September 21, 2013 - 12:33 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - The Brazilian Ministry of Culture announced Kleber Mendonça Filho’s Neighboring Sounds will be the country’s bid in the race for a Foreign Language Oscar nomination, The Hollywood Reporter said.
The decision was made by a Ministry of Culture commission, which this year was formed by Audiovisual Secretary officials Leopoldo Nunes da Silva Filho and Sylvia Bahiense Naves, Itamaraty Minister of Culture George Torquato Firmeza, Sao Paulo Mostra director Renata de Almeida and Bananeira Filmes producer Vânia Catani.
Other candidates included Colegas, Faroeste Caboclo, Gonzaga - De Pai Para Filho, Uma História de Amor e Fúria and Meu Pé de Laranja Lima.
A FIPRESCI award winner in Rotterdam 2012, and one of the big Latin American hits in the festival circuit last year, Neighboring Sounds was also a big winner at home. The film picked Best Film awards at local competitions in both Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo film festivals. Also, The New York Times’ A.O. Scott included it in his Top 10 list of Best Films of 2012.
"This selection always brings more visibility to a film," said Mendonça Filho to newspaper Folha. "It’s too early to say which one is going to get nominated. I never raise expectations about an award, but lots of good things have happened with this film. I wouldn’t rule out the possibility."
He added: "I thought it was an almost parochial, local film, but after Rotterdam I realized the film seemed to have a universal spirit".
“The characters in this densely populated movie can be roughly divided into masters and servants, and you notice just how much labor — ironing clothes, refilling water coolers, delivering packages, opening doors, selling drugs — goes into maintaining the leisure class in its life of ease. But Mr. Mendonça, a former film critic whose command of the medium is both formidable and subtle, is up to something more than the usual upstairs-downstairs comedy of colliding destinies in a small place. The scope of his movie is narrow, but its ambitions are enormous, and it accomplishes nothing less than the illumination of the peculiar state of Brazilian (and not only Brazilian) society,” a review published in The New York Times said.