FIPRESCI Winners From Pusan, Chicago, Ghent and
Mannheim-Heidelberg fests; Cork Winners
by Mark Rabinowitz
>> FIPRESCI Winners
The International Film Critics (FIPRESCI) have announced their prizes
for the Chicago, Pusan, Ghent and Mannheim-Heidelberg International Film
Festivals, with Special Mentions being given out by the critics group at
all of those fests, as well. The buzz aound the indie film world was
that South Korea's Pusan International Film Festival was fast becoming a
player on the world film fest circuit, and this year's FIPRESCI's jury,
compused of president Tadao Sato from Japan, Kim Foss from Denmark,
Angel Comas from Spain and Ahn Byung-Sup from Korea, gave their award to
the Japanese film "Ikinai" by Hiroshi Shimizu "for a corrosive and
tender black comedy about death." Special mentions went to two Korean
films, "Spring in my Hometown," by Lee Kwang-mo, "for the director's
mature approach to the consequences or recent Korean history on common
people's lives"; and to "Christmas in August," by Jin-Ho Hur, "for its
unusually delicate and touching way of treating a love story about fate,
love and death".
The FIPRESCI jury at the Ghent fest, including president Ziva Emersic
Mali from Slovenia, Ronnie Pede from Belgium, Gunter H. Jekubzik from
Germany, Clas Osterholm from Sweden and Andree Tournes from France, gave
its award to Bill Condon's "Gods and Monsters," from the United States.
The jury awarded the prize "for [the film's] multilayered and masterly
portrait of James 'Frankenstein' Whale, the Hollywood myth, against the
background of human relations and history". The Special Mention again
went to "Christmas in August" by Jin-Ho Hur Korea, "for its quiet and
sublty detailed way of telling the story of a man facing death and thus
rejecting the love and life, proposed to him by a young woman".
At the Mannheim-Heidelberg International Film Festival in Germany, the
FIPRESCI prize was awarded to "Titinaki-Jidai" ("Fatherless") by
Yoshihisa Shigeno from Japan "for its courage and outstanding personal
commitment to portray the reality of life with authenticity and
honesty". The Special Mention went to "Let's get lost" by Denmark's
Jonas Elmer "for its light-hearted and gentle perspective on human
nature, its frailties and hopes." The jury at Mannheim-Heidelberg was
composed of Dietrich Kuhlbrodt from Germany, Shoma A. Chatterjee from
India, Elena Stichova from Russia, Daniela Stanikova from the Czech
Republic and Ricci Scheldwacht from the Netherlands.
A Russian film, "Okraina" ("The Outskirts") by Peter Lutsik Russia,
picked up the FIPRESCI prize. According to the jury, composed of
president Sandor Korospataki from Hungary, Carlo Gentile from Italy,
Sang-Myon Lee from Korea, Lisa Nesselson from France and Bill Stamets
from United States, the prize was given to the film "for its ironic
recycling of classic Soviet cinema in addressing a modern crisis." The
Special Mention went to "Serial Lover," by James Huth from France, "for
its rude glee and madcap mise-en-scene in depicting terminal dating
amongst career women."
>> Cork Fest Winners
The Murphy's Cork Film Festival wrapped up on October 18th, by honoring
a number of Irish and international films. Among the awards for Irish
films was the Claire Lynch Award for Best First Short Film, which went
to "Seven Days 'Til Sunday," directed by Patrick Jolley, while the Best
Irish Short Film went to "Patterns," directed by Kirsten Sheridan. The
Audience Award for Best Irish Short Film went to "Lipservice," by Paul
Mercier, while the Examiner Award for the best film Made In Cork, went
to "Identity," by Jon Patrick. In addition, the festival awarded
"Special Commendations" to "Cell," by Audrey Concannon; "Lipservice," by
Paul Mercier; "Roots and Wings," directed by Audrey O'Reilly; "Saoirse,"
by Brendan J. Byrne, and "They Also Serve," by Marin Fulgosi.
Among international films, the award for Best Black & White Film went to
French director Michel Gondry, for "The Letter," while the Best Black &
White Cinematography award went to "Hell For Leather," directed by
Dominik Scherrer from Switzerland. The Best European Short Film award
went to "Guy's Dog," directed by Rory Bresnihan from Ireland and the
Best International Short Film award was given to "Tears," by Ivan Sen
from Australia. In addition, Special Commendations went to "The Hole,"
by Brian Challis from New Zealand; Australian director Erica Glynn for
"My Bed Your Bed"; "A Regular Thing," directed by Louise Andreasen from
Denmark, and "Shelter," directed by Diego Panich from Argentina.