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Berlinale names doco best film

This year’s Berlinale came to a close with doco Fuocoammare (Fire at Sea) taking the Golden Bear, an appropriate choice for an edition that was strong on politics, both on and offscreen.

Fuocoammare (Fire at Sea) examines Europe’s current refugee problem, specifically on the island of Lampadusa, the first European soil on which many refugees set foot.

Absent from the festival were several of the Korean contingent which usually travels to represent the Busan Festival. Very much the subject of political interference since its 2014 edition screened The Truth Shall Not Sink With Sewol, organisers continue to fight for independence after ongoing actions by Busan’s mayor.

From Berlin, filmmakers and festival organisers including Cannes Thierry Fremaux sent a statement of solidarity with Busan. In Susan, the mayor, who chairs the festival, offered to step down as chair but remains determined to take festival director Lee Yong-kwan with him. Lee’s current term expires this Friday and (as chair) the mayor has right of veto over the appointment of the festival director.

By recent standards, there was a dearth of NZ selections for the festival this year. Born to Dance, playing in the Generation line-up, announced deals early in the market, Mahana opened to disappointing reviews, except for this out-of-step one from The Jerusalem Post.

Also not much loved by critics was Lav Diaz’s Silver Bear winner, A Lullaby To The Sorrowful Mystery. “The film was 17 years in the making,” said Diaz. “It picks up after the first three hours,” said Variety, which considered it “stony, audience-opposed self-indulgence”. .

The Berlinale ran 11 – 21 February. This year’s winners were:

Golden Bear for Best Film
Fuocoammare (Fire at Sea), Gianfranco Rosi

Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize
Smrt u Sarajevu (Death in Sarajevo), Danis Tanovic

Silver Bear Alfred Bauer Prize
for a feature film that opens new perspectives
Hele Sa Hiwagang Hapis (A Lullaby to the Sorrowful Mystery), Lav Diaz

Silver Bear for Best Director
Mia Hansen-Løve for L‘avenir (Things to Come)

Silver Bear for Best Actress
Trine Dyrholm, Kollektivet (The Commune) by Thomas Vinterberg

Silver Bear for Best Actor
Majd Mastour, Inhebbek Hedi (Hedi) by Mohamed Ben Attia

Silver Bear for Outstanding Artistic Contribution
Tomasz Wasilewski, Zjednoczone stany miłości (United States of Love)

Silver Bear for Outstanding Artistic Contribution
Mark Lee Ping-Bing
for the cinematography in Chang Jiang Tu (Crosscurrent) by Yang Chao

Best First Feature Award
Inhebbek Hedi (Hedi) by Mohamed Ben Attia
 
 
 
Prizes of the Youth Jury in the Competition Generation 14plus
Crystal Bear for the Best Film:

Es esmu šeit (Mellow Mud), Renārs Vimba, Latvia 2016
Special Mention:
Las plantas (Plants), Roberto Doveris, Chile 2015

Crystal Bear for the Best Short Film:
Balcony, Toby Fell-Holden, Great Britain 2015
Special Mention
Kroppen är en ensam plats (The Body Is a Lonely Place), Ida Lindgren, Sweden 2016

Prizes of the Generation 14plus International Jury
The Grand Prix of the Generation 14plus International Jury for the Best Film
Las plantas (Plants), Roberto Doveris, Chile 2015
Special Mention:
Zhaleika, Eliza Petkova, Germany 2016

Special Prize of the Generation 14plus International Jury for the Best Short Film
O noapte in Tokoriki (A Night in Tokoriki), Roxana Stroe, Romania 2016
Special Mention:
Kroppen är en ensam plats (The Body Is a Lonely Place), Ida Lindgren, Sweden 2016
 
 
 
Prizes of the International Short Film Jury
Golden Bear for Best Short Film

Balada de um Batráquio (Batrachian’s Ballad), Leonor Teles

Silver Bear Jury Prize (Short Film)
A Man Returned, Mahdi Fleifel

Audi Short Film Award
Jin zhi xia mao (Anchorage Prohibited), Chiang Wei Liang

Berlin Short Film Nominee for the European Film Awards 2016
A Man Returned, Mahdi Fleifel

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