Okay. It's time to get down to brass tacks. I'm going to get up on my soapbox and hope that the right Academy members read the column this week, because it's time to re-do the rules of the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar category. Do you know how long it has been since a great film, a truly great film, won in this category? I'm talking about a film made by a genuinely great artist of the cinema, a film for the ages, and not just a perfectly good film, or a film about one of the great world wars. Here's your answer: twenty-five years ago. Ingmar Bergman's Fanny and Alexander (1983) was the last great one. That leaves 25 years of pretty good, just OK, forgettable, or flat-out awful winners (mostly forgettable). This year's winner, The Counterfeiters (41 screens) had to be one of the worst movies I saw all year; at it's center is a perfectly good (true) WWII concentration camp story, but it's warped by an entirely inept director, responsible for one of the worst movies I've ever seen, All the Queen's Men (2001). How did it win? How did it get past all the truly great films of 2007?

categories Oscars, Columns, Cinematical