Here are the prizes that were awarded during the closing ceremony of the twenty-third edition of the Lecce European Film Festival, directed by Alberto La Monica and enriched this year by the presence of illustrious guests.
The XIIIth edition of the European Film Festival, which took place, as usual, in Lecce, closed with an undoubtedly positive balance. Many guests of this 2022: from Raul Bovawhich he presented The Christmas Showto Sergio Rubini who received the Golden Olive Tree for Lifetime Achievement, from the brothers Greenfinch which every year award the best Italian debut film to the director and the cast of The first rule, movie to be released on December 1st. The film event directed by Albert LaMonica ended with the awards ceremony.
For the Golden Olive Tree European feature film competition, the jury, chaired by Pascal Diot It’s composed by Klaus Eder, Andriy Khalpakhchi, Marie-Pierre Valle and Enrico Vannucci awarded the following awards:
- Golden Olive Tree-Cristina Soldano Award for Best Film to A room of my own of the director Ioseb Bliadze “for the ability to deeply interpret the conservative approach towards the young people of society and to show how despite everything it is possible to become the architect of one’s own destiny”
- Special Jury Prize to How is Katia? of the director Christina Tynkevych “for portraying the tragic fate of a young ‘single’ mother against the backdrop of the injustice of certain social issues”
- Best Cinematography Award to 9th Step of the director Irina Pužauskaitė “for sensitively portraying the lives and emotions of the protagonists”
- Award for Best Screenplay to Zuhal of the director Nazli Elif Durlu “for the originality of the screenplay which reconstructs the social landscape of a Turkish condominium through the fate of a cat imprisoned behind a wall”
The SNGCI Award for Best European Actress/Actorassigned by Jury of Italian Film Journalistswent Bosnian Marija Pikicprotagonist of the film A Ballad by Aida Begicbecause “it gives body and soul with lightness and intensity to the solitary ballad of Meri who fights her battle for the custody of her little daughter and also faces, together, the challenge of living with the recklessness of a family that is dysfunctional to say the least and the aggressiveness of a bossy mother. There is no intimacy or right to peace in her life marked by contrasting moods and perspectives. For this reason, the alternation of feelings and states of mind that Marija enacts ignites in her difficult daily life the light a small feminist revolution. Her Meri, more than convincing in staging reality and melancholy, loneliness and rebellion, becomes the protagonist of a liberation ballad”
The Fipresci Jury Prizeassigned by Paula Casella, Živa Emeršič And Joanna Orzechowska-BonisHe went to Zuhal by Nazli Elif Durlu “for the original idea and intelligent development of a deceptively simple story, which starts from the absurd search for a cat theoretically hidden inside the walls of an apartment building inhabited by the upper middle class. This surreal search led by a central, strong female character and independent, reveals a stratified portrait of contemporary Turkish society, represented by apartment blocks who behave according to their conformism and their cowardice.The tone of the film, initially lighthearted, gradually transforms into a serious and introspective reflection of the role of women in Turkey. And yet her critical insights remain cleverly hidden under the cover of a cat hunt, without ever losing sight of an important message”.
THEthe Cineuropa Prizeassigned by the director Valerio CarusoHe went to 9th Step from Irma Pužauskaitė for “having sensitively shown that one can learn from one’s mistakes. For having described fragile and wounded figures from life, but who can save themselves thanks to their passions. To reward a first film by a very promising young woman. The film makes us appreciate the figure of a father who tries, despite the hardships and the addiction to alcohol, to do the right thing and keep the moral bar straight.One cannot help but root for this man to the last and hope that , righting his mistakes, this fallible and flawed young father finally manages to get a smile out of his relentless daughter”
For the section Puglia Showthe jury, chaired by Gregory Paonessa It’s composed by Antonella Gaeta And Lidia Vitalehe assigned the CNC Award – National Short Film Center And the Augustus Color Award to San Vitu Rock from Faustus Roman “For the narrative dance, light and playful, with tradition, that of the perforated stone of San Vito in Calimera, in the heart of the Grecìa Salentina, which ensures fertility and well-being. The short film by Fausto Romano fascinates, entertains and moves safely on the ground of paradox and well acted and directed comedy”
There were two special mentions. The first went to: The last day of winter from Renata La Serra: “The only short cinema of the real of the selection, the work of Renata La Serra reveals mastery of the tools of storytelling from life thanks to a story of acceptance, inclusion and memory, themes with which our contemporaneity is called to confront on a daily basis”. The second was instead attributed to Endless Waiting from Francis Lorusso“Short film, supported by important and international means, reveals the sure and inspired hand of a young director in training who sinks his heart and gaze into the uncanny, into the myth and into the solitude of a coming into the world that never takes place”.
The following were also assigned to the short films of the Puglia Show Section:
- THEthe Rai Cinema Channel Awarddecreed by the jury composed of Maria Federica Lo Jacono And Manuela Rimaequivalent to 3,000 euros and went to Pillow face from Xavier Cappiello “for the great ability of the director and the very young performers to profoundly tell reality, in that phase between childhood and adolescence in which everything is a challenge and the need to be accepted is fundamental”.
- The Unisalento Awardassigned by the jury of the University Cineclub of the Dams and Design and Management of Audiovisual and Performative Production Systems degree courses of the University of Salento, and went to The last day of winter from Renata La Serra with the following motivation: “For the narration that makes use of a remarkable smoothness and fluidity. The immersive shots invite the viewer into the reality represented naturally. For a message aimed at raising awareness on the issue of political refugees in our country, a delicate issue treated with originality”.
Not to be forgotten, the Mario Verdone Prizeassigned by the jury composed of the brothers Charles, Luca And Silvia Verdone on a selection of 10 titles proposed by the European Film Festival and the SNGCI. It was it that won Julia Louise Steigerwalt for his debut work September with the following motivation: “A particularly interesting debut that marks, in an intertwining of lost loves and unexpected encounters, a small revolution in the traditional liturgy of sentimental comedy. Irony and sincerity alternate with moments of authentic poetry and, in the film, with shyness of adolescents in the difficulty of the first time is counterpointed by the desire of lost adults to emerge, even surprisingly, from melancholy solitudes to reawaken feelings in lethargy.Specified by the rhythm of a perfect script even in the dialogues, Settembre is a new comedy, crossed by a sensitivity narrative that now also promises a good screenwriter the certainty of a bright future as a director”
The Emidio Greco Prizefor which the short films selected by compete Lia FurxhiDirector CNC, and from Albert LaMonica Director FCE, was awarded, by the jury made up of the family Greekto The true story of the world’s greatest hide-and-seek matchfrom David Morando, Irene Cotroneo And Paul Bonfadiniwith the following motivation: “Succeeding in enhancing memory, working so that it remains alive in the thoughts of the new generations, is a difficult, yet necessary, in some cases fundamental operation. Being able to do it in a short film, using the language of the documentary and bending it with freedom and respect, irony and awareness, towards one’s own expressive needs is one of the main objectives of cinema.This is what the winning film manages to do.The tenth edition of the Emidio Greco Prize goes to The True Story of the Game of hide and seek in the world by Davide Morando, Irene Cotroneo and Paolo Bonfadini, with the hope of continuing to successfully investigate that territory in which cinema meets reality”.
The Rotary Club Lecce Award, chosen from all the films presented at the Festival, is usually assigned to a film which in terms of themes and narrative form is particularly close to the mission, “We serve” of the humanitarian association. This year the recognition went to Iazz Bann from Lorenzo Zitoli And Salvatore Magronewith the following motivation: “Through the recovery of the values of the past and the awareness of the present, the film proposes the narration of a musical story that becomes a sensitive metaphor of today, based on the care of our roots and projected on future prospects”
This year the Cinema&Reality section was enriched by the special mention “Cinecittà News”which has been attributed to MILVA from Angelo Dominic Capogna: “The editorial staff of CinecittàNews has chosen a film capable of affirming that cinema is also able to create dreams, even when it narrates starting from the most stringent current events. The choice of the mockumentary contributes to fueling not a fantasy universe, but a realistic and fanta-political cosmos located in the near future.A monster for the environment, society, health, a monument of immobility and death: the ILVA of Taranto, from a place of horrors in Puglia and of the news, with the cinema is transformed into a museum, which in its essence it bears the concept of historical memory and a glimpse of a different future.For the audacious vitality with which the author takes hold of a burning subject that still inflames the existence of Taranto and Italy and becomes capable of playing with the cinematographic tool, making its imaginative essence explode, with a highly realistic result; for the ability to weave the language of the mockumentary with that of contemporary history with vitality orana”.
The Audience Awardwas finally assigned to 9th Step by Irma Pužauskaitė.