This morning the finalists to the upcoming Oscars were announced and the Alfonso Cuarón-directed “Gravity” received ten nominations in categories like Best Picture and Best Director. While the Academy honored the Mexican-born Cuarón and his daring stroller set in outer space, films from Latin American were snubbed and will not be up for the Oscars.
Despite strong submissions like a Peruvian film set in a stark Lima of the future or an uplifting drama examining a Chilean divorcee’s plunge into romance, no movies from the Americas made it to the shortlist for Best Foreign Language Film. The Uruguayan movie “Anina” was wonderfully drawn and had a charming plot but was not chosen as a finalist for Best Animated Feature Film.
Similar to “Heli,” Mexico’s pick for Best Foreign Language Film, “Narco Cultura” examines the death and destruction caused by drug violence in that country. Yet the documentary differs in that it also looks at the appeal that the drug culture has via musicians and their narcocorrido songs. The film depicts the glorification of drug traffickers as modern day Robin Hoods through music with lyrics like “With an AK-47 and a bazooka on my shoulder/ Cross my path and I’ll chop your head off/ We’re bloodthirsty, crazy and we like to kill.” This is contrasted with the testimony of a Ciudad Juarez crime scene investigator who has attended the funerals of several of his colleagues murdered while working by drug gangs.
Below the page break is the trailer to “Narco Cultura”, which was not selected as a finalist in the top documentary category at the Oscars:
Video Source – Cinedigm via YouTube
Online Sources – VOXXI; The Latin Americanist; imdb.com