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Charlie Hebdo (#110 of 7)

Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions Foreign Language

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Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Foreign Language
Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Foreign Language

In the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attacks, Timbuktu’s lucid depiction of innocents rightfully, righteously fighting fundamentalism from within feels especially eye-opening. But given how its Brechtian dramaturgical sensibility stands in such sharp contrast to Birdman’s razzle-dazzling variety, its presence here is immediately surprising. Worse, Abderrahmane Sissako’s Cannes winner, only the second film from sub-Saharan Africa to be nominated in this category, made news last week when the mayor of a Parisian suburb tried to ban the film from a local cinema after deeming it, sight unseen, as “an apology for terrorism,” suggesting that its anti-jihadist message may not be unambiguous enough for the Academy’s peanut gallery.