Sarajevofilmmaker Jasmila Zbanic's won year's Golden Bear for her moving feature debut Grbavicaabout the traumas of war as a mother and daughter try to come to terms with thelegacy of the Bosnian conflict.
Theco-production between Austria's Coop99 Filmproduktion, Bosnia's DeblokadaFilmproduction, Germany's Noirfilm Filmproduktion and Croatia's Jadran Filmalso received the Ecumenical Jury's Award.
Zbanicsaid it felt like 'I am dreaming that I am in Berlin and will wake up fiveminutes later in Sarajevo. Thankyou for being so liberal for inviting a smallfilm from such a small country and a small budget.'
Zbanictook the opportunity of the ceremony's platform to remind the audience and theTV viewers that 'although the war in Bosnia ended some 13 years ago, warcriminals Karadzic and Mladic still live in Europe freely. They have not beencaptured for organising rape of women in Bosnia, killing 100,000 people andexpelling 1 million people from their houses. 'This is still Europe and no-oneis interested in capturing them. I hope this [film] will change your view ofBosnia and this Bear will not be disappointed when he sees Bosnia.'
Thepolitical dimension of this year's Berlinale was also emphasised by the awardingof the Best Director Silver Bear for Michael Winterbottom and Mat Whitecross's TheRoad To Guantanamo which had its world premiere justtwo days before the publication of the UN report on the camp.
The threemen who were detained at Guantanomo and are portrayed in the film - RizwanAhmed, Farhad Harun and Waqar Siddiqui - were in Berlin for the awards ceremonyand joined Winterbottom and Whirtecross on stage.
Inaddition to recognising films which tackled political issues and the depictionof contemporary reality, the international jury under the presidency ofCharlotte Rampling, also honoured the achievements of the local German filmindustry which was present in all of the Berlinale's sections with a remarkablevibrancy and diversity this year.
The two actingBears went to Sandra Hueller (Requiem) andMoritz Bleibtreu (The Elementary Particles) while aSilver Bear for an outstanding contribution to Juergen Vogel for hisachievement as co-producer, co-writer and main actor in Matthias Glasner's TheFree Will.
Inaddition, German producers were partners on the Golden Bear winner Grbavicaand Rodrigo Moreno's El Custodio which hadbeen backed by the Berlinale's World Cinema Fund.
Summingup the jury's work this year, Charlotte Rampling said: 'I feelhonoured and privileged to have collaborated with such finely-tuned artistsand hopefully with integrity, generosity and freedom of spirit we havefound ways together to choose what we feel from an enormous body of work toreflect - in the most profound way - the mood of the world today.'