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SHORTS Portugal

The Fall grabs the main prize at Vila do Conde


- The French animation has won the Grand Prix in the International Competition at the annual Portuguese short-film celebration

The Fall grabs the main prize at Vila do Conde
The Fall by Boris Labbé

This year’s edition of Curtas Vila do Conde has ended with the Grand Prix going to the French film The Fall, directed by Boris Labbé. The intense short animation, replete with biblical imagery and urgent music that depicts the fall of man and his descent into sin, was described by the festival’s jury as “a piece of pure cinema”. The film previously screened in this year’s Cannes Critics’ Week.

The Best Animation Award went to another French animation, Raymonde or the Vertical Escape by Sarah Van Den Boom. It’s an anthropomorphic story of an old woman whose chaste and religious lifestyle begins to wear her down, and her desire for sex becomes a focal part of her existence. Best Documentary went to Madness by João Viana, an earnest and sometimes surreal depiction of mental illness made with the inmates of a psychiatric hospital. Best Fiction went to the US film Fry Day, directed by Laura Moss. The Audience Award went to the mid-length animation This Magnificent Cake! by Emma De Swaef and Marc James Roel. The follow-up to their popular film Oh Willy! is a clever and surreal anthology story centred on the colonial past of the Netherlands.

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In the festival’s National Competition, Best Movie went to Where the Summer Goes (Chapters on Youth) by David Pinheiro Vicente, which you can read more on here. The Award for Best Director went to Ana Moreira for her beguiling debut, Aquaparque. Moreira, who is better known in her native Portugal as an actress who has starred in the likes of Miguel Gomes’ Tabu [+see also:
film review
interview: Miguel Gomes
interview: Miguel Gomes
film profile
, also saw her film win the festival’s nomination for the European Film Awards’ Short Film category. The National Competition’s Audience Award went to the exceedingly clever and popular stop-motion animation Between the Shadows by Alice Eça Guimarães and Mónica Santos.

In the festival’s Experimental Competition, the US film Another Movie by Morgan Fisher got the nod for Best Film, with a Special Mention going to Comfort Stations by Anja Dornieden and Juan David González Monroy.

In Curtinhas – the festival’s section for youngsters complete with a jury of children – the main prize was awarded to the animation The Highway Rat by Jeroen Jaspaert, with Special Mentions going to Ant by Julia Ocker and Shadow Boxer by Andreas Bøggild Monies.

In the Take One! Competition, dedicated to film-school movies, Amor, Avenidas Novas by Duarte Coimbra won Best Movie, while Best Director went to A Ver o Mar by André Puertas and Ana Oliveira. This year saw the competition welcome films from European film schools for the first time, with the Polish short Their Voices by Eri Mizutani winning the Award for Best Film.

Finally, João Pombeiro won the Music Video Competition with Back to Nature by Nightmares on Wax.

Here is the full list of winners:

International Competition

Grand Prix by DCN Beers
The Fall - Boris Labbé (France)

Best Animation
Raymonde or the Vertical Escape – Sarah Van Den Boom (France)

Best Documentary 
Madness - João Viana (Portugal/France/Mozambique)

Best Fiction
Fry Day - Laura Moss (USA)

International Competition Audience Award
This Magnificent Cake! - Emma De Swaef and Marc James Roel (Belgium/France/Netherlands)

Vila Do Conde Short Film Nomination for the European Film Awards
Aquaparque - Ana Moreira (Portgual)

National Competition

Best Movie
Where the Summer Goes (Chapters on Youth) - David Pinheiro Vicente (Portugal)

Best Director
Aquaparque – Ana Moreira

National Audience Award
Between the Shadows - Alice Eça Guimarães and Mónica Santos (Portugal)

Experimental Competition

Best Film
Another Movie - Morgan Fisher (USA)
Special Mention
Comfort Stations - Anja Dornieden and Juan David González Monroy (Germany)


Best Film
The Highway Rat - Jeroen Jaspaert (UK)
Special Mentions
Shadow Boxer - Andreas Bøggild Monies (Denmark)
Ant - Julia Ocker (Germany)

Take One! Competition

Best Film
Amor, Avenidas Novas - Duarte Coimbra (Portugal)

Best Director
A Ver o Mar - André Puertas and Ana Oliveira (Portugal)

Best European Film
Their Voices - Eri Mizutani (Poland)

Best Music Video
Back to Nature (Nightmares on Wax) - João Pombeiro

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