Cannes, Sundance winners take home prizes
Tizza Covi and Rainer Frimmel’s “La Pivellina” and Lynn Shelton’s “Humpday” shared top kudos at the Gijon Film Festival, which wrapped Saturday.Cannes Directors’ Fortnight player “Pivellina” took best picture and actress for Patrizia Gerardi, playing a circus worker who temporarily adopts a two-year-old girl. Winner of a Sundance special jury prize, “Humpday,” about two straight buddies who make a gay porno pic, took director for Shelton and while Mark Duplass and Joshua Leonard shared actor honor. Gijon underscored a current trend in indie cinema towards off-kilter comedies or quirky dramas portraying a world that appears to have gone awry. Alain Guiraudie’s “The King of Escape,” about a middle-aged gay man who falls under a teen girl’s spell, took Gijon’s special jury prize. Set in a Uruguayan village in the middle of nowhere, Alvaro Brechner’s Western-esque “Bad Day to Go Fishing,” which tips its hat to the Coen brothers, took art direction. Bobby Paunescu’s “Francesca,” an offbeat immigration story won the Fipresci Intl. Federation of Film Critics Prize. Philippe Lioret’s “Welcome,” about a young Iraqi Kurd trapped in France but determined to swim the Channel to a new life in England, took best screenplay for a script by Lioret, Emmanuel Courcol and Olivier Adam. One of Spain’s most prestigious events, Gijon boasted a strong series of Q&As with directors including Germany’s Fatih Akin, who opened Gijon with grungy Hamburg restaurant-set comedy “Soul Kitchen,” which played to large applause. “Kitchen,” Akin said, put his “German-Turkey framework” behind him, adding, “What I had to say about the German-Turkish world I’ve said. That chapter’s now closed.”
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