Mexican filmmaker Tatiana Huezo Sanchez’s El Lugar Mas Pequeno won the Grand Prix for Best Feature-Length Film at this year’s Visions du Réel international documentary festival in Switzerland’s Nyon.
Sanchez’s visually impressive panorama of life in a small village after the civil war in El Salvador was also presented with the Inter-Religious Jury’s prize.
The International Jury of filmmakers Jennifer Fox and Michael Madsen and producer/sales agent Clément Duboin gave their Grand Prix for Best Direction to Finland’s Mia Halme for Ikuisesti Sinun, a touching account of the complicated relationship between institutionalized children, their biological parents and their foster families, and a Special Mention for Manno Lanssens’ Epilogue about the last year in the life of a woman with terminal cancer.
Meanwhile, the jury judging the section dedicated to Swiss documentaries awarded the Prix SRF-SSR to David Bernet und Bettina Borgfeld’s Raising Resistance about the consequences of soy farming in Paraguay, and the Prix Création SSA/Suissimage to Yamina Zoutat’s Les Lessiveuses about mothers laundering their imprisoned sons’ clothing.
In addition, a new Audience Award, which had been created for films showing in the new sidebar Etat d’Esprit, went to Jarreth Merz’s An African Election about the presidential elections in Ghana in 2008.
A full list of prize-winners can be found at www.visionsdureel.ch.
According to the festival organizers, the first edition of Visions du Réel under the new director Luciano Barisone attracted 18,000 spectators despite the summer-like temperatures in the first five days.
In addition to such industry events as the DocOutlook International Market and pitching sessions, Nyon presented this year’s selection of documentaries to be featured on the Doc Alliance online distribution platform.
They are: The Good Life by Eva Mulvad (selected by CPH:DOX/Copenhagen), Brother Sister by Maria Mohr (selected by DOK Leipzig), Olda by Viera Cákanyová (selected by IDFF/Jihlava), Gunnar Goes God by Gunnar Hall Jensen (selected by Planete Doc/Warsaw) and Sira – Songs Of The Crescent Moon by Sandra Gysi and Ahmed Abdel Mohsen (selected by Visions du Réel/Nyon).