Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Film Club: Golden Globes 2016

If you don't keep up with the annual awards shows, then you might not know that the 73rd Golden Globe Awards took place on Sunday night. The Golden Globes, which are awarded by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, are somewhat unique because they honor both film and television. It's also generally considered to be one of the most entertaining U.S. awards shows to watch since the nominees are seated at small tables (instead of traditional theater seating) where they keep the champagne flowing all evening, which often leads to unexpected situations.

However, today we're only interested in discussing this year's nominees (and winner) for the "Best Foreign Language Film" award. Even though only one received the Golden Globe, we think they'll all make great additions to our "films to watch" list!

The Brand New Testament - Belgium/France/Luxembourg

If you enjoy satire and aren't easily offended, then you might want to watch Le Tout Nouveau Testament, as it's known in French. This unique film is set in Brussels, Belgium, where God (in human form) lives with his wife and daughter. Suffice it to say that he's not exactly the nicest guy around, so his daughter decides to take matters into her own hands and improve the world, which leads to all kinds of crazy unintended consequences.

The Club - Chile

For a completely different look at religious issues, there's El Club, a Chilean film about four disgraced Catholic priests who live in a secluded beach town because they are suspected of crimes such as child abuse. When their household gains a new member, all of their lives are affected.

The Fencer - Finland/Germany/Estonia

A fencing competition in Sicily.
Known as Miekkailija in Finnish, The Fencer is a fictional drama based on the life of Estonian fencer Endel Nelis. After leaving Russia to escape the secret police in the 1950s, he went on to found a famous fencing school.

Mustang - France

Set in a village in Turkey, Mustang tells the story of five orphaned sisters growing up in a conservative society where arranged marriages are common, and focuses on how they try to find freedom in whatever small ways they can.

Son of Saul - Hungary

Last, but most certainly not least, there's Son of Saul, which was the first ever Hungarian film to win a Golden Globe. This past May it also won the Grand Prix, the second most prestigious award of the Cannes Film Festival.

Known by the title Saul fia in Hungarian, Son of Saul is the story of a Hungarian-Jewish prisoner in the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II. While doing his forced work in the crematorium, he finds the body of a boy that he believes to be his son and attempts to arrange for a proper burial.

Have you seen any of these foreign language films? If so, what did you think of them? Let us know in the comments below!