One foreign language film in and already I’m blown away. The seventh Canadian film ever to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language film, it would be the second to actually win, behind 2003’s “The Barbarian Invasions” from director Denys Arcand. This year director Kim Nguyen takes the nomination, with the film “War Witch” headed by Rachel Mwanza, another nonprofessional actress with astonishing acting abilities. The harsh truth, however, is that Austria’s “Amour” has this category wrapped and tied with a bow, having a writing, directing, and Best Picture nomination.
Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language film, “War Witch” steps into the world of the Democratic Republic of Congo where the young Komona, played by Rachel Mwanza, astonishes as a kidnapee of the rebels and forced into the life of soldier. With a powerful mix of heartbreak, love, and lightheartedness, this Canada-made film not only brings up certain pertinent issues, but entertains from start to finish. Mwanza’s performance blows you away, as she sets the bar incredibly high for nonprofessional and professional actresses alike, much more than say Quvenzhané Wallis from “Beasts of the Southern Wild” despite the five year age difference. “War Witch” is hauntingly beautiful with strong visuals to back up strong emotions, with gritty landscapes and impeccable depictions of the dead, painted all in white and looming over the main character. This film is the true meaning of a coming-of-age story and with that comes one of the best foreign films of the year.
// Produced by Pierre Even, Marie-Claude Poulin, & Kim Nguyen // Directed by Kim Nguyen // CANADA //
// Dated Viewed: Sunday, January 27th, 2013 // ONLINE STREAMING // 19 films – 29 days //