‘Virunga’: Netflix returns to the Oscar race for Best Documentary Feature

After earning an Oscar nomination for “The Square” last year, Netflix is once again back in the awards discussion with “Virunga,” its new doc that just made the Academy Awards shortlist for Best Documentary Feature.

15 films make Oscar’s Best Documentary shortlist: ‘Life Itself,’ ‘Citizenfour’ …

Here’s how Netflix describes its new awards contender: “In the forested depths of eastern Congo lies Virunga National Park, one of the most bio-diverse places in the world and home to the last of the mountain gorillas. Here, an embattled team of park rangers that includes an ex-child soldier and a Belgian prince, risk their lives to protect this UNESCO World Heritage Site from armed rebels, poachers, and even corporations trying to wrest control of Congo’s rich natural resources.”

The film has a near-perfect score at Metacritic (95), with the L.A. Times declaring “Virunga” to be “a work of heart-wrenching tenderness and heart-stopping suspense.” The New York Times says, “Showcasing the best and the worst in human nature, Orlando von Einsiedel’s devastating documentary ‘Virunga’ wrenches a startlingly lucid narrative from a sickening web of bribery, corruption and violence.”

 

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Written and directed by Orlando von Einsiedel, the documentary is currently free to stream for all Netflix subscribers. Below, watch a trailer of the hot new Oscar contender.

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