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Annual Top Films Lists

Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2016: #10. Lucrecia Martel’s Zama


Director: Lucrecia Martel
Writer: Lucrecia Martel

Argentinean director Lucrecia Martel has become one of her country’s most prolific filmmakers with three outstanding titles to her name, beginning with 2001’s La Cienega (where she won the Alfred Bauer film award in Berlin, and the title recently became part of the Criterion selection), 2004’s The Holy Girl, and the coolly received The Headless Woman in 2008, which has been critically recuperated since. Her latest, Zama, is a parody, according to Martel and is based on the highly regarded 1956 novel by Antonio di Benedetto focusing on Diego de Zama, an officer of the Spanish crown. While endlessly waiting for a transfer to Buenos Aires, he joins a party of soldiers hunting down a bandit before absconding to less regulated realms where he is allowed to live freely. The project is one of the most ambitious US-Latin America-Euro co-productions in the country’s history.

Cast: Daniel Gimenez Cacho, Lola Duenas

Production Co./Producers: REI Cinema’s Benjamin Domenech, Santiago Gallelli, Matias Roveda; Bananeira Films’ Vania Catani; El Deseo’s Agustin and Pedro Almodovar; O Som e a Furia’s Luis Urbano; KNM’s Michel Merkt;  Canana’s Pablo Cruz.

U.S. Distributor: Rights Available. TBD (domestic) The Match Factory (international)

Release Date: We’ve been anticipating the project for several years now, and Martel filmed last spring. Finally in pre-production, we are certain to see this show up in then main competition, where producer Pedro Almodovar will most likely be competing against Martel with his own latest directorial effort.

Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2021: France (Bruno Dumont), Passing (Rebecca Hall) and Nightmare Alley (Guillermo Del Toro). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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