Are you kiddin' me? Verhoeven's great ELLE gets snubbed, Xavier Dolan's atrocious IT'S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD makes the cut of the 9 shortlisted films for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar

Well, what can I say ... "Toni Erdmann," and "The Salesman" are very deserving of this list. Saw "My Life as a Zuchinni at Cannes and it's a charmer. "Land of Mine" is a powerful film that I really, truly correlate with TIFF of 2015, but "It's Only the End of the World?" Oh man, that's a stinker. I cannot, for the life of me, think of a worse film to have among these 9 contenders. I can only speculate that Dolan has become a big enough name in Hollywood, where he is currently filming his first American film, that he now just has enough clout to pull this joke off. "Elle" is a great film, I'd say even more deserving than the lightly enjoyable and, at times, stinging satire of "Toni Erdmann," but do people actually "get" the film? I did, but have spoken to a handful of people that did not really care for it or have any real emotional response to its bleakly serious, but comic subject matter.

These far superior films also didn't make the cut and were also beaten by Dolan's low-tier stinker: "Neruda," "From Afar," "Sieranevada," and "Ma Rosa."

It's Only the End of the World (Canada) directed by Xavier Dolan
Tanna (Australia), directed by Bentley Dean, Martin Butler
Land of Mine (Denmark), directed by Martin Zandvliet
Toni Erdmann (Germany), directed by Maren Ade
The Salesman (Iran), directed by Asghar Farhadi 
The King’s Choice (Norway), directed by Erik Poppe
Paradise (Russia), directed by Andrei Konchalovsky
A Man Called Ove (Sweden), directed by Hannes Holm
My Life as a Zucchini (Switzerland), directed by Claude Barras