Who will / should win the Ophirs? – Blog – The Film Experience

Posted By on September 16, 2022

A special guest report from Israel about the upcoming Israeli film awards - Editor

Top contenders for the Israeli Oscar

by Johnathan Tsuria

The 2022 Ophir awards will take place at September the 18th, and the film which wins the top prize will represent Israel at the Oscars. For most Israelis, that is the only point of interest about these awards, as they are plagued by countless decisions that prevent moviegoers here from caring. The major problem is that there is zero connection between the films released so far in cinemas and the films which end up competing for the awards. For example, from the 5 nominees for Best Picture, only one (Where is Anne Frank) was released before the nominations were announced. Another (Cinema Sabaya), was released after they were announced, and the presumed frontrunner (Karaoke) will be released only after the ceremony. The other two (Valeria Is Getting Married, 35 Downhill) have no release date scheduled for Israeli cinemas apart from presumably their qualifying showings. Last year's winner, Let it Be Morning, wasn't reelased for regular moviegoers until the spring of 2022.

Generally, I have to say that the nominations were something of a disappointment. Great films like June Zero and All I Can Do were mostly shut out while something like Where Is Anne Frank snagged a best picture nomination surely because the voters think it may do well at the Oscars It got one other nomination, for sound, and thats it. However, there are good films nominated so lets try to predict who will win...

Best PictureKaraoke, Cinema Sabaya, 35 Downhill, Where Is Anne Frank, Valeria is Getting Married

KARAOKEWill Win: Karaoke. The film is a major crowd-pleaser at festivals (including Tribeca where it premiered) and audiences are connecting and relating to its tale of an elderly couple dreaming of being something more.Could Win: Unless they decide that Valeria is Getting Married, now playing at TIFF, has more chance to get into the Oscar line up, in which chance it may nab the top prize. This is the result when Best Picture voting is synonymous with Oscar submission.Should Win: Cinema Sabaya. Though it's a small movie about municipal workers taking a film class it's a masterwork.

Best Director: Moshe Rozental, Karaoke; Orit Foucs Rotem, Cinema Sabaya; Michal Vinik, Valeria is Getting Married; Yona Rozenkier, 35 Downhill; Maor Zaguri, Virginity


Will Win: Karaoke. As with the Oscars in America, a Picture/Director Split is becoming more common at the Ophirs. But splits usually happen for a reason and it's hard to see a viable one this year.Could Win: Virginity. Maor Zaguris film has a certain bonkers quality to it so if youre into it than youre really into it. And the film was liked enough to get major nominations, even if it presumably just-missed the Best Picture field.

Should Win: Orit Foucs Rotem for Cinema Sabaya. A debut so strong and confident that you just want to make sure shell get the opportunity to make a second film something a lot if Israeli directors (including past Ophir winners) have had trouble achieving.

Best ActorNominees: Moris Cohen, The Silence; Sason Gabay, Karaoke; Yoel Rozenkier, 35 Downhill; Maor Levi, Virginity; Yakov Zeda-Daniel, Valeria is Getting Married

Will Win: This is Sason Gabays to lose. Even if by some chance viewers are unimpressed with the film, his performance shines bright. If he wins he'll become the first actor in history to win 4 Ophirs. He previously won forTime For Cherries(1990),The Band's Visit(2007), andGett(2014).The Band's Visitwas, of course, very popular in its US theatrical release (eventually inspiring a Tony winning Broadway musical), though it was disqualified as an Oscar submission in its year due to too much English dialogue spoken in the film.

Moris Cohen in THE SILENCECould win: Moris Cohen is great in The Silence, and he managed to get a nomination even though the film was largely shut out. But did enough people see the film? Should Win: Sason Gabay, without a doubt.

Best ActressDana Ivgy, Savoy; Dana Ivgy, Cinema Sabaya; Levana Finkelstein, The Silence; Lena Frifeld, Valeria is Getting Married; Rita Shukrun, Karaoke

Sason Gabay and Rita Shukrun in KARAOKE

Will Win: Its hard to imagine Gabay winning without Rita Shukrun also taking the prize the film works because of their chemistry and dynamic. Also, Ophir voters tend to be a bit unimaginative; If they like a film, they vote for it across the board.

Could Win: That said the Ophirs really love Dana Ivgy, and may want to give her a 4th Ophir to cement her place within the Academy but will they know which of her performances to choose? Lena Frifelds excellent turn in Valeria I'm guessing is a close third.Should Win: Strong options, but I would personally vote for Dana Ivgys turn in Cinema Sabaya.

Supporting ActorAvraham Shalom Levy, Valeria is Getting Married; Doron Tavori, The Gospel According to Judas; Dean Miroshnikov, Like There is No Tomorrow; Lior Ashkenazi, Karaoke; Moni Moshonov, All I Can Do; Shmuel Vilozni, 35 Downhill

Shmuel Vilozni and (leading man) Yoel Rozenkier in 35 DOWNHILL

Will Win: Shmuel Vilozni is the heart of 35 Downhill, a father and son drama, and they liked the film enough to give it 11 nominations. Since Lior Ashkenazi is the weaker link in Karaoke, Im betting on Vilozni.

Could Win: But a Karaoke clean sweep could happen easily and Ashkenazi is very popular. If he wins, it'll be his fourth Ophir (he previously won for Late Marriage,Footnote, and Foxtrot all of which were Israeli Oscar submissions with Footnote becoming an Oscar nominee).

Should win: A toss up between the Tavori and Miroshnikov both great in very different roles. But I have to choose, Tavori by a hair. Its that voice so commanding yet reaffirming.

Supporting ActressAviva Negosa, 35 Downhill; Esty Zakheim, The Silence; Joanna Sayid, Cinema Sabaya; Moran Rosenblat, Like There Is No Tomorrow; Tiki Dayan, Children of Nobody

Will Win: In a cast of mostly anonymous actors, Joanna Sayid stands out. Given the film's multiple nominations, it makes sense to award its standout character.Could Win: Ophir voters so sometimes fixate on young women that flirt with the Hero and/or the audiences expectations. Aviva Negosa could benefit from this in 35 Downhill. Should Win: Esty Zakheim is great (as always) in The Silence in the role of the Ex-wife who still has a good (non-romantic) relationship with the protagonist. She brings much needed heart to a film that sometimes feels akward.

Best ScreenplayVirginity, Karaoke, 35 Downhill, Savoy, Cinema Sabaya, Karaoke, Valeria is Getting Married

Will Win: I may be contradicting myself, but Im gonna go a limb and say that the Ophir doesn't go with a fullKaraokesweep, and that theyll give the Screenplay to Yona Rozenkier for35 Downhill. They liked the film a bunch, it won at the Jerusalem Film Festival and Rozenkier is a well liked figure in the industry.

Could Win: but a clean sweep forKaraokeis a too real possibility.

VALERIA IS GETTING MARRIEDShould Win: Valeria is Getting Married has a premise which fills you with dread. But the film surprises you and is brimming with life, humor, and humanity all because of its precise screenplay. Cinema Sabaya is also worthy, but as its been said There can only be one.

Have you seen any of these at festivals? Which are you most curious about?

Follow this link:

Who will / should win the Ophirs? - Blog - The Film Experience

Related Posts


Comments are closed.

matomo tracker