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Jerusalem Film Festival Crowns ‘Red Crow,’ ‘The Dive,’ ‘Dogman’

Yona Rozenkier’s “The Dive” and Tsivia Barkai-Yacov’s “Red Cow” have scooped The Haggiag Award for Best Israeli Feature Film and the Anat Pirchi Award for Best Debut Film at the 35th edition of the Jerusalem Film Festival.

“The Dive” and “Red Cow” shared the award Thursday for best debut film. Produced by Efrat Cohen and Koby Mizrahi ,”The Dive” follows three brothers who reunite for one weekend to bury their father in their native kibbutz on the border with Lebanon before going to war. The movie, which also played at Locarno, is being sold by Stray Dogs.

“Red Cow” is set in an Israeli settlement in East Jerusalem and follows the sexual awakening of a teenage girl living with her widowed father, who is an Orthodox Jew. The movie world premiered at Berlin in the Generation section.

The Israeli competition jury, which comprised Romanian director Calin Peter Netzer, Israeli director Anat Yuta Zuria, Polish director Małgorzata Szumowska and French cinematographer Caroline Champetier, said both films stood out for “their profound qualities and unique cinematic modes of expression, each in its own special way.”

Matteo Garrone’s “Dogman” (pictured) won the Gabriel Sherover Foundation Award for best international film, and Ali Abbasi’s “Border” won a special mention. The International Competitions Jury comprised British film critic Fionnuala Halligan, The Match Factory CEO Michael Weber and Israeli director Elite Zexer.

Tomer Heymann’s “Jonathan Agassi Saved My Life” won the Van Leer award for best Israeli documentary film. Heymann previously directed “Who’s Gonna Love Me Now?”, which won the Panorama audience award at Berlin.

Produced by Ayelet Kait and Amir Harel, “Jonathan Agassi Saved My Life” chronicles the life of Jonathan Agassi, a global gay porn star, over a period of eight years. The jury praised the documentary “for the honesty we experienced while viewing, and for the way in which the truth is revealed to us.”

The festival continues with a final weekend of screenings and wraps Sunday.

Key Awards:

The Haggiag Award for Best Israeli Feature Film: “The Dive,” Yona Rozenkier; “Red Cow,” Tsivia Barkai-Yacov

The Anat Pirchi Award for Best Israeli Debut Film: “The Dive,” Yona Rozenkier; “Red Cow,” Tsivia Barkai-Yacov

Van Leer Award for Best Documentary Film: “Jonathan Agassi Saved My Life,” Tomer Heymann

Van Leer Prize for Director of Documentary Film: Shaked Goren, “My War Hero Uncle”

Dalia Sigan Award for Screenplay: “The Oslo Diaries,” Mor Loushy and Daniel Sivan

Haggiag Award for Best Actor: Yoel Rozenkier, Micah Rozenkier, and Yona Rozenkier, “The Dive”

Haggiag Award for Best Actress: Avigayil Koevary, “Red Cow”

Audience Favorite Award for Feature Film: “Redemption,” Joseph Madmony and Boaz Yehonatan Yacov

Audience Favorite Award for Documentary Film: “Wild Kids,” Tal Pesses

Best International Feature Film: “Dogman,” Matteo Garrone

Special Mention: “Border,” Ali Abbassi

Best International Debut Film: “Sauvage,” Camille Vidal-Naquet

FIPRESCI Award for Best Israeli Debut Film: “Virgins,” Keren Ben Rafael

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