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Films awarded 2006

Network discoveries: Films awarded by FICC juries 2006

RYNA by Ruxandra Zenide, Romania/Switzerland, 2005
Jury: Aksel Kielland, Norway, A K M Shariful Islam, Bangladesh, John Salisbury, UK/Isle of Wight

BE WITH ME by Eric Khoo / Singapore / 2005 / 93 minutes / 35mm / Colour / Mandarin, Hokkien, English
Dunja Bialas, Germany (president of the jury), Ralph Hofer , Switzerland, Jorunn Store Johansen, Norway

KOTI-IKÄVÄ/HOMESICK, director: Petri Kotwica, Finland, 2005, 85 min.
Jury: Hilde Gaard (
Norway), Christine Müh (Germany) and Jette Carlsen (Denmark)

(18th April -2 May 2006) Don Quijote Prize to: UMA NOITE AO ACASO/NIGHT STORY, Victor Candeias, Portugal 2005, 18 min, Beta SP, Color. Production: Mediterranea Lda (produtora de audiovisuais). Address: Rua Coelho da Rocha, nº 50, 1º Dto 1250-088 Lisbon, info@mediterranea.com.pt , Telephone: +351218120038. The jury comment: Victor Candeias tells a story that diverse into a matter of choices. The characters become marionettes of their own actions. “Uma noite ao acaso” has a cinematic language that we all can relate to. Photography and acting creates a tight atmosphere and the director finds new aspects of a story that seems to be told a lot of times before. A taxi, two briefcases and three men are the central elements of this short film and the tale can be located everywhere. A stranger takes a taxi. When the unexpected happened the relationship between the driver and the passenger evolves and captivate us. A humorous tone and an open ending are factors that convinced us and also showed the directors ability as a storyteller. Jury: Carl Henrik Eilertsen, Norway, Firmina Lopes, Portugal, Holger Tepe, Germany

May 30 –
June 4,  2006.
The FICC/ IFFS JURY Jury awarded DON QUIJOTE PRIZE unanimously to:
Suburban Train / Elektryczka by Maciej Cuske /
Poland / 2005 / 18 minutes
The jury awarded this prize to the film for the sensitivity and delicacy in picturing unusual situations of everyday life. Further details from
FICC/IFFS Jury: Gry Eva Michelson
Norway, Gert Weidenfeld, Germany, Paulina Neugebauer, Poland

14th ART FILM, - International Film Festival,
Trenčianske Teplice, Trenčín, Slovak Republic, June 23 – July 1,  2006.DQ winner: A SOAP/ EN SOAP by Pernile Fischer Christensen / Denmark  / 2006 / 102 minutes / 35mm
Production Co.
Nimbus Films  / Sales Co. Trust Film Sales /
32-year-old Charlotte (Trine Dyrholm) could have it all, but she doesn't want any of it. When she moves away from her boyfriend, she happens to become the upstairs neighbour of the transsexual Veronica (David Dencik). Veronica prefers to keep to herself with her little dog and a romantic soap opera on TV, while
Charlotte gets through her nights with one-night stands. An assault, a new bed and some white curtains bring the two of them together and they end up as the main characters in their own turbulent love story.
The jury commented that “ A story is about two lost people, dealing with existential questions, which could happen in the real life. This chamber-drama located in closed rooms gives a touching view of a meeting between two lifestyles and mentalities. It is marked by outstanding but realistic acting performance, by which the actors display the difficulties in attempts of mutual understanding”.
Special Mention: Vennad Karasüdamed/Brothers Bearhearts, Director:
Riho Unt, Estonia,  2005,  21 min, Producer: Nuku film

Further details from http://www.artfilm.sk/?lang=en&year=2006
FICC/IFFS Jury: Peter Gavalier, Phd.,
Slovak Republic, Veit Geldner, Germany, Thomas Ahlqvist, Sweden

41st KARLOVY VARY INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL, Czech Republic, June 30 – July 8,  2006.The FICC/ IFFS JURY Jury awarded the Don Quijote prize to: REPRISE
by Joachim Trier /
Norway  / 2006 / 105 minutes / 35mm / Colour, Production Co. 4 1 /2  / Sales Co. Nordisk Film International Sales www.sales.nordiskfilm.com/ws/default.asp?main=ok
Erik and Phillip are trying to make it as writers. Erik is rejected by publishers as lacking in talent, while Phillip’s manuscript is accepted and the young man becomes a major name on the Norwegian cultural scene practically overnight. Six months later, Erik and his friends come to visit Phillip at a psychiatric hospital to bring him home after long-term treatment. Writing is the last thing on Phillip’s mind, but Erik is continuing his literary attempts and tries to convince his friend to go back to writing. This film could be seen as a subtle reflection on youth as a time of promise, plans and hopes which gradually dissolve under the impact of life experiences. If the style of the narration is reminiscent of the poetic works of the French New Wave, it’s no coincidence: the director admits to the influence of François Truffaut, in particular, the latter’s Jules and Jim, in which fundamental themes are treated with an enchantingly light touch.The jury was impressed with the lightness of touch exhibited by the director and cast, combined with the depth of characterisation, a combination that is not common in contemporary cinema. This is a portrait of the artist or artists tailored to present daily reality. The narrative structure of the film is effective without being obtrusive. What was perhaps most impressive was the deceptively easy way it was able to present the creative and personal dilemmas of its characters without ever descending into easy melodrama and the way it signalled such easy narrative possibilities without committing to them. The performances of the leading actors were skilfully compatible with the light but probing touch of the director. A highly promising debut.

SPECIAL MENTION: FROZEN CITY/VALKOINENE KAUPUNKI by Aku Louhimies / Finland / 2006 / 90 minutes / 35mm / Colour, Production Co.Solar Film Inc. /  Sales Co. Solar Film Inc.  www.solafilms.com
You might sometimes think that Nordic directors own the patent for ruthlessly depicting partnership wrangles as they really are: extremely bitter fights to the death, fuelled by remnants of the feelings they still have for each other, and also by an irrational desire to hurt the other as far as possible. Frozen City is a raw chronicle of one such battle which has no champions, unfolding in ice-encrusted
Helsinki. When Veli-Matti’s marriage to Hanna breaks down, he moves into a flat in the suburbs. But misfortune continues to plague him – he loses his job as a taxi-driver and the courts have banned him from having any contact with his three children. When his crazy neighbour starts pounding on Veli-Matti’s door every single day, complaining that his curtainless windows are disfiguring the entire housing estate, it becomes clear that all his accumulated despair and resentment will one day lead to something terrible.The jury commented that “this tightly controlled analysis of the destructive and painful collapse of a relationship with exceptional performances from the two principals (especially the chilling and manipulative yet familiar performance of the wife) so impressed the jury that it felt that it had to award it a special mention. The film demonstrates yet again that good stories are more important than big budgets”. Further details from http://www.kviff.com/?lang=en
FICC/IFFS Jury: Michal Ďuríček,
Czech Republic, Marianne Körver, Estonia , Joe McMahon, Ireland

59th LOCARNO INTERNATIONAL FILMFESTIVAL, SwitzerlandAugust 02 – 12,  2006.
The FICC/ IFFS JURY Jury awarded the Don Quijote prize to:
Das Fräulein  by Andrea Staka /
Switzerland  / 2006 / 81 minutes / 35mm / Colour / Swiss German, German, Bosnian, Croat, Serbian. Production Co + Sales Co. /  Dschoint Ventschr Filmproduktion http://www.dschointventschr.ch/dv/stage/filmflyer.php?shortcut=FRAEULEIN&lang=_en
Synopsis: This film explores the universal themes of loneliness and hope in the story of three women whose lives become interwoven with each other. It looks at the loneliness that can be felt by people placed in unfamiliar surroundings and how enjoying life can easily become secondary in this environment. Through the excellent character portrayal by each of the actors, we are shown that people are essentially good and that change can come from unlikely sources to act as a catalyst when you dare to change your life. Further details from http://jahia.pardo.ch/jahia/Jahia/home/site/pardosite/lang/en
Niall Foran, Ireland, Kari Skjerve Bjerkan, Norway, Sabine Girsberger , Switzerland

LUCAS 2006 29TH INTERNATIONAL CHILDREN’S FILMFESTIVALThe Don Quijote prize was awarded to: When the Show Tent Came to My Town / Ookami Shoujo. By Yoshihiro Fukagawa  / Japan  / 2005 / 106 minutes / 35mm / Colour, An Omega Project Co., Ookami Shunojo Film Partners presentation of a Basara Pictures production. (International sales: Basara, Tokyo.) For Akira and his classmates, the days always follow the same pattern: In school there is constant aggravation between him and the other boys, and everyone teases the outsider, the girl Hideko. Then two things happen, which change everything: the smart and beautiful Rumiko comes newly into the class, and a travelling show has set up its tents in town. Soon everyone is sure, that the main attraction, a terrifying wolf-girl, must really be Hideko. Only Rumiko defends her against the suspicions of her classmates. Since Akira has fallen a little bit in love with Rumiko, he too lands up on her side. Nevertheless, he still wants to find out for sure who the wolf-girl really is. When it comes out, that it is in reality the beautiful Rumiko in disguise, the other children at first feel deceived. But soon the school children learn that Rumiko is above all lonely, and that they have all become a sort of family for her. The film leads us into the world of countryside Japan in the 1970s, telling a poetic and atmospheric story about prejudice, trust and friendship, which could also very well be happening today.

The FICC Jury gave the Don Quijote Award to the Film  When the Show Tent Came to my Town / Ookami Shoujo for the following reasons: Courage, faith, friendship, sticking together – whether in class or in your circle of friends – is important. From the beginning, the story captures the young audience, because it is well told. The Japanese film impressively recounts how prejudices against poverty, different looks and being different are being broken down. While Akira and his classmates learn to go up to each other, they understand that tolerance is necessary to be able to maintain long-term friendship.

Special mention: A Year in my Life / Le temps des porte-plumes by Daniel Duval / France / 2006 / 94 minutes / 35mm / Colour
Production Co.Elia Films. /  Sales Co. TFI Film International    www.tf1international.com/ 
With intensive imagery, the film tells the story Summer 1954. The nine year old orphaned boy Pippo has luck: He is adopted by Gustave and Cécile, who own a farm in the countryside. Yet here everything is new and unfamiliar for him. And it is hard for Pippo to settle in. In school he is soon considered a rough and pig-headed boy, because he doesn’t swallow everything. At first Cécile is completely unable to deal with him. She is even thinking about bringing him back to the orphanage. But Pippo also finds friends like the former soldier Pierre or the funny old Alphonsine, who even lets him use her shed so that he could build a flying machine there. For his big dream is to once sail across the sky. He doesn’t tell his foster parents about any of these activities. When there is again aggravation in school, Cécile wants to do what she had previously announced, and drives Pippo back to the orphanage. But then she cannot bring herself to leaving him there. She realizes that in her heart he has already become a son for her. With intensive imagery, the film tells the story of a young boy who struggles to find his place in life.

The FICC Jury is happy to give a laudable mention to the French film  A Year in My Life /  Le temps des porte-plumes. The jury noted that the director uses a delicate and poetic style to tell the story of a child who, after being abandoned, finds the strength to open himself again to new affections and friendship, and to dream about a future.Further details from http://www.lucasfilmfestival.de

FICC/IFFS Jury Kathrin Bublys, Germany, Anna Ganzinelli Neuenschwander, Switzerland, Hilde Kjos, Norway. Please see http://www.lucasfilmfestival.de/2006/jury/jury3_e.html  for more details about the jury members.

No. 36
The Don Quijote prize was awarded to:  «13 Tzameti» by Gela Babluani, France/Georgia. Special Mentions: "Rabbits & Bears" (Hyo Jeong KimSouth Korea, 2005, 21') on the category Students Films. "Terra Incognita" (Peter Volkart, CH, 2005, 15') received a special mention in the category of Shorts Films. FICC jury: Joao Tiago Almeida Filipe (Portugal), Oleksiy Pershko (Ukraine), (jury member form Germany did not show up).

10th TALLINN BACK NIGHTS FILM FESTIVAL, Tallinn, Estonia, November 23 – December 10,  2006.

The FICC/ IFFS JURY Jury awarded the DON QUIJOTE PRIZE unanimously to:
Sons/ SØNNER by Eric Richter Strand / Norway  / 2006 / 90 minutes / 35mm / 100 minutes / Colour / Producer Tordenfilm

Lars is twenty-five and works as an attendant at a swimming pool on the east side of Oslo. His heart is good, but his temper is easily and violently raised. This has caused problems for Lars his whole life. Together with his best friend Jørgen he shares a troubled past. Now Jørgen is on his way into adulthood with his girlfriend and their child, while Lars is living the bachelor life of soccer and beer.

Special Mentions: DarkBlueAlmostBlack /Azuloscurocasinegro, Director Daniel Sánchez Arévalo / Spain / 2006 / Producer Tesela PC, TVE, Canal Plus / Sales Company Sogepaq. After his father suffered a stroke, Jorge was forced to take over his job as a janitor. Having spent the last few years working hard, caring for him and finishing college, now he wants to strike out on his own. Through his imprisoned brother, Antonio, he meets Paula, a woman with whom he develops an unusual relationship which will help Jorge realise that he can change the course of his life if he only wishes to... Climates / Iklimler, Director Nuri Bilge Ceylan / Turkey, France / 2006 / 101 mins / Colour / Producer  CO PRODUCTION LTD. - Yeni Carsi Cad. 48 Galatasaray 34433 Istanbul TURQUIE - contact@coproduction.com.tr - www.climatesmovie.com . Sales: CO PRODUCTION LTD. - T : +90 212 251 32 42 - contact@coproduction.com.tr - www.climatesmovie.com. Man was made to be happy for simple reasons and unhappy for even simpler ones - just as he is born for simple reasons and dies for even simpler ones... Isa and Bahar are two lonely figures dragged through the ever-changing climate of their inner selves in pursuit of a happiness that no longer belongs to them.

Further details from
FICC/IFFS Jury: Svea Pillau, Estonia, Christl Grunwald-Merz, Germany, Edvinas Puksta, Lithuania
For more information on the IFFS jury please see