Laszlo Nemes’ ‘Son of Saul’ Wins Zagreb Film Festival

Hungarian movie “Son of Saul,” directed by Laszlo Nemes, won the Golden Pram for best film at the 13th Zagreb Film Festival in Croatia on Saturday. The jury said: “It’s shattering. It’s a masterpiece. It’s unforgettable.” The pic is Hungary’s entry for the foreign-language film Oscar.

Special mentions went to Danish entry “A War” by Tobias Lindholm, and the Australian film “Tanna” by Bentley Dean and Martin Butler. The jury consisted of Levan Koguashvili, the director of “Blind Dates,” the winner of the Golden Pram last year, producer Christoph Thoke, and director Jessica Woodworth.

Dutch title “Prince” by Sam de Jong won the PLUS program, which is for films aimed at a younger audience. The jury was composed of high-school students from Zagreb. “We chose this film as a representative of something different,” the jury said. “Although all the films focused on complex love affairs typical of our age, this film includes the issue of the lack of social acceptance. ‘Prince’ inspires us to strive for our dreams regardless of the obstacles.”

The award for best Croatian film in the Checkers section went to “The Beast” by Daina O. Pusic. “’The Beast’ is a daring, original and provocative film, signalling the arrival of a really talented filmmaker. Bravura filmmaking with a heart, anchored by performances of two fearless actresses,” the jury commented.

The audience award was won by the French film “The New Kid,” directed by Rudi Rosenberg.

During the nine-day festival, 109 films were screened at six locations. It hosted 125 guests, including the lead actors in Iceland’s Oscar entry “Rams,” Sigurdur Sigurjonsson and Theodor Juliusson, the director of the Bosnian and Herzegovinian Oscar candidate “Our Everyday Life,” Ines Tanovic, the director of the Czech Oscar candidate “Home Care,” Slavek Horak, and the director of Brazil’s “Neon Bull,” Gabriel Mascaro.

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