Where Do We Go Now?

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  • Shadi
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    #112261

    Has anyone watched “Where Do We Go Now?” (2011), which was Lebanon’s submission to the Best Foreign Language film category (84th Annual Academy Awards). It won a good number of awards in film festivals (including crowd favorite at TIFFs) and was expected to be nominated. Sure, it wouldn’t have won against Iran’s “A Seperation” but it deserved a nomination at the very least.

    The movie is a story about a village in Lebanon that is seperated from the outside world, amidst the Civil War (between the Muslims and Christians) which occured abou 4 decades ago. In this town, half of the residents are Muslims and the other half are Christians. The people of this town seem to co-exist fine despite the civil war that has spread to almost every area in Lebanon. However, once a Television is introduced to this town, the town residents gather around to watch the news, and there it all begins. The peaceful village turns into a street fight and it comes down to the united women of this town to stop their husbands from battling eachother. These women resort to some of the silliest techniques including hiring prostitutes to distract their husbands among many other hilarious plans. This light comedy increases in seriousness until a tragic event shakes the town up. It beautifully swings between light comedy and tragedy, with a Lebanese ensemble cast that provides very solid performances, and a scenery that makes the viewers feel at home. The movie’s soundtracks are superb and you will download the entire album after you’re done watching, I will guarantee you that. Directed by one of Lebanese’s best, Nadine Labaki, a young woman who tackles political issues in most of her movies. This one is not to be missed. It will make you laugh, cry, and every emotion in between. If you have watched it, let me know your thoughts, and help me understand why it didn’t receive a nomination. If you haven’t watched it, I advise you to do so, you will NOT regret it.

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    babypook
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    #112263

    Yes I saw it. I cant remember the exact grade I gave it, but it was an A or an A-. A wonderful film, and very respectful of women. All women n’est ce pas? Nadine Labaki is incredible. The cast overall is infinitely watchable to boot.
    Overall it was a relatively strong field with FLF’s. I certainly preferred this one over what won. I realize I am in the minority, but I did not care for A Separation, and I still dislike it. I hated it, in fact.
    Labaki would have been a worthy nominee, along with the score and the writing. Labaki in particular is as good (and better) than who received the noms that year.     

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    Shadi
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    #112264

    Yes I saw it. I cant remember the exact grade I gave it, but it was an A or an A-. A wonderful film, and very respectful of women. All women n’est ce pas? Nadine Labaki is incredible. The cast overall is infinitely watchable to boot.
    Overall it was a relatively strong field with FLF’s. I certainly preferred this one over what won. I realize I am in the minority, but I did not care for A Separation, and I still dislike it. I hated it, in fact.
    Labaki would have been a worthy nominee, along with the score and the writing. Labaki in particular is as good (and better) than who received the noms that year.     

    Thank you! I honestly never watch Lebanese movies although I am Lebanese and living in Lebanon. But this was so hyped up, everyone was talking about it for months. So I decided to give it a shot and I was baffled by how attractive and compelling it was. I haven’t watched A Separation yet, and maybe it should’ve won, but WDWGN was seriously snubbed. It’s sad cause Lebanon doesn’t submit good films very often, and I felt this was our chance of getting some recognition.  

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    babypook
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    #112265

    This is another example of how, a win at Cannes often means squat with the Academy.
    Btw, I found lots to love about Lebanon while I was there. The fruit puts ours to shame, for example. Lol. 

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    Shadi
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    #112266

    This is another example of how, a win at Cannes often means squat with the Academy.
    Btw, I found lots to love about Lebanon while I was there. The fruit puts ours to shame, for example. Lol. 

    Oh my! What else did you find out? I’m always interested to see what foreigners think of our country since it’s so tiny and not really well-known!  

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    Chatan
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    #112267

    Interesting topic since It will shown at a local film festival starting tomorrow and it’s the one I want to see. 

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    babypook
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    #112268

    [quote=”babypook”]This is another example of how, a win at Cannes often means squat with the Academy.
    Btw, I found lots to love about Lebanon while I was there. The fruit puts ours to shame, for example. Lol. 

    Oh my! What else did you find out? I’m always interested to see what foreigners think of our country since it’s so tiny and not really well-known!  [/quote]

    Well for starters. I learned that they like Canadians a whole lot more than our neighbours. Lol.

    @Chatan: Hope you enjoy the film. The cast and screenplay are terrific, plus the film is gorgeous-looking to boot.    

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    Scottferguson
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    #112269

    It’s a case where winning the Toronto FF People’s Choice award meant squat for a film – it was a shocking winner, then met with indifference in the US (as well as Canada) when it was released theatrically.

    The only prize I can find that it won at Cannes was a special mention from the Ecumenical jury for Un Certain Regard, so it’s not as though Cannes had a chance to have an impact.

    I liked the film, but prefer her earlier Caramel actually.

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    Shadi
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    #112270

    Interesting topic since It will shown at a local film festival starting tomorrow and it’s the one I want to see. 

     
    Awesome! Let us know what you think of it after you do!  

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    Shadi
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    #112271

    [quote=”ShadiAwwad”][quote=”babypook”]This is another example of how, a win at Cannes often means squat with the Academy.
    Btw, I found lots to love about Lebanon while I was there. The fruit puts ours to shame, for example. Lol. 

    Oh my! What else did you find out? I’m always interested to see what foreigners think of our country since it’s so tiny and not really well-known!  [/quote]

    Well for starters. I learned that they like Canadians a whole lot more than our neighbours. Lol.

    @Chatan: Hope you enjoy the film. The cast and screenplay are terrific, plus the film is gorgeous-looking to boot.    [/quote]

    Loool, true true. The largest % of Lebanese immigrants are located in Canada and Australia.  

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    Shadi
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    #112272

    It’s a case where winning the Toronto FF People’s Choice award meant squat for a film – it was a shocking winner, then met with indifference in the US (as well as Canada) when it was released theatrically.

    The only prize I can find that it won at Cannes was a special mention from the Ecumenical jury for Un Certain Regard, so it’s not as though Cannes had a chance to have an impact.

    I liked the film, but prefer her earlier Caramel actually.

    I don’t think the win was that shocking seeing how the movie plays on emotions a lot, and that, I think, plays a role in how people vote.

    I haven’t watched Caramel actually. Like I said, I really didn’t, and still don’t, watch Lebanese movies despite living there, but I only watched WDWGN because of the huge amount of buzz it received. Lebanon is a small country and the capital Beirut is even smaller so naturally, the “topic of the week” resonates throughout the entire country and you can’t help but listen to what people say about recent trends unless you’re living under a rock. And back then, everyone was talking about it, naturally because it was Lebanon’s first major internationally recognized movie and because it tackles a political issue that we were (still are) facing in 2011. But I think I’ll watch Caramel one day, to see if it’s really as underrated as people claim it is. 

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    Scottferguson
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    #112273

    It was shocking because usually the film that wins is a major English language film playing in the top sections. This was in Contemporary World Cinema, a fine but less seen section, and the showing came after Cannes, where most of what the US attendees knew was a bad review in Variety. It was by far the most surprising win ever.

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    Shadi
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    #112274

    Oh ok, you know more about this so I won’t argue, lol. But it was a nice victory, it certainly got our hopes up for an Oscar nomination. I think it was political, to be honest. The nominees included both Iran and Israel, adding Lebanon would’ve made for a controversial line-up, so the movie got shafted. 

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    Scottferguson
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    #112275

    It got the film a US distributor, which was important, and the best one for helping in the FL category.
    I honestly thought it had a good chance. I don’t think its exclusion though had anything to do with Iran and Israel getting in – it doesn’t work that way. In the initial committee, they give a vote from 7-10 on each film individually, if they like it what other films they like has little to do with it.
    Not sure what the reason was, but it wasn’t a shafting.

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    Shadi
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    #112276

    But what else could it be? I’m sure the voting process wouldn’t support the political shafting theory, but you just never really know. 

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