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Z

Does Costa-Gavras’ film feel as relevant today as it did in 1969? How does the structure of the storytelling work in detailing the elements of this political thriller? Should it have won Best Picture in addition to Best Foreign Language Film? Tune in to this week’s show to get answers to these questions and more!

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“Here we go. It’s a murder now. They’ll be calling it a plot if this drags on.”

Being from Greece but raised in France, director Costa-Gavras still felt very much connected to his home country. When the democratic politician and leftist activist Grigoris Lambrakis was assassinated in 1963 by right-wing zealots, which pushed the country into mass riots and political unrest that led to a dictatorship, Costa-Gavras was inspired to tell the story cinematically. Based on a book that was a roman à clef, he chose to use the same deliberate way to craft his film, making it a very thinly veiled fiction about this real-world story. Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we continue our Foreign Films Nominated for Best Picture series with Costa-Gavras’ 1969 film Z.

We talk about the nature of this true story and how it’s fictional, but very deliberate in its telling of Lambrakis’ murder. We chat about the was that Costa-Gavras put the film together and how intense and alive it is right out of the gate – and how fitting it is for its time. We look at the shifts in the story and debate if it works going from the assassination to the investigation to the trial. We look at the cast and how well they do in their parts. We talk about the documentary-style approach to the film in camera work and editing. And we debate its run at the Oscars and if it deserved the awards it took home.

We have a great time talking about this great film, so check it out then tune in. The Next Reel. When the movie ends, our conversation begins.

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