MEDFILM FESTIVAL 2016 – XXII EDITION
NOVEMBER 4 – 12| ROME
CINEMA SAVOY / MUSEO MACRO
Festival of National Interest, Key Event in the City of Rome, Festival of Cultural Interest for Mediterranean Forum and Euro-Mediterranean partership.
The 22nd edition of MedFilm Festival ended with a great success determined by the audience’s superb participation, following an intense nine days of cinema and the increased attention by the italian and international press, which has dedicated to the festival reviews, focus, interviews and insights.
With a programme of 90 films, of which 60 italian, european and international premieres, accompanied by many prestigious guests, MedFilm Festival has once again witnessed the diverse cultural and political context that makes the Euro-Mediterranean area unique, offering an open, inclusive and participatory festival model, in which works and authors, as well as the public, press and staff of the festival, are at the center of a cultural and pedagogical project that conducts an encounter, dialogue and sharing ideas, its central point. The contribution offered by the R. Rossellini Institute has been very important, allowing the participation of about fifty of its students called for judging the films in competition as well as conducting interviews with filmmakers and filming the most important moments of the festival, masterclass, literary encounters and debates. Strong and important was also the participation of university students, formed in juries, who worked on selecting the films proposed in the three official categories.
The festival’s closing night saw the awarding of prizes to the winners of the various categories, and in particular the AMORE AND PSICHE AWARD to the iranian film “INVERSION” by Behnam Behzadi, winner of the 22nd Medfilm Festival and of two Collateral prizes attributed by the PiuCulture Jury and the University Jury. For the first time in twenty-two years of festival history, the same film was judged the best of all the jury, and therefore by a transversal and heterogeneous audience, dating back to the age of 17; a sign of the indisputable artistic quality of the opera. In this sense, the iranian film could surely look to the italian market and find its own space and MedFilm Festival will work with increased strength and conviction in search of complementary distribution spaces for this kind of film productions in the Euro-Mediterranean area.
THE JURY has decreed the winners of this edition:
FEATURE FILMS COMPETITION
The jury, consisting of Federico Pontiggia, Angela Prudenzi, Isabella Ragonese, Claudia Bedogni and Tiziana Porto, decided to award the following awards:
AMORE AND PSICHE AWARD FOR BEST FILM: “INVERSION” directed by Behnam Behzadi (Iran)
For the ability to poetically innovate the humanist lesson of Iranian cinema, transforming the suffocating atmospheric climate into a female sun that radiates empathy and hope at every latitude.
SPECIAL JURY AWARD: “KINDIL” directed by Damien Ounouri (Algeria / Kuwait / USA)
For the talent in denouncing reality with stylistic originality, returning to the genre its territory of choice: cinema.
ARTISTIC EXPRESSION AWARD FOR BEST DIRECTION: “LE JARDIN D’ESSAI” by Dania Reymond (France / Algeria)
For the happy and joyful re-affirmation of cinema as a privileged tool for describing and analyzing reality, able to overcome the dramatic legacy of Algeria in its unconditional and confident opening to the future of younger generations.
DOCUMENTARY FILMS COMPETITION
The jury, composed by Roberto Silvestri, Irene Dionisio, Tarek Ben Abdallah, Francesca Bellino and Katia Ippaso, decided to award the following prizes:
OPEN EYES AWARD FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY: “BETWEEN FENCES” directed by Avi Mograbi (Israel / France)
A work that deals with the current and dramatic theme of forced migration with great respect to the figure of the refugee who, entering the play of stage stage fiction, unveils the theater of international cruelty.
SPECIAL MENTION “A MAGICAL SUBSTANCE FLOWS INTO ME” directed by Jumana Manna (Palestine)
A work characterized by the great rigor in the treatment and the strong poetic sense that confirms the absence of borders when entering the territory of music. A trip to the past when Palestine was a single land governed by thousands of music and not by one state.
“ATLAL” directed by Djamel Kerkar (Algeria / France)
A work with the great effect of truth that, following the dramaturgy of time in remaining landscapes and suspended on nothing, shows with poetry the ruins of our time.
“INFORME GENERAL II – EL NUEVO RAPTO DE EUROPA” directed by Pere Portabella (Spain)
The sophisticated contribution of a surrealistic movie senator catalyses the systemic, cultural, economic-financial, political and energetic collapse of a globalized world.
SHORT FILMS COMPETITION
The jury – composed by the students of international cinema schools: Karim Ejjaoui (ISCA – Institut Spécialisé du Cinèma et de Audiovisuel de Rabat – Morocco), Ahmed Fouad (The Egyptian Academy of Art in Rome – Egypt), Iordanis Theodosiadis (Faculty Of the Fine Arts Aristotle University of Thessaloniki – Greece), Mohamed Rachid Mrabet (EDAC – Ecole des Arts et du Cinéma Tunis – Tunisia), Lola Quivoron (La Fémis – École nationale supérieure des métiers de l’image et du son, Paris – France ), Ekaterina Volkova (CSC – Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia di Roma – Italy), Onuray Topaklı (MSFAU – Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University of Istanbul – Turkey), Marina Tebechrani (Faculté des Lettres et Sciences Humaine Saint Joseph, Beirut – Nikica Zdunic (Academy of Dramatic Art University of Zagreb – Croatia) – has decided to award the following awards:
METHEXIS AWARD FOR BEST SHORT FILM: “UMMI” directed by Niko Avgoustidi (Greece)
For the strong emotions and impressions evoked by the film, for its ability to cope with social problems regarding refugees and the way they are welcomed in Europe.
CERVANTES AWARD FOR BEST SHORT FILM: “BATRACHIAN’S BALLAD” directed by Leonor Teles (Portugal)
For intimate and rebellious history, which contributes to the fight for the rights of discriminated minorities, for its strong and original approach to the subject. The film looks like a punk gesture that drives people to reconsider their approach to marginalized communities today.
SPECIAL MENTION: “ESTATE” directed by Ronny Trocket (France / Belgium)
For her original approach that, through the encounter between immobility of the photographic image and the movement, expresses her opinion on the role of the media in the crisis of migrants. A strong criticism of passivity too often demonstrated in situations that would require a much more determined action and response from humans.
The PIUCULTURE AWARD, organized by the online Piuculture newspaper, given by Sarra Labib, Basha Beshai, Moez Chamki, Vladimir Doda, Nibir Mamdudar Rahman, Ghiath Rammo, Spoitoru Nina (six citizens of Rome hailing from Egypt, Tunisia, Albania, Bangladesh, Syria And Moldavia), went to “INVERSION” directed by Behnam Behzadi (Iran).
For having woven with great wisdom and delicacy various problems of current society – from environmental pollution, which remains a cross-section to different countries, to the role of women in Iranian society. All this is made even stronger by a good acting that refrains from any victimization to seize the most subtle and essential elements. A well-written and well-directed film, rich and full of life.
University of Rome – La Sapienza (Oriental Languages and Civilizations and Art History and Performing Arts), Roma Tre (Department of Philosophy, Communication and Performing Arts), Tor Vergata (Department of Cultural Heritage Education and Society), John Cabot University and National Academy of Dramatic Art Silvio d’Amico, have decided to give the following awards:
BEST FILM: “INVERSION” directed by Behnam Behzadi (Iran)
For the ability to ask questions about their own identity, whether it is dictated by the environment and traditions, or a feeling intimate. Analyzing the breaking up of modernity and technology into secular culture, the film drives a self-critical reflection on individual and collective freedom.
BEST FILM: “KINDIL” directed by Damien Ounouri (Algeria / Kuwait / USA)
For experimental courage and social denunciation through the horror genre.
BEST DOCUMENTARY: “ZAINEB HATES THE SNOW” directed by Kaouther Ben Hania (Tunisia)
For the originality with which it was designed and built, for the spontaneity and irony with which is treated a more contemporary theme than that of integration between different cultures, for the delicacy with which stories and personal relationships develop Able to touch the human side of the spectator.
BEST SHORT FILM: “UMMI” directed by Nikos Avgoustidi (Greece)
It reflects current and current issues, such as the drama of refugees, from the point of view of a child. One of the most successful aspects of the short film is its ability to evoke the raw reality that lurks across the sea.
SPECIAL MENTION: “AIDA” directed by Maysoon El-Massry (Egypt)
For the extraordinary cinematic representation of a humble everyday reality.
R. ROSSELLINI INSTITUTE JURY
BEST FILM: “KINDIL” directed by Damien Ounouri (Algeria / Kuwait / USA)
His aesthetic and fictional elegance makes Kindil a horror film as you have never seen him. Touching the theme of the unreal can make poetic events bloody and current with a criticism visible to society and its choice of punishment against the individual and its subsequent marginalization and derision. Adila Bendimerad can perfectly embody fear, sea, monster, and victim in an elegant dance and movement performance without needing words. In this movie, fear does not make you jump from the chair, but it gets you in, slow and cold.
BEST DOCUMENTARY: “ATLAL” directed by Djamel Kerkar (Algeria / France)
One of the few movies that really has been able to document the truth, without neglecting movie magic.
CINEPHILIA SCREENWRITING LAB FOR SHORTS
Made in collaboration with Cinephilia Productions and led by director Darine Hotait, the lab is a project that aims to help directors develop their storytelling potential, critical faculties and technical skills. The lab wants to promote the most original, visionary and courageous voices from the Middle East and North Africa. The first Italian edition of the Lab selected 5 projects, 3 from the MENA region and 2 from Italy. The jury composed of Darine Hotait, Irene Dionisio and Monica Zapelli has decreed the following winner: “SPINDRIFT” directed by Farah F. Naboulsi and Dalia Yassine (Lebanon).