Tuesday, October 16, 2012

25th European Film Awards Discovery Award Nominations

The European Film Academy announced today the nominees for the EUROPEAN DISCOVERY 2012 – Prix FIPRESCI, an award presented annually as part of the European Film Awards to a young and upcoming director for a first full-length feature film.

This year’s nominations were determined by a committee comprised of EFA Board Members Helena Danielsson (Sweden) and Els Vandevorst (Netherlands), EFA Members Pierre-Henri Deleau (France) and Jacob Neiiendam (Denmark), as well as Alin Tasciyan (Turkey), Paulo Portugal (Portugal), and Mihai Chirilov (Romania) as members of FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics.

These are the five (5) nominated films

10 Timer Til Paradis (Teddy Bear), Mads Matthiesen, Denmark
Broken, Rufus Norris, UK
Kauwboy, Boudewijn Koole, Netherlands
Портрет в сумерках Portret V Sumerkhak (Twilight Portrait), Angelina Nikonova, Russia
Die Vermissten (Reported Missing), Jan Speckenbach, Germany

Among the nominees we find the 2012 Sundance Festival Directing Award to Mads Mathiensen for his film Teddy Bear about a 38-year-old bodybuilder Dennis would really like to find true love. He has never had a girlfriend and lives alone with his mother in a suburb of Copenhagen. When his uncle marries a girl from Thailand, Dennis decides to try his own luck on a trip to Pattaya, as it seems that love is easier to find in Thailand. He knows that his mother would never accept another woman in his life, so he lies and tells her that he is going to Germany. Dennis has never been out traveling before and the hectic Pattaya is a huge cultural shock for him. The intrusive Thai girls give big bruises to Dennis' naive picture of what love should be like, and he is about to lose hope when he unexpectedly meets the Thai woman Toi.

The opening film of the 2012 Cannes Semaine de la Critique with a very interesting cast and story about a young girl in North London whose life changes after witnessing a violent attack, Broken by award-winning theatre director Rufus Norris. Synopsis: Skunk is 11, diabetic, and pretty cool. The summer holidays have just begun and her days are full of easy hopes. Then Mr. Oswald, the ugly man who lives opposite, beats up Rick, the sweet, but unstable boy next door after his daughter accuses the boy of rape, and Skunk's innocence begins to be drained away at a speed and in a way she cannot control. Her home, her neighborhood, her school - all become treacherous environments where the happy certainties of childhood give way to a fear-filled doubt, and a complex, broken world fills her future. Skunk seeks solace in the last remaining place where she knows she can find it - the unspoken friendship with sweet, damaged Rick - and falls into a chaos where suddenly, joyfully, she has choice thrust back into her hands. The choice to remain in this place she was never promised, or to leave it entirely - to live or to die. Film is currently in competition for Best British Newcomer Award at 2012 BFI London Film festival.

The 2012 Berlinale Deutsches Kinderhilfswerk Grand Prix winner and First Movie Award, Kawboy by Boudewijn Koole that also won 2012 EFA's Young Audience Award, is Netherlands' submission to Oscar, has more honors in the festival circuit and a story about a lively 10-year-old with a difficult home life marked by a volatile father and an absent mother, finds solace in an abandoned baby jackdaw. Through the special friendship he builds with the bird, the wall between him and his father will be brought down.

The winner of the Golden Puffin at the 2011 Reykjavik IFF, Golden Alexander and Hellenic Association of Film Critics Award at 2011 Thessaloniki Festival, Grand Prize winner of the 2011 Cottbus Film Festival of Young East European Cinema: Twilight Portrait by Angelina Nikonova with what seems has to be a hard to watch story about Marina, an upper-crust social worker with a doting husband and an enviable downtown apartment, is suddenly transformed into a bizarre twilight version of herself when she is raped by three policemen.

The 2012 Berlinale Perspektive Deutches Kino official selection Reported Missing by Jan Spekenbach with the following story synopsis: All of a sudden, 16-year-old Martha vanishes. Her father Lothar, who for years has had no contact with her or his ex-wife, sets off unwilling to find her. He soon realizes other young people are also vanishing from the city inexplicably. Lothar follows their trail across the country. He meets the occasional young person but the trail goes cold. In the next city he encounters militia groups and a reinforced police presence. Children are forbidden to be on the streets unless accompanied by adults. The world has changed...

As we can see nominees have quite impressive credentials, compelling stories (some surely not easy to watch) and debut directors with films that show their great master potential.

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