Xhuvani's comedy follows collapse of Communism

A comic satire on the collapse of the regime of Albania’s Communist dictator Enver Hoxha, “East West East” (Lindje perendim lindje) is that country’s choice for a nomination in Oscar’s foreign language category.

Directed by Gjergj Xhuvani, the film picked up the best director nod at last year’s Tirana Film Festival while the cast won a special actor award.

Chosen by a committee from the Albanian National Center for Cinematography, pic follows a national cycling team who get the chance to compete in France, in the virtually unknown capitalist West, only to find themselves stranded enroute in Italy as the society they left behind ceases to exist overnight with the fall of its leader.

With a strong performance by an ensemble cast, the film is a comic and fond look back to the mid-1980s when the country was plunged into chaos that brought it to the brink of anarchy.

Submissions for the foreign language Oscar must reach the Academy by 5 p.m. Oct. 1. Nominations will be announced on Jan. 25. The 83rd Academy Awards will be held at the Kodak Theater on Feb. 27.

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