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Film still from "Labyrinth of Lies," Copyright: "picture-alliance/dpa/Ulrich/CWP Film/Universal Pictures
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/Ulrich/CWP Film/Universal Pictures

German film on Auschwitz trials makes Oscars shortlist

December 18, 2015

"Labyrinth of Lies," a film dealing with post-war Germany, is one of the nine films selected from the 81 eligible submissions for Best Foreign Language Film at the Academy Awards this year.


Germany's official submission, "Labyrinth of Lies" ("Im Labyrinth des Schweigens"), directed by Giulio Ricciarelli, just moved forward in the Oscars race in the category Best Foreign Film, as the Academy Awards organizers revealed on Thursday (17.12.2015).

Among this shortlist of nine films, a selection of five foreign film nominees will be made public on January 14, 2016.

"Labyrinth of Lies" deals with a relatively uncovered chapter of German post-war history: the Auschwitz trials in Frankfurt.

The main protagonist of the film is a fictitious public prosecutor, Johann Radmann - in real life, Joachim Kügler (1926-2012). Georg Friedrich Vogel (1926-2007) drove the investigations. Despite political and social opposition in Germany in the 1950s, they embarked on a search for the truth surrounding the Nazi atrocities committed at the Auschwitz concentration camp.

Alexander Fehling, in the lead role, received the Bavarian Film Award for Best Actor in 2015.

Also on the shortlist is "Son of Saul," a Hungarian film by Laszlo Nemes on the Holocaust showing uncompromising depictions of the gas chambers of Auschwitz. It was the runner-up Grand Prize at the Cannes Film Festival.

The other foreign films to make the shortlist are:

- Belgium, "The Brand New Testament," by Jaco Van Dormael;

- Colombia, "Embrace of the Serpent," by Ciro Guerra;

- Denmark, "A War," by Tobias Lindholm;

- Finland, "The Fencer," by Klaus Härö;

- France, "Mustang," by Deniz Gamze Ergüven;

- Ireland, "Viva," by Paddy Breathnach;

- Jordan, "Theeb," Naji Abu Nowar.

The Oscars will be awarded in Los Angeles on February 28, 2016.

eg/rf (dpa, AFP)

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