Latvian-Japanese documentary Ruch and Norie wins four Latvian ‘Oscars’
by Laurence Boyce
- The documentary has won at Lielais Kristaps, the biggest Latvian event for domestic films
Documentary Ruch and Norie reaped four prizes at the Lielais Kristaps Latvian National Film Festival’s awards ceremony on 24 October. The heart-warming human-interest story (produced by Film Studio DEVIŅI) was given Best Documentary, with director Ināra Kolmane also receiving Best Director and Best Screenplay. Best Cinematography in a feature-length documentary went to the film’s DoP, Andrejs Verhoustinskis.
The movie tells the touching story of Japanese student Norie Tsuruta, who finds her grandmother's reflection in the oldest member of the unique Suiti community in Latvia. The bond between them is so strong that she soon wishes she had two bodies in order to be at her home in Japan and at the home of Ruch at the same time.
“Uniting two different worlds is a great skill, but showing it to others in an effective and genuine way is even greater,” said Latvian Minister of Culture Dace Melbārde as she presented the Best Documentary Award to the team.
Ruch and Norie was one of the 15 selected documentary projects taking part in the European-Asian Crossing Borders ‘12 documentary workshop in South Korea, organised by the European Documentary Network and Documentary Campus. The film has proven popular among audiences right from the beginning, when a popular crowdfunding campaign was launched on Indiegogo. The title is now being prepared for a release in Europe, Asia and North America.
For the first time in the history of the Lielais Kristaps festival, the 87 selected films (including 11 documentaries) were judged by film professionals and the nominees themselves, who watched the movies on the silver screen and online throughout the month of October.