This is always an uncertain category, so it could be anyone’s award despite the hype over Son of Saul.
Unfortunately, none of them are on Netflix this year so it’ll be difficult to get out and see the nominees before the show, so here’s a quick summary of each with trailers and Rotten Tomato scores attached:
WWII story Son of Saul shows a Jewish worker’s search for a rabbi in Auschwitz to give a child a proper burial. RT 95%, this won the Grand Prix award at Cannes early last year, along with many awards since.
Five orphaned sisters in Turkey live a strictly organized life as their family arranges marriages for them in Mustang. RT 96%, James Franco labeled this as the best film of 2015 on his movie column.
Theeb lives in a remote area within the Ottoman Empire in 1916 and comes along for the journey as his older brother leads a British officer through the desert in WWI. RT 96%, a unique coming-of-age story.
A War is Denmark’s war story for the year, following a commander in a courtroom trial after a decision leads to the death of 11 civilians during the Afghanistan war. RT 100%, Denmark is a frequent competitor in this category winning once in four nominations since 2010.
In the early 1900s in the Columbian Amazon, a young shaman helps a German explorer and his guide search for a medicinal plant in Embrace of the Serpent. RT 91%, this is a black-and-white film that emphasizes the colonizing effect of European powers through a personal tale.
- Son of Saul (Hungary)
- Mustang (France)
- Theeb (Jordan)
- A War (Denmark)
- Embrace of the Serpent (Columbia)