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ASTRA FILM FESTIVAL AWARDS 2021

DOCSCHOOL

BEST DIRECTOR (offered by Cinelabs Romania)

THEN COMES THE EVENING (ȘI APOI SE LASĂ SEARA)

Maja Novaković | Serbia, Bosnia

The jury awards the Best Director to an observational film that captures a tender relationship in a timeless world in a very cinematic way. We loved the way in which the director uses small details and gestures to tell the story of both loneliness and connection with nature. The award goes to Maja Novakovic for Then Comes the Evening.

BEST DOCUMENTARY (offered by The Romanian Cultural Institute)

SENZA LATTE (MILKLESS)

Lidia Ilie | Romania

The Best Film awards goes to a very personal documentary. We liked its simplicity, its intimacy and the creative way of telling a multi-layered generational story. It captures the emotional cost of migration in the European Union. It has at its heart the inevitability of change. The award goes to Milkless by Lidia Ilie.

HONORABLE MENTION

DEAR DARKNESS (UNDE LUMINOASE)

Samuel N. Schwarz | Germany

The jury gives a special commendation to Dear Darkness. The film explores the experience of blindness in a visual, imaginative way, opening a window to a different way of experiencing the world.

ROMANIA

BEST DOCUMENTARY (offered by HBO)

NOI ÎMPOTRIVA NOASTRĂ (US AGAINST US)

Andra Tarara | Romania

For the touching and honest way with which the director explored her relationship with her father as well as, for the authenticity of their conversations regarding the malady that affected both their lives. The jury appreciated the collaborative work of two filmmakers from different generations, and the communication they achieved, father and daughter, through the medium of film.

BEST DIRECTION (offered by The Romanian Cultural Institute)

NANU TUDOR

Olga Lucovnicova | Belgium, Hungary, Portugal

The jurors decided to give the award for best direction to Olga Lucovnicova for the artistically organic way the director used her camera to explore her childhood memories and her traumatic relationship with her uncle. The camera's close-ups powerfully juxtapose intimate details of a seemingly idyllic past with the shock of the revealing conversations with someone who played such an important although not very welcome role in her early life.

HONORABLE MENTION

SPIONI DE OCAZIE (OCASSIONAL SPIES)

Oana Giurgiu | Romania

For the originality the director re-enacted an unknown chapter of 2WW blending the personal with the  wider historical context. In narrating the deeds of a group of young volunteers the director achieved to demonstrate the courage and the idealism that is needed for such great acts of heroism.

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE

BEST DOCUMENTARY (offered by The German Consulate Sibiu)

WOLVES AT THE BORDERS (NĂVALA LUPILOR)

Martin Páv | Czech Republic

In WOLVES AT THE BORDERS Martin Pav skillfully crafts a story that explores themes of ecological and environmental change, distrust of outsiders, and how polarized opinions and entrenched perspectives undermine opportunities for understanding and collaboration. A layered, perceptive film that subtly reveals important truths about human nature and our conflicted relationship with the natural world, WOLVES AT THE BORDERS is accomplished filmmaking by a talented director on topics relevant to contemporary Central and Eastern Europe yet relatable to audiences everywhere.

HONORABLE MENTION

NUN OF YOUR BUSINESS (FAC CE VREAU ÎN MĂNĂSTIREA MEA)

Ivana Marinić Kragić | Serbia, Croatia

In NUN OF YOUR BUSINESS Ivana Marinic sheds light on an often hidden world under forms of apparent normality, such as love between women in convents. She creatively incorporates narrative resources of fiction and animation film into the language of the documentary.

NEW VOICES IN DOCUMENTARY CINEMA

BEST DOCUMENTARY (offered by The Romanian Cultural Institute)

NIGHT NURSERY (CREȘA DE NOAPTE)

Moumouni Sanou, Burkina Faso

A very well-made African documentary, made by an emerging African filmmaker that allowed us to see a very far away reality, yet one that seemed very close to our own, and that reflects on post-colonial issues. A reality portrayed with a lot of honesty, sensibility and compassion – without any obvious interference from the director, nor from the camera.  Given this is the New Voices Competition, we felt it’s even more appropriate to give the award to a first time filmmaker, encouraging him to keep thriving in telling unique compelling stories.

HONORABLE MENTION

FOR YOUR COMFORT AND YOUR SAFETY (PENTRU CONFORTUL ȘI SIGURANȚA DUMNEAVOASTRĂ)

Frédéric Mainçon | France

We decided to give a special mention to a film with an experimental approach, for the original subject that has never been tackled before and for the way the film managed to give a voice to the unseen faces guarding our museums. Last but not least, we have appreciated the contrast between the fine contemporary art and the meaningful stories of the people guarding them and us.

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