Filmed on the real locations where the events took placr, Argentina, 1985 is inspired by the true story of Julio Strassera, Luis Moreno Ocampo and their young legal team of unlikely heroes in their David-vs-Goliath battle to prosecute Argentina’s bloodiest military dictatorship against all odds and in a race against time to bring justice to the victims of the Military Junta. In the nascent days of the Argentine Republic’s newly formed government after the restoration of democracy in 1983, newly appointed federal chief prosecutor Julio César Strassera (Ricardo Darin) and his assistant, deputy prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo, (Peter Lanzani) led the investigation and the trial against the brutal military dictatorship that plunged Argentina into chaos for almost ten years. And entrusted with the Herculean task of putting the country’s most powerful and dangerous men behind bars, the young lawyers and their inexperienced legal team played with fire while seeking justice for the crimes committed during the Dirty War of 1976-1983. Argentina, 1985 is the 2023 winner of the Golden Globe® winner for Best Picture (Foreign Language) and an Oscar® nomination for Best International Feature. Director and screenwriter Santiago Mitre joins us for a conversation on the cinematic challenge of finding the most effective way to tell the story behind the struggle to bring a measure of justice to the authoritarian leadership that ruled his beloved country, injecting a degree of humanity and humor into the film, working with his superb cast of actors and his personal satisfaction of seeing Argentinians embrace his film.
Academy Award nominated – Best International Feature
Golden Globe winner – Best Foreign Film
Goya Award winner – Best Latin American Film
BAFTA nominee – Best Feature in Foreign Language
About the filmmaker – Director, Producer, Screenwriter Santiago Mitre is a screenwriter and director, was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He studied and graduated from the Universidad del Cine (FUC). In 2004 he co-directed El amor – primera parte with his colleagues Alejandro Fadel, Martín Mauregui and Juan Schnitman, a feature film that was presented at BAFICI and the Settimana Internazionale della Critica in Venice. Two years later, he began writing for film and television. It was during that time that he wrote three feature films that ended up “in competition” at the world renown Cannes Film Festival from 2008 to 2012. In 2008, Leonera was nominated for the prestigious Palme d’Or award; in 2010 Carancho was nominated for the Un Certain Regard Award and in 2012 Elefante Blanco also received an Un Certain Regard Award. In 2011, Mitre partnered with Agustina Llambí Campbell, Alejandro Fadel and Martín Mauregui, to found the independent production company La Unión de los Ríos. They went on to produce Mitre’s first feature film as a director, El Estudiante in 2011. The production participated in festivals around the world and won several awards. In April 2013, he presented the medium-length film Los Posibles, co-directed with Juan Onofri Barbato at BAFICI. His second feature, Paulina, premiered in the La Semaine de la Critique section of the 2015 Cannes Film Festival. It went on to win the Grand Prix for Best Film and the Fipresci Award. In 2017, Mitre directed an Argentine thriller, La Cordillera. His most recent film, Argentina, 1985 has won numerous awards worldwide, as well as a nomination for the 2023 Oscar® in the Best International Feature category.
“An entertaining biopic about recent Argentine history that takes the baton from Shakespeare’s idea that “some men have greatness thrust upon them.” – Sophie Monks Kaufman, IndieWire
“A courtroom drama with a committed, awards-worthy performance from Ricardo Darin, this tense, lengthy film stands with the best of the genre, but with added resonance.” – Fionnuala Halligan, Screen International
“Though the dramatic atmosphere could hardly be denser, it’s also pierced by surprising shafts of comedy; there is courage to be had, Mitre reminds us, in preserving a lightness of heart.” – Anthony Lane, New York Times
“Apart from the moving testimonies of surviving victims, the movie’s power comes from the desperate needs for justice and to prevent this authoritarian, terrorist scourge from ever taking hold again.” – Michael Ordoña, Los Angeles Times
“It’s a forthright, muscular and potent movie.” – Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian