Sunday, December 08, 2019

32nd European Film Awards Winners

Last night the European Film Academy had their awards ceremony which was able to watch it live on TV.  Do know that the concept of entertainment in Europe is different to the one that prevails in USA and yesterday was clearly evident for me as the ceremony production values were not that bad but there is so much producers should learn as there were many moments that were so much NOT entertainment and showed they sort of amateurish status.

Just as an example most presenters and award winners had no idea of what to do in the stage as a consequence on TV looked clumsy; but the most basic was unforgiving, NO presenter nor award winner should come down the stairs, NEVER, they should leave the stage by any side.  Worst was when camera was right in front of them, so basically they walk into the camera or so we watched on TV.

German humor is very particular and not always is funny for other audiences, but for me was alright except for those moments when funny actors interfere with the flow of the awards presentation, which were many.  Sigh.  Got so disappointed when Claire Denis was "not-allowed" to speak in French (!!!) come on! it's Europe and Europe speaks many languages!  Know English is the language of business and perhaps more widely understood, BUT there is nothing less-attractive on TV than watching people trying -without success- to speak English when is not their first language.  Please, next time use subtitles, simultaneous translations or whatever, BUT allow presenters and award winners to speak their mother tongue IF they wish to do so. Sigh.

What I really liked both humor and for high entertainment values was Werner Herzog's presentation the Aria was magnificent and yes made me laugh loud - as was able to understand everything the singer sang (not really an Opera fan), thanks to the subtitles in the screen (lol).

No surprise to blog readers when I say good European Cinema is my favorite and yes, 2019 had lots of great films so it's a kind of disappointment when the film that won everything in 2018 won in 2019 here.  Perhaps organizers should modify qualification rules so this kind of situation does not happen again as makes the award ceremony a lot less interesting and probably is the cause of why so many award winners did not attended the ceremony (which is an absolutely NO-NO for any awards ceremonies).  The Favourite momentum was last awards season and IF last December film should have won like yesterday, then everything would have made more sense.

Know that Polanski's latest film has lots of controversy because of him, but even do there is too-much not-positive buzz, EFA's organizers "allowed" film to be in 2019 edition and not send film to 2020 competition.  So we are clear, it's all about release date.  The Favourite was not released in Europe until January 2019, while Polanski's film was released during November 2019.

We understand this is the European Film Academy so it is expected their awards honor film but this year they gave an award to a TV series which puts fire into what many are discussing especially in the USA, what's TV and what's Film nowadays.  Is Netflix -or any other streaming service- TV or Film?  Another award that also increases the discussion is Cahiers du Cinema Best Films of the Decade going to David Lynch's Twin Peaks: The Return", is a film or is TV?  Well, my loyal readers, here goes my contribution.  Television has hugely changed in the last 5 years or so, nowadays most of TV series or shows are like long movies and me, I LOVE them and the change, as there is nothing more "entertaining" than a very long movie that covers ALL angles of characters and story and uses production values as one integral component of the storytelling.  For me ALL are film and where I chose to watch them is not relevant for name calling. Now there are short films, medium-length fims, average-lenght films and very-long films.  Hope cinema industry catches with reality and stop silly discussions about what mainly old-men (usually with high money-losing perspectives) say it's the "correct" name.

So, the BIG winner of the night was The Favourite as won several awards including Best Film, Best Comedy, Best Director, Best Actress and more.

The Winners List

European Film: The Favourite

European Discovery - Prix FIPRESCI: Les Misérables
European ComedyThe Favourite
European Animated Feature Film: Buñuel en el Laberinto de las Tortugas (Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles)
European Documentary: For Sama

European Short Film: Cadoul de Crăciun (The Christmas Gift)

European Actress: Olivia Colman in The Favourite
European Actor: Antonio Banderas in Dolor y Gloria (Pain and Glory)

European Screenwriter: Céline Sciamma for Portrait de la jeune fille en feu (Portrait of a Lady On Fire)
European Cinematographer: Robbie Ryan for The Favourite
European Editing: Yorgos Mavropsaridis for The Favourite
European Production Design: Antxon Gómez for Dolor y Gloria (Pain and Glory)
European Costume Design: Sandy Powell for The Favourite
European Hair & Make-up Artist: Nadia Stacey for The Favourite
European Original Score: John Gürtler for System Crasher
European Sound: Eduardo Esquide, Nacho Royo-Villanova & Laurent Chassaigne for Una Noche de 12 Años (A Twelve-Year Night)
European Visual Effects: Martin Ziebell, Sebastian Kaltmeyer, Néha Hirve, Jesper Brodersen & Torgeir Busch for Om det oändliga (About Endlessness)

European University Film Award: Portrait de la jeune fille en feu (Portrait of a Lady On Fire),  Céline Sciamma

European Achievement in Fiction Series Award: Achim von Borries, Henk Handloegten and Tom Tykwer for Babylon Berlin

European Film Academy Lifetime Achievement Award: Werner Herzog
European Achievement in World Cinema Award: Juliette Binoche
European Co-Production Award - Prix Eurimages: Ankica Jurić Tilić, Croatia

People's Choice Award for Best European Film:

The EFA Execellence Jury
Special eight-member jury decided on the winners in the categories cinematography, editing, production design, costume design, hair & make-up, original score, sound and visual effect

Nadia Ben Rachid, editor, France
Vanja Černjul, cinematographer, Croatia
Annette Focks, composer, Germany
Gerda Koekoek, hair & make-up artist, Netherlands
Eimer Ní Mhaoldomhnaigh, costume designer, Ireland
Artur Pinheiro, production designer, Portugal
Gisle Tveito, sound designer, Norway
István Vajda, visual effects, Hungary

To check winners go official site here.

December 7, 2019
Tonight, December 7 the European Film Academy will have its awards ceremony in Berlin but yesterday organizers announced several awards plus the European University Film Award (EUFA).

As every year the EUFA nominated films were viewed and discussed in 24 universities and 24 countries and each institution selected its favorite film.  One student representative from each university then attended a three-day deliberation meeting to decide on the overall winner and this year is none other than Céline Sciamma's Portrait of a Lady On Fire.

To quote the jury: "In this film, frightening, careful and gentle storytelling creates a mythical atmosphere in which female characters depend on each other and find solace in each other's company. Central composition, a renaissance colour palette and stylised mise-en-scène all contribute to presenting every frame as a canvas painting. Furthermore, the movie's relationship with European art and history shines a light on the local values and way of life. By breaking the hierarchy between the artist and the muse, Sciamma turns the artistic process into a moving queer love story."

Below are the awards already announced.  Post will be in progress until after the awards ceremony tonight.

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