Switzerland is the first country out of the gate to select the film that will represent one of the almost 90+ film nation options in the category of Best International Film. The honor goes to Carmen Jaquier’s Thunder — a film that had its world premiere at the 2022 TIFF in the prestigious Platform section. Also known as Foudre, Jaquier’s sophomore feature has
yet to secure a North American distributor – but this could change if the sales team find a small output deal. The Dekanalog folks picked this up.
As per Kevin Jagernauth, this was one of the better film offerings in the programme at TIFF – “cropping out the subject of the photo, who is churning butter on New Year’s Day, Jaquier zooms in on the nearly hidden face of the woman sitting off to the side: worn, defeated, and seemingly despondent. It’s against this unguarded honesty that Foudre (Thunder) rolls in like quiet storm, centering on a young woman’s spiritual and sexual awakening, as she pushes against the limited space women were expected to occupy in the early 1900s.”
Jaquier recently completed production on her third feature (technically completed before the pandemic) and shares the co-directing duties with Jan Gassmann. Les Paradis de Diane appears to be heavier dramatic terrain for the filmmaker – after the birth of her first child, Diane disappears in an unknown city, but her body reawakens her memories and what she is fleeing from. This will be launched in 2024 – perhaps Berlinale is in the cards.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Switzerland: Foudre – Carmen Jaquier
Tajikistan: Melody – Behrouz Sebt Rasoul