Oscars: Slovakia Selects 'The Interpreter' for Foreign-Language Category

The film premiered at this year's Berlin International Film Festival.

Slovakia has selected Tlmocnik (The Interpreter), directed by Martin Sulik, as its submission for consideration in the best foreign-language film Oscar category.

Co-produced by Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Austria, The Interpreter centers on 80-year-old translator Ali Ungar, who comes across a book by a former SS officer describing his wartime activities in Slovakia.

Soon Ali realizes that the officer was responsible for executing his parents during World War II. He sets out to take revenge but instead of the officer finds his 70-year-old son, Georg. The two old men, who are apparently different from each other in all possible ways, embark on a bittersweet journey to meet surviving witnesses of the wartime tragedy.

The film premiered in the Berlinale Special section of the Berlin International Film Festival. It opened theatrically in Slovakia on March 1.

Sulik's 2011 film, Cigan (Gypsy), was selected as the Slovak entry in the foreign-language film for the 84th Academy Awards but was not shortlisted. His most successful film to date, 1995's Zahrada (The Garden), won Czech Lion Awards in five categories.

The Interpreter is Slovakia's 22nd foreign-language film Oscar submission since its separation from the Czech Republic in 1993. None of the previous submissions earned nominations.