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Oleg Sentsov Rhinoceros

Annual Top Films Lists

Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2021: #68. Oleg Sentsov’s Rhinoceros

Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2021: #68. Oleg Sentsov’s Rhinoceros


Ukraine’s Oleg Sentsov has returned the project he was working on prior to his 2014 incarceration in Russia, Rhinoceros, coproduced by Ukraine, Poland and Germany, with 50% of funding coming from State Agency of Ukraine for cinema (the project won several developmental awards throughout 2012, including the same agency). The film is being lensed by Polish DP Bogumil Godfrejow (whose recent credits include Oleg by director Juris Kursietis, which premiered at Directors’ Fortnight in 2019). Sentsov’s 2011 debut Gamer traveled the European festival circuit and won awards at the 2012 Odessa International Film Festival. In 2020, his follow-up feature Numbers (co-directed by Akhtem Seitablayev) premiered at the 2020 Berlin IFF in a sidebar.

Gist: A crime drama set in 1990s Ukraine based in Sentsov’s own play, the narrative concerns the impetus of an average person becoming a criminal during Ukraine’s transition out of the Soviet Union.

Release Date/Prediction: The project was originally scheduled for production 2013, halted by Sentsov’s arrest. Filming was scheduled to begin in Poland in the autumn of 2020, which suggests Sentsov could premiere for the first time in Cannes 2021, likely in Directors’ Fortnight or Un Certain Regard.

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), FIPRESCI, the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2023: The Beast (Bonello) Poor Things (Lanthimos), Master Gardener (Schrader). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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