Tromsø gives its top prize to Anna Rose Holmer’s The Fits
by Jorn Rossing Jensen
- The US director’s feature debut won its 13th international award at Norway’s largest film festival, which is still unspooling 350 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle
On Saturday (21 January), US director Anna Rose Holmer’s feature debut, The Fits [+see also:
film profile], added the top Aurora Award to its 12 international accolades, when the 27th Tromsø International Film Festival presented its seven winners at Norway’s largest film gathering, 350 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle. The screening programme will be concluded today at Verdensteatret, Norway’s oldest cinema building.
In the movie, while taking part in boxing training at the gym with her elder brother, 11-year-old Toni (Royalty Hightower) becomes entranced by a dance troupe consisting of teenage girls; she joins the group and struggles to fit in, but soon finds herself in danger, as the other members begin to suffer from fainting spells and other violent fits.
Romanian director Cristian Mungiu was this year’s honorary guest at Tromsø, where he was celebrated through a retrospective of his work, while his latest feature, Graduation [+see also:
Q&A: Cristian Mungiu
interview: Cristian Mungiu
film profile] – which bagged the Best Director Award at Cannes – received the international film critics’ FIPRESCI Award.
Icelandic director Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson’s feature-length directorial debut, Heartstone [+see also:
interview: Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson
film profile] – the only Nordic contender in the Aurora main competition – bagged the Don Quijote Award from the International Federation of Film Societies. The Norwegian Peace Film Award went to Izer Aliu’s Hunting Flies [+see also:
interview: Izer Aliu
International condemnation and the EU ban on seal products have almost wiped out seal hunting in Norway, but an ageing skipper and his first mate refuse to give in. Norwegian directors Trude Berge Ottersen and Gry Elisabeth Mortensen’s documentary Sealers – One Last Hunt earned them the Tromsø Audience Award.
Finally, the Faith in Film Award, given with Tromsø University’s Centre for Peace Studies and the Student Network for Peace to the film that best contributes to a better understanding of the significance of religion in the daily lives of modern people, went to Israeli director Maya Zinshtein’s Forever Pure, in which she follows a football team during a season of crisis.
Here is the full list of award winners at the Tromsø International Film Festival:
Midsummer Night – Jonas Selberg Augustsén (Sweden)
Faith in Film Award
Forever Pure – Maya Zinshtein (Israel/UK/Russia)
Tromsø Audience Award
Sealers – One Last Hunt – Trude Berge Ottersen, Gry Elisabeth Mortensen (Norway)
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