OFF Awards: Laureates

 

The Main Competition

 

Grand Prix – The HCA Award: Written/Unwritten by Adrian Silisteanu

Synopsis: Outside a maternity ward, a Roma family is told that their underage daughter has just had a baby girl. There is no celebration; the early pregnancy was a mistake. The situation becomes even tenser when a hospital employee questions their IDs and their status as parents of the underage new mother. The imminent danger of state authorities separating them from their daughter pushes Pardică to take action.

 

Motivation: Written/Unwritten is a raw, touching and last but not least an unsentimental film experience. It tackles a subject and a group of people, that we seldom see depicted on film. It uses our prejudices about the Roma people, and it frees us from them as well. The acting is sublime and authentic, and as an audience, we get pulled in by the characters, and carried away by their harsh fates.

It is a brave film, that shows a clash between cultures in the most unpleasant way, where we still end up seeing that there, behind the harsh reality, is a lot of humanity and love.

 

Produktionyear: 2016

Country: Rumania

Genre: Fiktion

 

The Storyteller Award: Domesticated Wolf by Elad Primo

Synopsis: Jacob, a single parent, is trying to guard his chickens from being slaughtered in the coop. And he would be happy to keep his teenage daughter locked up, too, if he could. But daughters are not chickens and cannot be kept in cages. He must let her find her own way.

 

Motivation: Domesticated Wolf is a beautifully composed story, that lives up to the short film format in model fashion. The film is sublimely well build, and not a second is redundant. It is elementary exciting, believes in it’s scenes and let the audience stay in them. In it’s simplistic, original and almost symbolic storyline, a bigger and universal story is hiding, about a farther, who watches his daughter grow up and must let her go. It is inherently human, moving and humorously executed.

 

Produktionyear: 2016

Country: Israel

Genre: Fiktion

 

The Artist Award: Red Apples by George Sikharulidze

Synopsis: A young Armenian bride’s relationship with her husband is put to the test on their first day of marriage when her mother-in-law interferes. The wedding night was bliss, but the sheets are still white when they wake up the next morning. Everything depends on that stain that is not there.

 

Motivation: Red Apples is a harsh story about love, failure and traditions. The film gives us an insight into a world, where culture and conventions marks the human relations and destroys young love. It is a strong environmental depiction, where we follow a young and infatuated bride. She is abruptly pulled out of her blis, when she wakes up the day after the wedding night to a new reality, where the breaking of trust is total and nothing is as yesterday.  It is a powerful story, from a director with a brave and personal voice.

 

Produktionyear: 2016

Country: Georgia

Genre: Fiktion

 

The Danish Competition

 

Best Danish Short: Übermensch by Jesper Dalgaard

Synopsis: Two transient young men break into an empty church by the sea to form a blood pact: to get rid of their childhood demons and escape the cycle of anxiety and authorities. Their dreams of making it as true goth-rock-stars forces them to transcend old boundaries and play their first live concert ever. The redemption they’ve longed for is now manifested in their friendship.

 

Motivation: From the first scene involving a poorly executed blood pact, this offbeat portrait of two best friends transforms every expectation you may have of the subjects and makes you fall in love with them. Expertly edited with exceptional timing and humor, the film achieves something remarkable – it takes a straightforward story and converts it into a meditation on vulnerability, friendship, and identification. We would have given this film 10 out of 10, but it feels more appropriate to give it a 666. The award for the Best Danish Film goes to Übermensch by Jesper Dalgaard.

 

Produktionyear: 2017

Country: Denmark

Genre: Documentary

 

FilmFyns Talent Award: In a month (Om en måned) by Jonas Kærup Hjort

Synopsis: A group of workers on a factory in the middle of nowhere are held indefinitely in the dark. The foreman maintains routines until one day when he has had enough. When the phone rings again at full moon with the same news as last time regarding their rescue, he shoots himself. From now on the workers are all alone without a leader and they begin a journey into meaninglessness.

 

Motivation: When deciding the award for the FilmFyn Talent award, we were asked to look for a film displaying singular vision and promise. Nothing impressed us more than this shocking and haunting tale of men slowly losing their minds to the darkness that surrounds them. Without aestheticizing their agony, the director crafts a precise and measured film that captures beauty where there should be none. The fact that this is a student graduation film is almost more amazing than the film itself and we can’t wait to see what he and his entire team does next. We would like to award the FilmFyn Talent award to In A Month by Jonas Kærup Hjort.

 

Produktionyear: 2017

Country: Denmark

Genre: Fiktion

 

Animation Competition

 

Børge Ring Award: Nothing Happens by Michelle & Uri Kranot

Synopsis: It is freezing cold on the outskirts of town. Yet people gather. They form a row across the horizon. They all wait for something to happen. However, nothing does… They have been assembled to witness an event. To participate in being seen. The spectacle of watching and being watched.

 

Motivation:

The winner of this year’s ”Børge Ring Award” goes to a film with a lot of odds against it.

At first it seems like a very difficult film to watch, with it’s painfully slow pacing, old eastern european film look and seemingly historical topic. In terms of a narrative, it doesn’t give you much to hold on to.

But then something happens.

You realise that you’re not only watching the film,you’re right in the center of it. Something is going on, but what?

It uses its traditional techniques with elegance, simplicity and confidence. Everything works together. It’s classical, yet refreshingly conceptual.

And most importantly: It doesn’t judge. It doesn’t try to manipulate you. Like a mirror, it gently shows you yourself and asks you to reflect on your own role and responsibility in a world flooded with conflicts and trauma.

A world where horrors STILL unfolds before our eyes while we stand by passively watching, perhaps evenunwillingly participating.

It in that sense, the frustration of watching this film, becomes the point.

It’s a cry for reflection, perhaps even action. But nothing happens.

This years Børge Ring Award goes to ”Nothing Happens” by Michelle and Uri Kranot.

 

Produktionyear: 2017

Country: Denmark

Genre: Animation

 

Animation Talent Award: Related (I Familie) by Ida Andreasen

Synopsis: Silje and her father are struggling with uncontrollable tempers. When they get angry their heads grow big and red. The hot-headed Silje wants her father’s love, but he lives in self-hatred and shame because of his anger and can’t deal with Silje being just like him. Together father and daughter have to face their inner demons and learn to live with their anger. 


 

Motivation:

This years talent award goes to a film with a lot of heart.

While its thematics aren’t new to the Danish film tradition, what surprised us was the unique voice telling this story.

In both a progressive and reminiscent manner, its director has found an original and mature way to tell a story where taking space and giving space to loved ones is explored.

The animation style as well as the ambitious use of color and light serve the story with harmony and modesty.

The film is beautifully poetic, yet simple and precise.

This film succeeds in letting the audience project themselves into it, stearing clear of cliches because its narration feels so deeply personal and honest. It shows us with fresh eyes what it means to be a family even when things get tough.

We really look forward to seeing what the director comes up with next, and where her path will lead her.

This year’s Talent Award in Animation goes to Ida Andreassen for her film ”Related”, ”I Familie”.

 

Produktionyear: 2016

Country: Denmark

Genre: Animation

 

Other Awards

 

The Audience Award: Abu Adnan by Sylvia Le Fanu

Synopsis: Sayid, a refugee doctor from Syria, has just received a Danish residence permit and is about to embark on establishing a new life in rural Denmark with his son Adnan. At the same time as having to learn a new language, he faces the challenge of maintaining his boy’s respect, in a situation where Adnan’s assimilation seems to be going somewhat faster than his own.

 

Produktionyear: 2017

Country: Denmark

Genre: Fiktion

 

The Youth Award: Abu Adnan by Sylvia Le Fanu

Synopsis: Sayid, a refugee doctor from Syria, has just received a Danish residence permit and is about to embark on establishing a new life in rural Denmark with his son Adnan. At the same time as having to learn a new language, he faces the challenge of maintaining his boy’s respect, in a situation where Adnan’s assimilation seems to be going somewhat faster than his own.

 

Motivation: We have seen lots of good films in this week, but there was especially one that caught our interest – both because of the realistic story, but also because of the fantastic actors that could pull us into the emotional rollercoaster, where we laughed and smiled but at the same time made us feel embarrassed the second after.

The main actors were played by strong characters, and most of the jury members could empathize with the roles of the characters. The strong bond between father and son affected us a lot, because it felt so realistic and they seemed to be very close.

The photo composition helped us understanding the film, for example the symmetry when the relationship between them was good. The film gained a good insight into how families deal with everyday issues. The theme is present, and shows a subject we easily can relate to. 

It is a true winner film!

 

Produktionyear: 2017

Country: Denmark

Genre: Fiktion

 

Pitch Me Baby, 1. price: Den splittede mand by Mathias Broe

Motivation: Based upon personal experiences the award winner wants to explore male sexuality in a brave, poetic and sensual portrait.

Through examinations and artistic visions, he intends to create a film that challenges and embraces the diversity in human relations.

The Pitch Me Baby Award goes to Mathias Broe!

 

Pitch Me Baby, 2. price: Bare et lille skub by Pernille Kjærsgård

Motivation: As a sharp comedy about loving your father in spite this loving and bittersweet story emerges from the recipient. With a clear and distinct story filled with the rainbows color, energy and cinematic potential our special price goes to: Bare et lille skub / Pernille Kjærsgård.

 

Robert Award:

The five nominees are : Abu Adnan by Sylvia Le Fanu, Land of Our Fathers by Ulaa SalimHalfman by Frederik Louis HviidLittle Dancer by Nils Holst-Jensen & Silent Night by Aske Bang.