Kirill Mikhanovsky’s Give Me Liberty wins the fourth International Film Festival & Awards‧Macao
- Fyzal Boulifa’s Lynn + Lucy, Hamish Bennett’s Bellbird and Rodd Rathjen’s Buoyancy were also among the winners at the Asian gathering
US-based Russian writer-director Kirill Mikhanovsky’s feature Give Me Liberty has emerged as the big winner of the Best Film Award at the fourth International Film Festival & Awards‧Macao (IFFAM). Headed up by IFFAM artistic director Mike Goodridge, the festival ran from 5-10 December and wrapped with the awards ceremony held at the Macao Cultural Centre.
The Official Competition jury, chaired by Chinese director-producer-screenwriter Peter Chan Ho-sun, and comprising president and CEO of VREGA Ellen Eliasoph, Indonesian actress Dian Sastrowardoyo, Myanma director Midi Z and British actor Tom Cullen, handed the $60,000 (€54,000) award to Give Me Liberty, saying about their decision: “This is a farcical and poignant portrait of a day in the life of America’s challenged and disenfranchised. The film starts with hilarious, inexhaustible energy, and then weaves into a story of empathy, compassion and, most of all, hope. It’s no coincidence that the movie is set in a city on the brink of a political meltdown, with a protest in the end that makes the film all the more relevant to the world we are living in right now.”
Another big winner was Fyzal Boulifa for his stark tale of female friendship Lynn + Lucy [+see also:
interview: Fyzal Boulifa
film profile], as the first-time filmmaker snagged the Best Director Award, while the Best Actress Award was bestowed upon Roxanne Scrimshaw for her performance in the movie. The Best Actor Award went to young Sarm Heng for his role in Buoyancy, a drama by Australian debutant writer-director Rodd Rathjen, and the film was also the IFFAM audience’s favourite and consequently received the Macao Audience Choice Award. Finally, writer-director Hamish Bennett, from New Zealand, was awarded Best Screenplay for his debut, Bellbird.
In the New Chinese Cinema Competition, Best New Chinese-language Film of the Year went to Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains by Xiaogang Gu, while Anthony Chen received the Best Director Award for his Wet Season and Johnny Ma the Best Screenplay Award for To Live to Sing [+see also:
film profile], which also snagged the NETPAC Award.
Here is the complete list of winners at the fourth International Film Festival & Awards‧Macao:
Give Me Liberty - Kirill Mikhanovsky (USA)
Sarm Heng - Buoyancy (Australia)
Roxanne Scrimshaw - Lynn + Lucy
Hamish Bennett - Bellbird (New Zealand)
Macao Audience Choice Award
Buoyancy - Rodd Rathjen
New Chinese Cinema Competition
Best New Chinese-language Film of the Year
Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains - Xiaogang Gu (China)
Anthony Chen - Wet Season (Singapore)
Wu Xiaoliang - Wisdom Tooth (China)
Zhou Dong Yu - Better Days (China)
To Live To Sing - Johnny Ma
Asian Blockbuster Film 2019
Parasite - Bong Joon Ho (South Korea)
“Spirit of Cinema” Achievement Award
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