Two war-inspired films took top honors at the 5th Tribeca Film Festival. “Blessed by Fire” (Iluminados por el Fuego) by Tristan Bauer and U.S. director Deborah Scranton‘s “The War Tapes” won the Best Narrative Feature prize and Best Documentary Feature prize respectively during an awards dinner this evening (Saturday) in Chinatown in Lower Manhattan. “Fire,” (Argentina, Spain) is based on the memoir of a veteran of the Falklands Islands War between Argentina and the U.K. in the early ’80s, while present-day Iraq is the backdrop for “War Tapes,” which chronicles the stories of several members of a National Guard unit deployed to Iraq sharing their experiences and lives from their point-of-view. Also taking honors this evening were Marwan Hamed for “The Yacoubian Building” for Best New Narrative Filmmaker (Egypt) and Pelin Esmer for “The Play,” which took Best New Documentary Filmmaker (Turkey).
The New York Loves Film Documentary prize went to Dan Lohaus‘ “When I Came Home.” The film centers on Iraq war veteran Herold Noel who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and lives out of his car in Brooklyn. Both the director and Mr. Noel took the award Saturday evening and gave a short, but emotional acceptance. “I never thought I’d do a documentary about homeless Iraqi war veterans, but we’ve got them, and we have them here in [New York],” said Lohaus. But it was Noel who brought the audience to its feet with a moving speech about the war and its personal toll, thanking the Tribeca Film Festival for giving him strength. “I thought nobody cared,” he said. Closing out the ceremonial part of the evening after accepting his best narrative feature award, Bauer seemed to provide the popular sentiment of the crowd. “Please… no more war in the world. No more war in Iraq.”
The full list of the Tribeca Film Festival winners:
The Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature: “Blessed By Fire” (Iluminados por el Fuego), directed by Tristan Bauer, Argentina, Spain.
Best Documentary Feature: “The War Tapes,” directed by Deborah Scranton, USA.
Special Documentary Jury Prize: “Voices of Bam,” directed by Aliona van der Horst and Maasja Ooms, Netherlands.
Outstanding achievement in documentary to ” Jesus Camp,” directed by Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady, USA; “Jonestown:The Life and Death of Peoples Temple,” directed by Stanley Nelson, USA; “MAQUILOPOLIS: city of factories,” directed by Vicky Funari and Sergio de la Torre, USA/Mexico.
Best New Narrative Filmmaker: Marwan Hamed for “The Yacoubian Building” (Omaret Yacoubian), Egypt
Best New Documentary Filmmaker: Pelin Esmer for “The Play” (Oyun), Turkey.
Best Actor in a Narrative Feature Film: Juergen Vogel in “The Free Will” (Der Freie Wille), Germany.
Special mention to Adel Imam, “The Yacoubian Building” (Omaret Yacoubian), Egypt.
Best Actress in a Narrative Feature Film: Eva Holubova in “Holiday Makers” (Ucastnici zajezdu), Czech Republic.
Special mention to the ensemble cast of “Holiday Makers” (Ucastnici zajezdu).
NY Loves Film Documentary: “When I Came Home,” directed by Dan Lohaus, USA.
Honorable mention to Jack Smith and the “Destruction Of Atlantis,” directed by Mary Jordan, USA and “The Cats of Mirikitani,” directed by Linda Hattendorf, USA.
Best Made in New York Narrative Feature: “The Treatment,” directed by Oren Rudavsky, USA.
Honorable mention to “A Very Serious Person,” directed by Charles Busch, USA.
Best Narrative Short: “The Shovel,” directed by Nick Childs, USA.
Special mention to “Topor and Me” (Topor et moi), directed by Sylvia Kristel, Netherlands.
Best Documentary Short: “Native New Yorker,” directed by Steve Bilich, USA.
Student Visionary Award: “Dead End Job,” directed by Samantha Davidson Green, USA.
Audience Award: “The Cats of Mirikitani,” directed by Linda Hattendorf, USA.
Tribeca Film Institute/Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Screenplay Development Winners:
Signature series: “The Starry Messenger,” screenwriter Kenneth Lonergan
Main program: “Project Mustard,” Screenwriter Ban Zeff and Producer Andrew Bendel and “Challenger,” screenwriter Nicole Perlman.
Tribeca All Access Creative Promise Award for Narrative Feature: “Before the Beast Returns” by Sterlin Harjo.
Tribeca All Access Creative Promise Award for Documentary Feature: “Outside the Box” by Lacey Schwartz.
Honorable mention – “Free Angela & All Political Prisoners” by Shola Lynch.
Tribeca All Access Creative Promise Award for screenwriting: Milton Liu for “John Hughes Ruined My Life.”
Honorable mention – Ose Oyamendan for “Resistance.”