Iran’s ‘A Separation’ latest to enter Oscar race

Posted by · 8:15 am · September 12th, 2011

I’d say this was a no-brainer, but one should never underestimate the ability of countries to shoot themselves in the foot when selecting their submissions for the foreign-language Oscar. Happily, Iran has done no such thing, picking Asghar Farhadi’s critically beloved festival sensation “A Separation” as their pony this year.

It’s a choice that I suspect will pay off handsomely. I’ll be astonished if the film doesn’t at least make the January shortlist — it should play well enough with general voters, but the executive committee should swoop in if it doesn’t. It’s not too much of a stretch to imagine this smart, humanistic marital drama going all the way to the podium, particularly with Sony Pictures Classics — unmatched campaigners in this category — steering the film.

Ecstatic critical notices at Toronto and Telluride (Kris’s take here) are merely the newest feather in the film’s cap: it already nabbed the Golden Bear (plus Best Actor and Actress) at February’s Berlin fest, and was released to a shower of acclaim in the UK this summer. If the buzz continues to build for this late-December release, could Sony even angle for extra attention in the highly pliable Best Original Screenplay category? A far-fetched suggestion, perhaps, but I wonder.

This is Farhadi’s second time at bat in the Oscar game: his breakout feature “About Elly” was unsuccessfully submitted two years ago. Indeed, Iran has had no luck in this category since scoring its first and only nod in the 1998 awards; I suspect the drought ends here. Reviewing “A Separation” (under its former, more unwieldy title) in February, I described the film as “commendably tricky adult storytelling… [playing] out with all the momentum and immediacy of a well-constructed thriller.” Kris was similarly impressed at Telluride last week.

Iran isn’t the only Middle Eastern country with its eye on the prize: Lebanon has submitted Nadine Labaki’s “Where Do We Go Now?,” a serious-minded comedy with musical elements that premiered to warm reviews in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard section, where it earned a special mention from the Ecumenical Jury.

I didn’t see the film myself, but this story of a group of village women trying to instigate peace between rival Christian and Muslim communities was reportedly an audience favorite at the festival, and appears to have the blend of issue-based gravity and populist sentiment that the Academy might like. Labaki’s previous film, the appealing arthouse hit “Caramel,” was (surprisingly, I think) unsuccessfully submitted in 2007 — could she go one better this time? If the Academy decides there’s only room for one film from that geographic region, my money’s on Farhadi.

Check out our updated list of submissions here.

[Photo: Sony Pictures Classics]




→ 22 Comments Tags: , , , , , | Filed in: Daily

22 responses so far

  • 1 9-12-2011 at 1:53 pm

    brace said...

    doesn’t matter what countries submit. Academy never nominates best foreign films.Of 5 nominees they nominate 3 no one expected to be nominated.it is unpredictable but still the least interesting category.

  • 2 9-12-2011 at 4:24 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Brace: Hardly. This year, for example, most pundits saw the nominations for Biutiful, In a Better World and Incendies coming. Ditto The Secret in Their Eyes, A Prophet and The White Ribbon two years ago. And recent winners have been pretty predictable for anyone who keeps track of that branch’s voting habits.

    I agree with you that they rarely nominate the best in foreign-language cinema, but that’s a different argument entirely.

  • 3 9-13-2011 at 12:59 am

    Glenn said...

    I was wondering if this was going to get a 2011 release and be eligible for the screenplay category since it seems like it could easily slide in if it gets enough critical support.

  • 4 9-13-2011 at 2:22 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    Glenn: It’s scheduled for a release on December 30, which is so neatly under the wire it makes me wonder if they have more than the foreign-language category in mind.

  • 5 9-13-2011 at 12:48 pm

    Ali E. said...

    Iran should easily and deservingly win this year.

  • 6 9-13-2011 at 6:21 pm

    Daniel said...

    Hey, don’t know if you’ve seen it, but Brazil has picked “Bruna Surfistinha” as its official contender. It’s a real story about a medium-class girl (the title-character) that decided to become a prostitute. She launched a blog about it, which then turned into some sort of a phenomenon best seller book there. No chance of real nomination, though. Pretty cheap stuff. Anyways, just thought I’d share.

  • 7 9-14-2011 at 5:27 am

    Moises said...

    The spanish preselection is:
    – The Skin I Live In (Pedro Almodóvar)
    – Pan Negro (Agustí Villaronga)
    – La Voz Dormida (Benito Zambrano)

  • 8 9-22-2011 at 9:02 am

    vahid said...

    very nice

  • 9 9-22-2011 at 9:03 am

    moradi said...

    like

  • 10 9-22-2011 at 9:04 am

    bloger said...

    liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiikeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

  • 11 9-22-2011 at 9:05 am

    vahid said...

    besiar aalieeee v top

  • 12 9-22-2011 at 9:06 am

    vahid said...

    خیلی زیبا و پر محتوا بود باید ماند و مبارزه کرد

  • 13 9-22-2011 at 4:15 pm

    se7en said...

    just “a separation”

  • 14 9-27-2011 at 2:00 pm

    sam said...

    tanx for all…..i love you…!!!!i see you and i see myself…….!!!!

  • 15 9-30-2011 at 5:33 am

    PEYMANEH said...

    خیلی زیبا

  • 16 10-20-2014 at 7:42 am

    cnptsmkqc said...

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    Leather shoulder bag

    SHOULDER BAG
    Shoulder hand bags come in numerous shapes and sizes. They’re fairly large and can normally hold your wallet, keys, mobile phone, books, notepad, makeup products and more. They’re sometimes compartmentalized with different pockets both inside and out. These bags are designed to be worn over the shoulder. Shoulder bags have become practical and maybe the most common bag carried by females.

    CLUTCH
    A clutch is a type of handbag that doesn’t have handles. It can be taken in the hand or tucked under your arm. Throughout the history of bags, clutches have been relatively small and often reserved for evenings. Clutches can hold your keys, driver’s license, a lipstick and that’s about it. However in recent times, the “oversized” clutch has grown in popularity. These hand bags are designed the same as a typical clutch but they’re bigger and can carry all your essentials.

    Clutches may be soft-bodied, framed or even hard-cased. They come in number of shapes and materials, including silk, patent leather and sequined fabrics. A clutch can be closed with a fold-over flap, top closure, zipper, push lock, drawstring or any number other types of closures.

    HANDHELD BAG
    Obviously, these handbags are designed to be held by hand. They give a small handle. They’re not intended to be slung over the shoulder – these bags can only be handheld. They are normally smaller than a shoulder bag, but larger than a clutch.

    Colorful tote bag

    TOTE BAG
    These kinds of casual bags are often made from canvas. Tote bags are open at the top and frequently have one main compartment. Tote bags are incredibly big. When over your shoulder, tote bags usually fall around elbow length. Tote bags are perfect for the beach, outside activities or shopping.

    MESSENGER BAG
    Messenger bags can also be often called crossbody bags as a result of how they are worn. These bags are great since you can’t loose them! Worn over the body, messenger bag are available in numerous styles and sizes. Crossbody bags are commonly worn by students and tourists.

    BACKPACK
    Another bag which is popular among students is the backpack. These types of bags have two straps and are supposed to be worn on your back. Backpacks are fantastic for carrying school books, notepads and other somewhat heavy items. These are normally made of nylon, but they may also be canvas or leather. Backpacks can also be perfect for traveling, hiking, camping along with activities.

    The style of handbag you choose depends on what you should carry, where you are going and your personal style preferences. Many women provide an favorite that they carry almost daily, only switching to a smaller or larger bag for special events or circumstances. Other women own a large number of handbags and switch their bag regularly, matching it with their outfit, destination and mood.

    Now that you understand the handbag categories by how you carry them, we will break it down a little further. On the next page, we discusses some of the more common shapes of handbags.

  • 17 10-20-2014 at 8:02 am

    cnptsmkqc said...

    When looking for a completely new handbag this time, cosider your body type. Not every handbag is fantastic for each woman. Follow these suggestions to get the perfect handbag to suit your needs.Usually when it comes to handbags, the opposite shape of your body type is one of flattering. When you shop, go to the dressing room, carry the bag as you normally would and check it out from all angles in the mirror.

    Female with handbags

    TALL AND THIN
    Pick handbags by using a short, slouchy shape such as the hobo. Avoid shoulder bags with a short strap as they can make you look even taller. Select handbags that are wider than they are tall. A clutch is a good option.

    PETITE
    Regardless of what you see in Hollywood, big bags aren’t for small ladies. Big bags often overwhelm your frame. Steer clear of shoulder bags with a long strap as they will weigh you down, making you look even smaller.

    PLUS-SIZE
    Pick a big structured or boxy bag to balance your curves. Don’t have a bag that is too small as it will make you look larger. If you love prints, keep away from tiny patterns.

    EVERYONE
    If you are splurging upon an high-priced handbag, choose one that you may be able to wear often. There’s no need to spend $500 or more on the bag which will rarely make it out of your closet. If you’re getting several low-priced hand bags instead, find one basic everyday bag in brown or black. Then, experiment with fun, funky styles and metallics for the other hand bags.

    If you aren’t sure about the different types of purses and bags, on the next page are some general guidelines to help you along the way.

  • 18 10-20-2014 at 11:21 am

    cnptsmkqc said...

    HOBO
    A hobo handbag is a soft body, crescent-shaped bag. These bags is often dressy or casual. Most hobos use a top zipper closure.

    SATCHEL
    A satchel includes a short handle and is a handheld or sometimes put across the shoulder. It provides a flat bottom and a zippered, clasped, drawstring or buckled top.

    FRAME BAG
    A frame handbag is a bag the has a hard frame, rather than a smooth body. Frame handbags come in variety of shapes, including satchels, doctor bags and bowling bags.

    ENVELOPE BAG
    An envelope handbag is actually a clutch which is the same shape as an envelope having a fold-over flap closure.

    WRISTLET
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    Evening bag

    EVENING BAGS
    Special occasion or evening bags are available in a variety of different styles and shapes. They could be mini-clutches, drawstring bags, small shoulder bags or other various bag. Whatever style and shape, evening bags are usually shiny, featuring patent leather, sequins, crystals or jewels. Hard case clutches metallic or hard plastic have become in popularity these days.

    Other well known forms of bags, include the doctor bag, bowler, baguette and duffle.

  • 19 10-20-2014 at 7:53 pm

    cnptsmkqc said...

    HOBO
    A hobo bag may be a comfortable body, crescent-shaped bag. These bags could be dressy or casual. Most hobos feature a top zipper closure.

    SATCHEL
    A satchel includes a short handle and is a handheld or sometimes put above the shoulder. It comes with a flat bottom and a zippered, clasped, drawstring or buckled top.

    FRAME BAG
    A frame handbag is a bag the includes a hard frame, rather than smooth body. Frame bags come in number of shapes, including satchels, doctor bags and bowling bags.

    ENVELOPE BAG
    An envelope bag is a clutch that’s the same shape as an envelope having a fold-over flap closure.

    WRISTLET
    A wristlet is an extremely small bag which has a very thin strap to use around your wrist. It holds very little – oftentimes less than a wallet. Wristlets have grown to be popular in recent years, particular at nighttime clubs whenever you don’t want to set down your handbag.

    Evening bag

    EVENING BAGS
    Special occasion or evening hand bags can be found in a variety of different styles and shapes. They could be mini-clutches, drawstring bags, small shoulder bags or some other variety of bag. Whatever shape and style, evening bags are usually shiny, featuring patent leather, sequins, crystals or jewels. Hard case clutches metallic or hard plastic have become in popularity in recent years.

    Other well-liked styles of bags, include the doctor bag, bowler, baguette and duffle.

  • 20 10-21-2014 at 2:55 pm

    cnptsmkqc said...

    Handbags can be found in various shapes, styles, materials and colors. They’re designed, not only to hold your belongings, but will also to develop a fashion statement. When categorizing handbags, you should think of them in 2 ways – the shape of the the bag and the way you carry it. First we’ll categorize bags by how you carry them.

    Leather shoulder handbag

    SHOULDER BAG
    Shoulder hand bags come in numerous shapes and sizes. They’re fairly large and may normally hold your wallet, keys, mobile phone, textbooks, note pad, makeup and much more. They’re sometimes compartmentalized with different pockets both inside and out. These handbags are created to be worn over the shoulder. Shoulder bags are extremely practical and possibly the most common bag carried by ladies.

    CLUTCH
    A clutch is a type of handbag that doesn’t have handles. It may be taken in your hand or tucked under your arm. Through the history of bags, clutches have been relatively small and often reserved for evenings. Clutches can hold your keys, driver’s license, a lipstick and that’s about it. However in recent years, the “oversized” clutch is growing in popularity. These bags are made the same as a regular clutch but they’re larger and can carry all your essentials.

    Clutches might be soft-bodied, framed or maybe hard-cased. They come in variety of shapes and materials, including silk, patent leather and sequined fabrics. A clutch can be closed with a fold-over flap, top closure, zipper, push lock, drawstring or any number other types of closures.

    HANDHELD BAG
    Obviously, these bags are designed to be held by hand. They give a small handle. They are not intended to be slung over the shoulder – these bags can only be handheld. They are normally smaller compared to a shoulder bag, but bigger than a clutch.

    Colorful tote bag

    TOTE BAG
    These kinds of casual bags are often made out of canvas. Tote bags are open at the top and often have only one main compartment. Tote bags are very big. When over your shoulder, tote bags usually fall around elbow length. Tote bags are great for the beach, outside actions or shopping.

    MESSENGER BAG
    Messenger hand bags are also often called crossbody bags as a result of how they are worn. These bags are wonderful as you can’t loose them! Worn over the body, messenger bag come in a variety of styles and sizes. Crossbody bags are generally worn by students and travelers.

    BACKPACK
    Another bag that is popular among students is the backpack. These types of bags have two straps and are intended as worn on your back. Backpacks are best for carrying school books, notepads as well as other somewhat heavy items. These are normally made of nylon, but they may also be canvas or leather. Backpacks are also perfect for traveling, hiking, camping along with activities.

    The style of handbag you decide depends on what you must carry, where you are going and your personal style preferences. Many women provide an favorite that they carry almost daily, only switching to a smaller or larger bag for special events or circumstances. Other women own a large number of handbags and switch their bag on a regular basis, matching it with their outfit, destination and mood.

    Now that you understand the handbag categories by how you carry them, we will break it down a little further. On the next page, we discusses some of the more common shapes of handbags.

  • 21 10-21-2014 at 3:22 pm

    cnptsmkqc said...

    When shopping for the latest handbag this season, cosider your body type. Not all handbag is ideal for all women. Follow these tips to get the perfect handbag for yourself.Generally when it comes to handbags, the opposite shape of your body type is the most flattering. When you shop, head to the dressing room, carry the bag just like you normally would and check it out from all angles in the mirror.

    Women with handbags

    TALL AND THIN
    Select handbags with a short, slouchy shape such as the hobo. Avoid shoulder bags with a short strap as they can make you look even taller. Choose handbags which can be wider than they are tall. A clutch is an excellent option.

    PETITE
    In spite of what you see in Hollywood, large bags aren’t for small ladies. Large bags usually overcome your frame. Steer clear of shoulder bags with a long strap as they will weigh you down, making you look even smaller.

    PLUS-SIZESelect a big structured or boxy bag to balance out your curves. Don’t use a bag that is too small as it will make you look larger. If you love prints, keep away from tiny styles.

    EVERYONEWhen you’re splurging with an expensive handbag, pick one that you’ll be able to wear often. You don’t need to spend $500 or even more on a bag that may rarely make it out of your closet. If you’re purchasing several cheap bags instead, find one basic everyday bag in black or brown. Then, experiment with fun, funky styles and metallics for your other bags.

    If you aren’t sure about the different types of purses and bags, on the next page are some general guidelines to help you along the way.