Thursday, May 25, 2017

56th Semaine de la Critique Selection Award Winners

As happened last year for the first time, the Critics' Week is the first parallel section that has their award ceremony and seems trend will stay for the future.

If stays, then will be the shorter major collateral event of the festival.

Most interesting is Charles Tesson, Semaine director, had the most visibility ever and not only was present in many activities -as always- but also presented film and allowed photographs. No doubt his visibility went up a few notches.

I'm always cautious with films in this section but definitively the one that called my attention the most is Los Perros; still know that probably will watch Ava that won an award tonight.

Award winners are in *BLUE.  To check winners at official site go here.

Feature Films

*(*) Ava, Léa Mysius, France SACD Award Winner
*Gabriel e a montanha (Gabriel and the Mountain), Fellipe Gamarano Barbosa, France and Brazil France4 Visionary Award Winner and Gan Foundation Award for Distribution Winner
(*) La Familia, Gustavo Rondón Córdova, Venezuela, Chile and Norway
Los Perros, Marcela Said, Chile and France
*Makala, Emmanuel Gras, France (documentary) Grand Prix Winner
(*) Oh Lucy!, Atsuko Hirayanagi, Japan and USA
(*) Tehran Taboo, Ali Soozandeh, Germany and Austria (animation)

Special Screenings
Opening FilmSicilian Ghost Story, Fabio Grassadonia and Antonio Piazza, Italy and France
Closing Film: Brigsby Bear, Dave McCary, USA
Petit Paysan (Bloody Milk), Hubert Charuel, France
Une Vie Violente (A Violent Life), Thierry de Peretti, France

(*) First Film. Competing for the Camera d'Or.

Short Films

Ela - Szkice na pozegnanie (Ela - Sketches on a Departure), Oliver Adam Kusio, Germany, 26'
Jodilerks Dela Cruz, Employee of the Month, Carlo Francisco Manatad, Philippines and Singapore, 13'
Les enfants partent à l’aube (Children Leave at Dawn), Manon Coubia, France, 23'
Le Visage (Exposure), Salvatore Lista, France, 30'
*Los Desheredados, Laura Ferrés, Spain, 18' Cine Discovery Prize Winner
Möbius, Sam Kuhn, Canada and USA, 15'
*Najpiękniejsze fajerwerki ever (The Best Fireworks Ever), Aleksandra Terpińska, Poland, 30' Canal+ Award for Short Films Winner
Real Gods Require Blood, Moin Hussain, UK, 20'
Selva, Sofía Quirós Ubeda, Costa Rica, Argentina and Chile, 17'
Tesla: Lumière mondiale (The Tesla World Light), Matthew Rankin, Canada, 8'

Special Screenings
After School Knife Fight, Caroline Poggi and Jonathan Vinel, France, 21'
Coelho Mau (Bad Bunny),  Carlos Conceição, Portugal and France, 33'
Les Îles (Islands), Yann Gonzalez, France, 23'

The Jury
President: Kleber Mendonça Filho, director, screenwriter, film programmer and film critic, Brazil
Dana Bustamante Escobar, producer and film programmer, Colombia
Erick Kohn, film critic, USA
Hania Mroué, film programmer, Lebanon
Niels Schneider, actor, Canada

Invitation to the Morelia International Film Festival
Selection of 3 short films
Juan Perros, Rodrigo Imaz, Mexico, 34'
Microcastillo (Microcastle), Alejandra Villalba García, Mexico, 22'
Verde (Green), Alonso Ruizpalacios, Mexico, 22'

To check films at official site go here.

The Video

Early this morning organizers released the video with Charles Tesson, Semaine de la Critique Artistic Director, and Charlotte Lipinska, journalist and film critic, announcing the selection for the 2017 edition of the Critics' Week and is as eclectic (and strange) as always but this year also has some new elements like it is the first time ever the competition has an animation film and also a documentary.

No doubt cinema industry is changing and finally the mother of all festivals is starting to change as by now we know there are changes, some more fundamental than others, in all Cannes sections.  Change is always a constant and brings bad reactions, change in Cannes is no exception and there are many voicing their negative reactions to Cannes change.  So, I'm curious to see if the festival and/or the parallel sections will succumb to negative reactions; obviously, next year we will find what happens if change trend stays, continues or is stopped.

But before going in depth into the selection let's review what has been happening in this Cannes parallel section

The Poster

After last year's wonderful poster with Jessica Chastain the follow-up task was going to be hard and believe the 2017 poster doesn't match the beauty of last years' and uses a visual gimmick to attract the attention -which is good and bad.  Good because absolutely attracts anybody attention -as two women embracing always do- and bad because come on! why? why would anyone use two women to sell a cinema event? (lol).

Nevertheless the composition is not so great and, as someone wrote to mention how a controversial actress who might or might-not be dating the president was erased from photo, I believe that more people should have been erased to make a cleaner composition. Sigh.

Here is what organizers say about the poster designed by Les bons faiseurs with a photography by Alice Khol: Oldest among the parallel sections in Cannes and driven by its mission to reveal new Talents by selecting first and second films, La Semaine de la Critique chose to spotlight fort its 56th edition the magical and emotional moment when a film crew meets the very first audiences.  (... in the photo) the young actress Garance Marillier embraces director Julia Ducournau after the screening of her debut feature, Raw, selected in the competition of the 55th Semaine de la Critique.

Next Step

Created in collaboration with the TorinoFilmLab and supported by the CNC, the CCAS and the Moulin d’Andé-CÉCI, Next Step is a program, consisting of a 5-day workshop held in France in December.

The aim of this project is to support the 10 short filmmakers discovered by La Semaine de la Critique as they branch out into feature films. During the workshop, the filmmakers have the opportunity to discuss their projects with international experts and tutors, in order for them to receive advice on their scripts, to understand the reality of the industry and define an appropriate development strategy. Furthermore, a half-day workshop is dedicated to film music to encourage the participating directors to both better understand the work that goes into music composition for films and start thinking about the music for their feature film projects.

The next edition of Next Step will take place in December 2017 with the 4th session dedicated to the 10 short film directors selected at the 56th Semaine de la Critique in Cannes.

The Selection

Organizers received 1,700 short films and watched 1,250 feature films.  They proceed to select 13 short films and 11 feature films, 6 being first films (will compete for the Camera d'Or) and 5 second films.

The following is what organizers say about the selection:

With 13 short films and the 11 first and second feature films selected, the 56th Semaine de la Critique reflects the young directors' concerns about the ever changing world we live in.  The selected filmmakers take a political stance on human and social realities, in heterogeneous territories, stretching from Europe to Africa, from Latin America to Iran.  Films of far-reaching modernity, crossover of various cinematic genres, from the thriller to the eruption of fantasy, documentary, but also, for the first time at La Semaine de la Critique, an animation film will be competing.  To complete this year's selection, 2 films imbued with humor and tenderness are the rejoicing opportunities to meet again with the wonderful actors Josh Hartnett and Mark Hamill.

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