SON OF SAUL (SAUL FIA)
Winner of the Grand Prix at this year's Cannes Film Festival, this sparse yet resonant film resolutely follows one man through the Auschwitz–Birkenau concentration camp in October 1944. Isolated from the rest of the camp, Saul is a Sonderkommando, a member of a unit of prisoners forced to assist in the horrifyingly inhuman process of mass extermination. Bestowed with a sudden burning purpose after discovering the corpse of a young man he claims is his son, Saul becomes determined to give the boy a proper Jewish burial, putting the lives of his companions at risk. Infused with kinetic energy yet remarkably restrained, director László Nemes' film displays a refreshing sense of cinematic control, eschewing exposition and sentimentality to turn this well–worn subject matter into something utterly original, shocking and relentless. A morally sophisticated, astonishing debut, one of the most talked–about films of the year has emerged as a master class in superior filmmaking and emotionally devastating storytelling technique. — Landon Zakheim
Born in Budapest, László Nemes honed his craft working as an assistant director for master Hungarian filmmaker Béla Tarr. Nemes has directed the short films THE COUNTERPART, THE GENTLEMAN TAKES HIS LEAVE and TÜRELEM. SON OF SAUL, his first feature, won the Grand Jury Prize and the FIPRESCI Prize at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival.
Anna J. Takayama
Sony Pictures Classics