Montreal World Film Festival wrap-up
The MWFF announces winners as other film festivals line up for autumn
By Byron Toben
The bare bones 41st edition of the once mighty Montreal World Film Festival (MWFF) managed to hobble through its program involving a number of fine entries despite last minute announcements as to venues and times.
I was not able to find a list of the judges who in any event saw the films remotely. Anyway, after the closing film, which was offered free to the audiences (possibly to compensate for the absence this year of the free outdoor films as in the past?) the unknown judges did produce a list that can be viewed at the festival web site. Printing it or forwarding it seems difficult on many devices, but here are some highlights:
Grand Prix Of The Americas (Best Film)
And Suddenly The Dawn by Silvio Calozzi (Chile)
Special Grand Prix Of The Jury
Dear Stranger by Yukio Mishimura (Japan)
Maciej Sobieszczanski for Reconciliation (Poland)
Irena Kovacevic in The Basics of Killing (Slovenia/Serbia)
Karel Roden in A Prominent Patient (Czech Republic/Slovakia)
Hosein Namazi for Appendix (Iran)
Zeniths for Best First Feature Fiction Film
The Return by Chul Heo (South Korea)
Sweet Parents by David Bly (Canada/USA)
The Lost Elephants by Claude Andrieux (France)
Werner Nekes – The Life Between Images by Ulrike Pfeiffer (Germany)
Condemned To Remember by Gerry Gregg (Ireland)
When They Awake by P.J. Marcellino and Herman Farahi (Canada)
As can be seen above, the winning films were from a wide variety of countries and this was true even of the non-competition selection. Where else can you glimpse entries from Macedonia and Sri Lanka?
If you want glitz and Hollywood, zip off to Toronto’s fest.
The single country with the most entries was China, and in fact, there was a Chinese Film festival within the Montreal one, won by The Amber by Chen Peng.
I predict that there will be a 42nd year of this event in 2018 wherein Québecor’s (which owns Videotron) support will further increase the digital profile of the MWFF.
September 27 to October 1
Montreal International Black Film Festival
Now in its 13th year, this festival has expanded from the small Haitian film festival into its present form under the guidance of the dynamic Fabienne Colas.
October 4 to 15
Festival du Nouveau Cinema
Now in its 46th year after some name changes, this brainchild of Claude Chamberlan and Dmitri Eipides has grown into a twelve-venue event.
November 2 to 12
Cinemania: French Films with English Subtitles
Now in its 23rd year, this unique show birthed by Maidy Teitelbaum is packed with Francophones who don’t need the sub titles but are attracted by the quality of films shown.
Bon cinéma à tous!
Feature image: And Suddenly the Dawn
Byron Toben is the immediate past-president of the Montreal Press Club.