By Peter Knegt | Indiewire March 25, 2009 at 7:19AM
The Boston Underground Film Festival announced the winners of its 11th annual festival on Sunday night at Tommy Doyle's in Cambridge, Massachusetts. "Modern Love is Automatic," by Brooklyn-based filmmaker Zach Clark, won the Jury Award for Best Feature, while Chusy Haney-Jardine's "Anywhere USA" won the Director's Choice Award for Best Feature.
"We are grateful to have had so many filmmakers this year who embody the true spirit of independent film and audience members who ask such thought-provoking questions," said fest executive director Anna Feder at the awards ceremony. "BUFF not only fosters the careers of first-time filmmakers, but also follows the trajectory of their careers by inviting filmmakers back to showcase their most recent work."
Noted as "a beautiful, meditative, and completely meandering madcap journey through redneck sub-culture in the Anywhere town of Asheville, North Carolina" by the fest, "Anywhere USA" won the Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival in 2008 where Quentin Tarantino called it "one of the most moving experiences at the festival. " "Modern Love Is Automatic," described by the fest as "about an apathetic nurse who moonlights as a dominatrix, her aspiring model roommate, and the sad, strange world they inhabit," premiered nearly simultaneously at SXSW.
Additional awards went to William Hoffman's "Thumbnail," which won the Director's Choice Award for Best Short, while Noah Blumenson-Cook received the most promising New England filmmaker award for "O, Scorpio," a music video for the band Jaggery. Winners of the festival's awards for best features receive Bacchus, the festival's signature vibrating bunny statuette.
The festival's five directors select the Director's Choice awards. The Jury Awards are selected by a panel of judges, including DreadCentral.com co-founder and editor Johnny Butane, Brattle Theater Creative Director Ned Hinkle, Boston Phoenix writer Shaula Clark, Emerson College Assistant Film Professor Miranda Banks, and Montreal-based director Karim Hussain (winner of last year's best director for "La Belle Bete").
The complete list of award winners:
Best of Fest (Feature): MODERN LOVE IS AUTOMATIC, directed by Zach Clark (USA)
Honorable Mention: MORRIS COUNTY, directed by Matthew Garret (USA)
Best of Fest (Short): TREEVENGE, directed by Jason Eisner (Canada)
Honorable Mention: THE SCAVENGERS, directed by Corey Bowles (Canada)
Most Effectively Offensive: MAVELA (My Love Lives in the Sewers), directed by Manuel Arija de la Cuerda (Spain)
Honorable Mention : THE GINGERBREAD HOUSE, directed by Claudio Centimeri (Italy)
Special Jury Prize: EXCISION, directed by Richard Bates, Jr. (USA)
Honorable Mention: FAR OUT, directed by Phil Mucci (USA)
DIRECTOR'S CHOICE AWARDS
Best Feature: ANYWHERE USA, directed by Chusy Haney-Jardine (USA)
Honorable Mention: THE ROCK-AFIRE EXPLOSION, directed by Brett Whitcomb (USA)
Best Short: THUMBNAIL., directed by William Hoffman (USA)
Honorable Mention:ELECTRIC FENCE, directed by Matt O'Mahoney (Canada)
Most Promising New England Filmmake : O SCORPIO, directed by Noah Blumenson Cook (USA)