Miami Festival Honors "Nada Mas," "Bus 174"
by Eugene Hernandez
The Cuban comedy "Nada Mas" and the Brazilian documentary "Bus 174" won the top awards at the 20th Miami International Film Festival, which concluded in South Florida this weekend. Directed by Juan Carlos Cremata Malberti, "Nada Mas" won the dramatic grand jury prize. It is described as "a romantic farce about a bored Cuban postal worker who writes unsolicited replies to random letters while she waits for a visa to the United States." Jose Padilha's "Bus 174," described as "an examination of a botched bus holdup that ended in a standoff between the homeless gunman and a SWAT team," won the documentary jury prize. The jury prize for best short went to Liat Daham's "Climbing Miss Sophie."
FedEx audience awards went to Antonio Hernandez's "En La Ciudad Sin Limites" (dramatic) and Josep Domenech and Carles Bosch's "Balseros" (documentary). The jury prize for Best Iberamerican Drama went to Aldo Garay's "La Espera" from Uruguay and Luis Ortega's "Caja Negra" from Argentina. "La Espera" also won the festival's FIPRESCI film critics prize. Juan Carlos Martin's "Gabriel Orozco" won the prize for best Iberoamerican documentary.
"There was such an abundance of wonderful stories in our competition categories, which made our jurors' jobs both challenging and rewarding," said festival director Nicole Guillemet. "I'm proud that our Festival served as an international showcase for these marvelous, engaging films."
Among other prizes, the jury awarded a Special Jury Citation in the dramatic competition to Helvecio Ratton's "Radio Favela" from Brazil. Also, special recognition awards for short filmmaking went to Shari Frilot for "Strange and Charmed" and Joe Anaya's "Short on Sugar."
[indieWIRE Associate Editor Brian Brooks attended the Miami International Film Festival and will have a festival report in indieWIRE later this week.]