Tigers Roar During International Rotterdam Fest

by Aaron Krach

The Rotterdam Film Festival concluded its 27th festival Saturday, awarding
three new directors the Tiger Award. Petr Zelenka, "Knoflikari" (Czech
Republic); Guiseppe Gaudino, "Giro di Lune Tra Terra E Mare" (Italy), and
Stefan Ruzoqitzky "Die Siebtelbauern" (Austria) shared the top prize and
each received $10,000, as this year's festival continued its tradition of
focusing on international cinema. "Frost" by Fred Kelemen, Germany and
"First Love, Last Rites," by Jesse Peretz, United States shared the
FIPRESCI Award given by a jury of international critics. The Circle of
Dutch Film Journalists awarded its prize to Harmony Korine's, "Gummo", and
the fipresci jury also awarded a special jury citation to "Motel Cactus" by
South Korea's Park Ki-Yong. The NETPAC Award for the promotion of Asian
Cinema went to "Dance of the Wind," by Rajan Khosa, India, and a special
jury citation was awarded to South Korea's Lee Chong-Dong for "Green Fish".
The Citroen Audience Award was given to the Dutch film, "The Polish Bride",
by Karim Traidia, marking the first time a Dutch film has taken home the
audience award.

Box Office receipts exceeded US$675,000, up $75,000 over 1997, while
festival attendance grew by 25,000 admissions. According to the festival's
press release, the jury was particularly impressed with the quality of the
competition films. "The Tiger selection had many ambitious films
encouraging for the future of the art cinema. We particularly noted a
mixture of techniques from different disciplines, including an extensive
use of the avant garde."