Danish psychodrama Winter Brothers received the main prize at the 23rd edition of Vilnius Film Festival Kino Pavasaris. Directed by Hlynur Pálmason, it is the first winner of a newly established European Debut competition. Bertrando Mandico’s The Wild Boys and Robert Schwentke’s The Captain are also among the winners announced at the closing ceremony on Friday.
Pálmason’s debut feature is set in a small community of Danish chalk mine workers. Praised for its visual poetry and minimalistic style, Winter Brothers tells a story of brotherhood, violence and loneliness within.
“It heralds a new voice in art house cinema” said the jury, consisting of Screen Daily’s chief critic Fionnuala Halligan, Jerusalem Film Festival’s program director Elad Samorzik, producer and festival strategist Kathleen McInnis and director Audrius Stonys.
Winter Brothers was also a success for actor Elliott Crosset Hove who won the Best Actor award for his demanding lead role as Emil. The best actress award went to Darya Zhovner for her outstanding part in Closeness, the dark coming of age drama set in the Russian North Caucasus.French director Bertrando Mandico’s experimental debut feature The Wild Boys earned him the Best Director award.
This year, Vilnius Film Festival combined two traditional main competition programmes New Europe – New Names and Baltic Gaze into the newEuropean Debut competition, focusing on debuting filmmakers from all of Europe.
Robert Schwentke’s World War II drama The Captain was awarded by the FIPRESCI jury. This year marked the first time that FIPRESCI members gave their prize at Kino Pavasaris. Jens Assur’s debute feature Ravens was awarded with the special Cineuropa’s prize.
Loving Vincent, the world’s first fully painted feature film by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman earned the Audience Award and Spanish director Rodrigo Sorogoye’s Mother got the Audience Award for the best short film. The award of the Short Film Competition went to Lithuanian director Laurynas Bareiša for By The Pool.
The festival was a success for Jurgis Matulevičius, whose historical drama Isaac was chosen as one of the winning in-development projects atMeeting Point – Vilnius industry screenings. The excerpts of this film together with Annagret Sachse’s Russia today and Kristians Riekstins Evawill be shown during Cannes industry screenings this May. Marija Stonytė’s coming-of-age story Gentle Warriors and Audrius MickevičiusExamplary Behavior won special post-production and promotion prizes.
Held in 11 cities in Lithuania, Kino Pavasaris counted 115,000 cinemagoers, once again establishing itself as the leading film festival in Lithuania.
COMPLETE LIST OF WINNERS
European Debut Winners
Winter Brothers / Vinterbrødre (Denmark, Iceland)
Directed by Hlynur Pálmason
Bertrand Mandico for The Wild Boys / Les Garçons Sauvages (France)
Darya Zhovner for Closeness / Tesnota (Russian Federation)
Directed by Kantemir Balagov
Elliott Crosset Hove for Winter Brothers / Vinterbrødre (Denmark)
The Captain / Der Hauptmann (Germany, France, Poland, Portugal)
Directed by Robert Schwentke
Ravens / Korparna (Sweden)
Directed by: Jens Assur
Audience Award – Best Feature Film:
Loving Vincent (Poland, United Kingdom)
Directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman
Audience Award – Best Lithuanian Feature Film:
100 Years Together / 100 metų kartu (Lithuania)
Directed by Edita Kabaraitė
Audience Award – Best Short Film:
Mother / Madre (Spain)
Directed by Rodrigo Sorogoyen
STUDENT FILM AWARDS
Best Student Film:
Mono No Aware (Lithuania)
Directed by Emilija Juzeliūnaitė
Perspective Student Director:
Titas Laucius for Snake / Gyvatė (Lithuania)
Directed by Jevgenij Tichonov
SHORT FILM AWARDS
Little Hands / Les Petites Mains (Belgium, France)
Directed by Rémi Allier
Best Short Film:
By The Pool / Pirtis (Lithuania)
Directed by Laurynas Bareiša
MEETING POINT – VILNIUS INDUSTRY SCREENING WINNERS
3 films – 20 minutes of each of the winning film projects will be shown at the Cannes Marche du Film industry screenings:
Isaak / Izaokas (Lithuania)
Directed by Jurgis Matulevičius
Russia today / (Germany, Russia)
Directed by Annagret Sachse
Directed by Kristians Riekstins
Sound and video post-production prize established by Vilnius Film Cluster together with “Madstone” and “Roofsound”:
Gentle Warriors / Švelnūs kariai (Lithuania)
Directed by Marija Stonytė
Digital storage and promotion prize from Baltic View and Noir Lumiere:
Exemplary Behavior / Pavyzdinas elgesys (Lithuania)
Directed by Audrius Mickevičius
Best Lithuanian film project pitch awarded by AVAKA: