The uphill battle of Bwakaw—the Philippines’ entry to the 85th Oscar Awards best foreign language film category—to give the country’s its first ever nomination got a tremendous boost when Time Magazine included it in the list of 10 must-see films in the last New York Film Festival.
The Eddie Garcia-starrer, directed by Jun Robles Lana, was selected by a special committee of the Film Academy of the Philippines as our entry in next year’s Oscar Awards.
The Time Magazine citation came in the wake of good reviews when Bwakaw was shown in the Toronto International Film Festival.
The New York Film Festival was held from September 28 to October 14 with 33 films participating. A number of these films included at least six or more which had been submitted to the 85th Oscar Awards.
The Time Magazine 10-must see films are the following:
Noah Baumbach’s “Frances Ha” is about a twenty-something dancer in Brooklyn with her overwhelming desire to redefine herself over as she risks separating from the people to whom she clings for support.
David Chase’s “Not Fade Away” is about a teenage Jersey boy dreaming of being a rock and roll star as the Beatles and Rolling Stones take over the chart and airwaves in 1964.
Michael Haneke’s “Amour”, which won the Palm D’Or at this year’s Cannes, is about married retired music teachers, both in their 80s. The wife suffers a debilitating stroke and the couple’s daughter returns to provide solace and comfort.
Jun Robles Lana’s “Bwakaw” is about the unlikely friendship between a grumpy old gay man and a stray dog who keeps him company while he awaits his date with mortality.
Ang Lee’s “Life of Pi” is based on the award-winning fantastical novel of Yamm Martel about a boy and a Bengal tiger marooned on a boat for 277 days.
Noémie Lvovsky’s ”Camille Rewinds” is a twist on the comedy of remarriage which transposes Francis Ford Coppola’s Peggy Sue Got Married to present France. It is about Camille who’s in the throes of divorcing her husband of 25 years who passes out drunk and wakes up a high school senior in the mid 1980s.
Brian de Palma’s “Passion”, which premiered in Venice last month, is based on Alain Corneau’s French 2010 thriller Love Crime.
Sally Potter’s “Ginger and Rosa” is about two teenage girls in 1962 London who have been best friends from way back but are driven apart by a scandalous betrayal in an era of all too real fears of nuclear destruction.
Paolo and Vittorio Taviani’s Caesar Must Die” is about a performance of William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in a high-security Roman prison Robert Zemeckis’ “Flight” is about an investigation of a pilot’s emergency landing which saves everyone aboard a plane which leads to a troubling discovery that the pilot had alcohol in his system during the flight which might land him in prison.
It is interesting to note that Bwakaw, Amour and Caesar Must Die have all been submitted to the Oscar Awards by their respective countries.
Three other films submitted to the Oscar’s foreign language film category which also participated in the New York Film Festival were Chile’s No, Belgium’s Our Children and Israel’s Fill the Void.
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