The 2010 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival in Missoula, Montana announced their winners February 18.
Chinese-Canadian director Lixin Fan took home the Best Feature prize for his drama “Last Train Home,” following its win for the same award at the Amsterdam International Documentary Film Festival in 2009. Big Sky jurors Doug Pray, Jeanie Finlay and Cliff Froehlich had this to say about the film: “a beautiful, very human journey into vast modern China, migrant workers, the global economy, family politics, obligatory holiday travel, and the universal phenomenon of the sullen teen.” Judges for the seventh Big Sky Award selected Joseph Aguirres’s “Next Year Country,” which follows three families dealing with the drought in Eastern Montana. The two awards guarantee each film a broadcast deal and licensing fee from Free Speech TV.
The Artistic Vision Award went to Josh Fox’s “Gasland,” winner of a Special Jury Prize at this year’s Sundance. Charlene Music’s “The Old Immigrants Dance,” meanwhile, was awarded Best Short Film. Of the film, the jurors wrote: “in simple, unpretentious and elegantly framed sequences, this alternately serious and playful film shows us the challenges that the subjects face, but more important, shows them as full human beings, with strength and spirit, sexuality and zest for life.” Along with the award, The Documentary Channel guaranteed the film a broadcast guarantee and licensing fee.