Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Nuestro Cine: Cleaning Up

We begin our look this week at some of the Latin American nominees for the upcoming Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.

“The Cleaner” (“El Limpiador”) was chosen last week as Peru’s pick for top foreign language film at the Oscars. 

According to the Peruvian Ministry of Culture, “The Cleaner” was selected “for its original proposal of an apocalyptic Lima, where loneliness and strain are shown through an effective use of cinematographic elements, expressing a city that slowly fades out.”  This can be seen in the film’s trailer that shows gray colors, hushed vocals and slow movements by the protagonists:

The sci-fi drama focuses on the ties between a forensic cleaner and an orphaned boy he takes care of.  Both of them develop a friendship despite the devastation caused by a mysterious epidemic in Lima.

“The Cleaner” is the directorial debut of Adrian Saba and it has been featured in several international film festivals.  It made its world premiere at the San Sebastian Film Festival, where it won a special mention of the New Directors Award. 

2009’s “The Milk of Sorrow” (“La Teta Asustada”) was the only Peruvian film to have ever received an Oscar nomination for top foreign language film.  (It would lose the award to Argentine film “The Secret in Their Eyes” (“El secreto de sus ojos”).)

October 1st was the deadline for submissions for the top foreign language film at the Oscars.  In January, a nine-film shortlist will be chosen followed by the five finalists.  The Academy Awards will be presented on March 2nd.

Speaking of the San Sebastian Film Festival, our next “Nuestro Cine” entry will look at the controversy surrounding film that received top prize at that competition.

Video Source– YouTube via user kviff

Online Sources – Peru This Week; The Latin Americanist

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