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Entries in The Salesman (10)

Wednesday
Dec202017

100 Biggest Foreign Language Hits of 2017

Our year in review party begins. A different list each day. Here's Nathaniel R...

In the Fade didnt risk release in 2017 after all, hoping for Oscar favor to buoy its release in 2018Time for an annual look back at subtitled fare in cinemas. As with last year's list India, China, Mexico, and South Korea dominate with a smattering of other countries faring much less well in the American marketplace. Much of that is due, we think, to dedicated distributors focusing specifically on one market like FIP, China Lion and WellGo. Some of the movies we though might be big deals this year like Chile's Oscar nominee A Fantastic Woman opted for Oscar qualifying release only and Germany's Oscar finalist In the Fade starring Diane Kruger (pictured left) opted to sneak out at the last second to qualify for all Oscars though it did not receive nominations, buried in that post Christmas glut of tiny releases.

For the purposes of this list we skipped documentaries and animated films to keep the list more focused (and avoid arguments about dubbed versions or whatnot) but please to know that had we kept them in the wonderful Turkish street cat documentary Kedi would be in the top ten right here. This list is otherwise, as carefully as we could manage, accurate though we're happy to take corrections should we have missed something.

TOP 100 FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILMS FOR 2017
Listed By US Box Office Gross only 
Title links go to reviews | 🔺 = still in theaters
Note: Figures are as of January 21st, 2018

Click to read more ...

Monday
May082017

The Furniture: The Salesman Crafts His Own Stage

"The Furniture" is our weekly series on Production Design. You can click on the images to see them in magnified detail. Here's Daniel Walber...

Asghar Farhadi's Oscar winning The Salesman begins with a set. The opening credits appear over the quiet stage of a small Tehran theater, nearly ready to debut a new production of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman. We see the bed before the actors who will lie in it, neon lights illuminated for an empty house. It is a quite literal setting of the stage before the drama begins.

It’s not a play adaptation, but it often feels like one. There are few locations and the cast is small. And, as in many play adaptations, the production design does a lot of heavy lifting...

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Saturday
Feb252017

Joint Statement from Best Foreign Language Film Directors

The nominated directors from this year's Best Foreign Language Film nominees (Land of Mine, A Man Called Ove, The Salesman, Toni Erdmann, and Tanna) have released a joint statement about the Oscars, human rights, and the growing climate of nationalism around the world. It's a must read.

They write...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Feb072017

Q&A: Overhyped Loveables, Depression Coping Tactics, and Best Foreign Film 

Happy Hump Day Almost! Why do some weeks feel so much like surviving itself is the only goal / triumph? I have let the Q&A column go but we're getting back on the horse and will try to do them more regularly. Here are seven questions from last week and two from a long time ago.

Ready? Let's go! Questions about awards seasons calendar, Brie Larson, director/cinematographer teams, and coping with depression after the jump...

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Tuesday
Jan312017

Farhadi Isn't Coming to the Oscars. Go See "The Salesman" in Solidarity

As we've previously noted briefly, the leading actress of The Salesman was not coming to the Oscars in protest of  T****'s unconstitutional and immoral ban on Muslims entering the US. Now the great Iranian director Asghar Farhadi (A Separation) will not be attending the Oscars either. The ban has created chaos around the world and the awards show plans of filmmakers is, of course, low on the totem pole of injustices. But still, this sucks. When I spoke with Farhadi about The Salesman in December, he spoke fondly of the Oscar experience and how international it felt, sharing the experience with the other nominees.

Farhadi released a beautifully articulate damning statement which reads in part:

Hardliners, despite their nationalities, political arguments and wars, regard and understand the world in very much the same way. In order to understand the world, they have no choice but to regard it via an “us and them” mentality, which they use to create a fearful image of “them” and inflict fear in the people of their own countries.

This is not just limited to the United States; in my country hardliners are the same. For years on both sides of the ocean, groups of hardliners have tried to present to their people unrealistic and fearful images of various nations and cultures in order to turn their differences into disagreements, their disagreements into enmities and their enmities into fears. Instilling fear in the people is an important tool used to justify extremist and fanatic behavior by narrow-minded individuals.

Speaking truth to power. Every word of that is exactly right. 

Sunday
Jan292017

Box Office Boom for Best Pictures...

Hidden Figures and La La Land both crossed the $100 million mark this weekend.

This weekend saw three Best Picture nominees re-expanding (Moonlight, Fences, Arrival) to capitalize on their Oscar nominations each adding a million plus to their already successful grosses. Arrival is so close to $100 million now ($97.3) but it will be still be a stretch to hit that milestone with its Blu-Ray release just two weeks away. In fact every Best Picture nominee that's still in theaters experienced a boost at the box office this weekend except Hidden Figures (which was already roaring) but that drama's neglible 11% drop continues to suggest a very long run to come.

The shadow side of this equation? That's what's happening to the prestige pictures that weren't nominated...

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