Winners of the 16th Black Nights Film Festival were announced.
The Grand Prix of the 16th Black Nights Film Festival was awarded to the Ukrainian film House with a Turret, the Tridens Herring competition prize was awarded to Everybody's Gone and the prize for the best Estonian film went to Mushrooming.
Described by the jury as a haunting work of cinematic art that brings us face to face with the hardships of war through the eyes of an innocent child, House with a Turret by Eva Neymann also received the best cinematographer award for Rimvydas Leipus as effortless, humble and yet, extremely evocative and potent.
The jury members Karen Young (USA), Alar Kivilo (Estonia / Canada), Jan Erik Holst (Norway), Yonghi Yang (Japan) and Laila Pakalnina (Latvia) selected the best EurAsian film from 20 films for the ninth edition of the competition at the Black Nights. It is awarded with 10 000 euros by the city of Tallinn.
The award for best director went to Kyu-Hwan Jeon (The Weight, South Korea) who never wavering from his singular poetic style, deftly pulls the audience through a barrage of painful and extreme imagery into what in the end is a very touching film about love and acceptance.
Best actor Michal Urbaniak (My Father’s Bike, Poland) endears us with his subtle embodiment of an old man, who after a lifetime of mistakes, realizes that in order to gently nudge his family back on track, he must make some changes. He does all this in a wonderful organic way, never losing the tired, but mischievous twinkle in his eye.
Best actress Franziska Petri (Betrayal, Russia) “Hidden behind Franziska Petri’s intense catlike eyes is a powerful and fearless performance that surprises and captivates at every turn.”
Halima’s Path by Arsen Anton Ostojic deserved a special mention by the jury of official competition.
Tridens Herring competition of the Baltic Sea Region feature debuts took place for the first time with the main prize, the Big Fish award for the best film (scholarship of 5000 euros) going to Everybody's Gone by Georgi Paradzhanov, (Russia, Georgia, Czech Republic). The jury acknowledges the striking imagery, vivid characterisations and cinematic poetry with which a skilful director explores collective and individual memory.
The Red Herring for the bravest film was awarded to the German debut Oh Boy by Jan Ole Gerster - a film that uses great wit, insight and economy of expression to evoke a recognizable experience of contemporary alienation. Elen Lotman from Estonia received the best cinematographer award for The Demons – a visual design that is filled with energy, expressiveness and exciting detail. The new competition included 13 films.
North American independent film competition jury selected For Ellen by So Young Kim (USA) as the best film - a beautiful and meaningful story, led by strong performances by all the actors involved.
International Federation of Film Critics FIPRESCI award for the best film went to The Daughter by Aleksandr Kasatkin and Natalya Nazarova from Russia for its multidimensional treating of actual questions like religious extremism, guilt, confrontation of different value systems and circulation of violence in closed societies on the base of a convincing and touching acting.
FICC jury award Don Quijote was given to Keep Smiling by Rusudan Chkonia (Georgia / France / Luxembourg) – a humoric, empathic, intelligent and public-pleasant film, which exactly describes media-based society’s absurdity in the crossroads of Europe and Asia.
NETPAC jury described the award winner Wadjda by Haifaa Al-Mansour (Saudi Arabia / Germany) as a bold movie with an uplifting spirit, narrated in a simple, touching and masterful way. Wadjda also received a special mention by FICC jury.
The audience award of 2000 euros donated by the city of Tallinn and promotion with TV channel Silver went to Oh Boy (Director Jan Ole Gerster, Germany).
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* - Information obtained from the festival web page