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This is the blog of Ian Rosales Casocot. Filipino writer. Sometime academic. Former backpacker. Twink bait. Hamster lover.

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Saturday, October 11, 2014

entry arrow3:33 AM | Love is Blind

The race for the 87th Academy Awards has essentially started with all the online punditry abuzz with each new screening -- and as usual, I want to do my annual unflagging attempt to seeing all possible films in contention, even before the official nominations come on January. This blog series aims to chronicle this effort.

Daniel Ribeiro's Hoje Eu Quero Voltar Sozinho [The Way He Looks] is Brazil's entry to the current race for Oscar's Best Foreign Language Film, and I find the film likeable and endearing, the same way I felt when I saw the short film Eu Não Quero Voltar Sozinho [I Don't Want to Go Back Alone] that was its genesis in 2010. To go straight to the point, it is the unfolding story of the dynamics of friendship between a blind but feistily independent Brazilian high schooler, his girl best friend who protects him from bullies, and the handsome curly-haired new boy in school. Things happen, and soon you have a sweet chronicle of a boy coming of age, falling in love, longing for an unsheltered life, and finding out that he is gay. Gainfully acted and produced, The Way He Looks doesn't strike me, however, as a film that breaks new ground. It doesn't need to, of course -- but without that it doesn't rise above the cookie cutter. It's almost like the film equivalent of pizza -- albeit a gay, PWD pizza -- but still pizza, and thus leaves you yearning still for a fuller meal. Anyone can enjoy this, but that's the very nature of the commonplace.

Best Foreign Language Oscar Chances: Slim.


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