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Transylvania fest honors ‘No Return’

Cohan's detective story took best film and screenplay

Tales of grief and sexual magnetism won the night as the 10th Transylvania Film Festival wrapped Saturday, with top honors going to Miguel Cohan’s Argentine-Spanish pic “No Return.”

Called by jurors a “discourse on ethics disguised as a high-quality detective story,” pic took the kudo for film, screenplay and €15,000 ($21,500). Cohan was handed the trophy by fest honoree Jacqueline Bisset at the historic National Theater in Cluj-Napoca.

Runar Runarsson’s Icelandic entry, “Volcano,” a fraught study of aging and death, shared directing kudo with Romanian Constantin Popescu’s “Principles of Life,” about mid-life crises — an issue facing many members of the Romanian new wave of a few years ago.

Actress kudo went to Elodie Bouchez for her turn in Zeina Durra’s U.S. entry “The Imperialists Are Still Alive!” an ironic take on love lives in the Manhattan fast lane.

The special jury prize went to “A Useful Life” by Federico Veiroj of Spain for his “meaningful homage” to cinema.

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“She-Monkeys,” Swede Lisa Aschan’s look at passive-aggressive attraction between girls, won cinematography for Linda Wassberg’s unconventional lensing.

Serbian Nikola Lezaic’s “Tilva Ros,” a story of friendship amid industrial waste, won over critics, taking the Fipresci prize for its “honest depiction of wasted youth” done, as the jury wrote, with “so much innocence that it really conquered our hearts.”

Romanian-born French producer Marin Karmitz and local producer Oleg Mutuwere were honored for their contribution to cinema, as were Romanian filmmaker Lucian Pintilie and local thesp George Motoi.

Michael York, winner of the lifetime achievement kudo, had to cancel his appearance for health reasons but thanked auds via teleconference.

Marian Crisan’s poignant immigrant story “Morgen,” won the Romanian Days kudo. Bogdan George Apetri won best debut for “Outbound,” a tough look at life in prison.

Fest’s educational components and focus on historic film, such as the screening of restored war-time agitprop piece “Odessa in Flames” at a ruined palace, have added appeal to the fest as it evolves.

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