Camden Int’l Film Festival awards prizes to world-renowned directors – Deadline


18e The Camden International Film Festival on Maine’s mid-coast — an increasingly important destination for documentary filmmakers — ended its in-person portion on Sunday after announcing a handful of awards.

The following day…, directed by Kamar Ahmad Simon, won the festival’s Harrell Prize, chosen from a pool of “some of the year’s most significant documentaries”. The film is described as “A philosophical ballad along the rivers of Bangladesh, transporting rich and poor, young and old, East and West in a centuries-old paddle steamer”.

“The jury was unanimous in its admiration for this film, in which an old riverboat appears to contain a whole society of dreamers and hustlers, politicians and radicals,” said juror Eric Hynes, noting that the documentary uses “both hybrid and obstinate techniques”. power of observation. It is a dazzling work of non-fiction.

“Polaris”, directed by Ainara Vera
CIFF/Points Nord Institute

The jury awarded a special mention to Polaris, another film with a nautical theme. Juror Assia Boundaoui described it as “a beautifully shot film that moves gracefully from the vast expanse of the Arctic Ocean to a glimpse into the innermost life of a woman bravely navigating troubled waters. Director Ainara Vera handles his camera with love and weaves a moving and intimate portrait of a captain struggling with love.

Another special mention was awarded to Foragersdirected by Jumana Manna, a film documenting “elderly Palestinians…caught between the right to cultivate their own land and the harsh restrictions imposed by their occupiers on the basis of preservation.”

Juror Jessica Kingdon (Oscar nominee earlier this year for her feature documentary Ascent) describe Foragers as a “surprisingly fanciful portrait of a people and their tumultuous relationship with land and state. We loved the creative use of re-enactments and stock footage.

A still from the documentary 'Detours'

“Detours”, directed by Ekaterina Selenkina
CIFF/Points Nord Institute

CIFF also presented awards in its Cinematic Vision category. The first prize went to Detoursa film set in Moscow directed by Ekaterina Selenkina.

“This film moved us for its eloquence in form and scope, as well as for its insightful and engaging blend of cinematic materiality, mixing digital and physical in the same way they do in the lives depicted here,” said declared the jury, consisting of Jason Fitzroy Jeffers, Pablo Alvarez-Mesa and Abby Sun. “It defies both the audience’s expectation of form and that of the surveillance state under which it is filmed.”

The jury awarded an honorable mention to Terra Novadirected by Alejandro Alonso and Alejandro Pérez, a film described in the CIFF program as “a sensory journey through the dreamlike sights and sounds of Havana, Cuba”.

A special mention went to H, directed by Carlos Pardo Ros, which the jurors called “a film that creates an experience beyond memory, transcending matter to evoke mortality and the distance or closeness between us. A cinema of risk, extreme courage and exploration.

A man on the banks of the Mobile River from 'Descendant'

“Descendant”, directed by Margaret Brown

Out of competition, the festival screened a number of award-winning films, including the Netflix documentary Descending, directed by Margaret Brown; National Geographic The territorya film directed by Alex Pritz about an indigenous tribe in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest who try to keep land grabbers at bay, and anything that breathesfrom HBO Documentary Films, the feature film by Shaunak Sen which won the World Cinema Documentary Grand Jury Prize at Sundance and the first documentary prize at Cannes.

Fresh from its world premiere in Venice, Steve James’s A compassionate spy screened in Camden. On his shoulders came from its TIFF world premiere at CIFF; the film directed by Tamana Ayazi and Marcel Mettelsiefen, and produced by Hillary Clinton and Chelsea Clinton, documents Zarifa Ghafari, who in her mid-twenties became “one of Afghanistan’s first female mayors, and the youngest to hold this job”.

CIFF continues as a virtual experience until September 25.


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