this Scandinavian film is slight and featherweight, ...

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Police, Adjective. Becomes a Noun

by John Villeneuve Awards Daily contributing writer Much like its title, Police, Adjective. is a kind of pastiche broken up into a series of linguistic challenges, resulting in a revitalized, yet, comic perception of the world around us. Our protagonist is a cop who’s mandate is to observe a young, ...

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