Where to Watch EO?: Poland’s entry for the upcoming Academy Awards in the best International Feature category, “EO” is possibly the strangest film in the award circle this season. That is not a criticism by any means. In fact, the sheer ambitiousness of the concept of this film deserves nothing but appreciation from the audience.
As per the official synopsis, the center of “EO” happens to be a grey donkey with a pair of melancholic eyes, and the entire film is told from his perspective only. In the eyes of “EO”, our familiar world becomes a strange land through which he travels and meets so many people, some good and some bad. He also manages to experience so many emotions like pain, happiness, and even bliss. However, EO’s innocence never gets lost in this entire process.
The film is actually inspired by the Robert Bresson-directed 1966 French drama “Au Hasard Balthazar” which was also about a donkey being handed over to various owners, most of whom treated him badly. Strangely enough, that film also had its source of inspiration which happens to be a passage from the novel The Idiot, which was written by Fyodor Dostoevsky around the year 1868-69.
Helming “EO” is 84-year-old veteran Polish actor-director Jerzy Skolimowski who is best known for winning the coveted Golden Bear award for the Belgian comedy Le Départ (The Departure) at the 17th Berlin International Film Festival back in 1967. A recipient of Golden Lion in the 2016 Venice Film Festival for his lifetime achievements in cinema, Skolimowski’s acting credits range from David Cronenberg’s gangster drama “Eastern Promises” (2007) to the Marvel Studios mega-blockbuster “The Avengers” (2012). Skolimowski has written the script of “EO” along with Ewa Piaskowska. The duo also happens to produce the film with their respective companies, Skopia Film and Alien Films.
Even with the inspiration, “EO” firmly stands on its own as an original film. Premiering at the Cannes Film Festival in May 2022, it picked up the Jury Prize, along with the Italian Drama “The Eight Mountains.” On Rotten Tomatoes, the film currently has a near-perfect score of 98 based on 45 reviews, most of which have generously showered praise on it.
Along with EO the donkey, the human cast of the film consists of Polish actress Sandra Drzymalska who is known to the international audience for her work in the Netflix original series “Sexify,” along with actor Lorenzo Zurzolo and Mateusz Kościukiewicz. But the cast has a surprisingly big name which is none other than the legendary Isabelle Huppert who is playing a countess in the film.
WHERE TO WATCH AND STREAM “EO” ONLINE?
After premiering at Cannes and subsequently traveling to many prestigious film festivals, “EO” was released in Poland on September 30, 2022. The distributor, Janus Films released the film in a limited number of theatres in the United States on November 18, 2022. Right now, your best bet is to catch it in a movie theatre. To check for theatre listings near you, head over to Fandango.
As far as streaming is concerned, EO is currently not available watch anywhere on the internet. However, one can assume that since Janus Films is handling the distribution, it will eventually land either on HBO Max or on the Criterion Channel. As to when that would be is still unknown. It’s also highly likely that with its increasing popularity at the festival circuit and potential Oscar buzz, it can be predicted that the film will soon appear on Video on Demand services like Amazon, Vudu, etc. Keep a lookout at this space for more updates.