email print share on Facebook share on Twitter share on reddit pin on Pinterest

GIJÓN 2019 Awards

Vitalina Varela shines bright at the Gijón Film Festival

by 

- The latest effort by Portuguese maestro Pedro Costa continues raking in the awards, having scooped the top prize at the Spanish gathering, where other European films also excelled

Vitalina Varela shines bright at the Gijón Film Festival
Pedro Costa receiving the Award for Best Feature for Vitalina Varela (© FICX)

After having scooped the Golden Leopard at the most recent Locarno Film Festival and racked up further wins at other more recent festivals, such as France’s La-Roche-sur-Yon, the latest (and inimitable) work by outstanding Portuguese filmmaker Pedro Costa, Vitalina Varela [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, has come out on top at the 57th Gijón International Film Festival. The jury, made up of directors Andrés Duque and Meritxell Colell, director of the Chicago Film Festival Mimi Plauché, distributor Christophe Mercier and musician Juan Pedro Martín “Pucho”, the frontman of the band Vetusta Morla, handed the Principality of Asturias Award for Best Feature in the Official Section to this new instalment in the Portuguese helmer’s cinematic world, an impressive chiaroscuro about mourning and despair in the Cape Verdean immigrant community in Lisbon, narrated through the moving figure of its protagonist. On the technical level, the creative process behind this chiaroscuro, courtesy of Leonardo Simões, was also rewarded by means of the Best Cinematography Award.

(The article continues below - Commercial information)

In addition, other non-European films stood out on the winners’ list in the Official Section, such as Saturday Fiction by China’s Lou Ye and Sword of Trust by US director Lynn Shelton, but European output also reared its head in the form of Rounds [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Stephan Komandarev
film profile
]
by Bulgaria’s Stephan Komandarev, which received the Best Actress Award for the performance by Irini Zhambonas. Meanwhile, a special spot on the awards list was reserved for a documentary hailing from Asturias itself (in co-production with the UK), Work, or to Whom Does the World Belong [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
, in which first-time director Elisa Cepedal plunges into the world of the region’s miners. The movie picked up the Special Jury Prize.

Spanish cinema shone especially bright on the winners’ list, as the short film Lonely Rivers, directed by DoP Mauro Herce, triumphed in its respective category of the Official Section. Meanwhile, the Spanish Cinema Jury Prize for Best Feature, which comes with the RCService Award for its director, was conferred upon the faux documentary My Mexican Bretzel [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Nuria Giménez, which was also singled out with the ALMA Award for Best Screenplay for a Spanish Film. In addition, Enero [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, the directorial debut by photographer Ione Atenea, took home none other than the Audience Award for Best European Feature Debut.

Since the arrival of Alejandro Díaz Castaño at its helm, the Gijón Film Festival has managed to establish a curious consensus between the jury members and the film critics, and this year has been no different, as awards have so far been bestowed upon titles by Eugène Green, Hong Sang-Soo and, now, Portuguese master Costa.

Here is the list of the main award winners:

Official Section - Feature Films

Best Feature Film
Vitalina Varela [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
- Pedro Costa (Portugal)

Best Director
Lou Ye - Saturday Fiction (China)

AISGE Award for Best Actress
Irini Zhambonas - Rounds [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Stephan Komandarev
film profile
]
(Bulgaria/Serbia/France)

AISGE Award for Best Actor
Marc Maron - Sword of Trust (USA)

Best Script
Lynn Shelton - Sword of Trust

Best Cinematography
Leonardo Simões - Vitalina Varela

“Gil Parrondo” Award for Best Art Direction
Zhong Cheng - Saturday Fiction

Special Jury Award
Work, or to Whom Does the World Belong [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
 - Elisa Cepedal (UK/Spain)

Youth Jury Award
Lillian [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Andreas Horvath
film profile
]
- Andreas Horvath (Austria)

Official Section - Short Films

Best Short Film
Lonely Rivers – Mauro Herce (Spain)

Special Mention
Cavalcade - Johann Lurf (Austria)

Youth Jury Award
Leaking Life - Shunsaku Hayashi (Japan)

Rellumes

Best Film
Sole [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Carlo Sironi
film profile
]
- Carlo Sironi (Italy/Poland)

Best Director
Luke Lorentzen - Midnight Family (Mexico/US)

Other awards

Enfants Terribles Audience Award for Best Feature Film
Minuscule - Mandibles From Far Away [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
- Thomas Szabo, Hélène Giraud (France)

Grand Audience Award “Fundación Foro Jovellanos del Principado de Asturias”
Marona's Fantastic Tale [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
- Anca Damian (Romania/France/Belgium)

Audience Award to Best European First Film
Enero [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
- Ione Atenea (Spain)

Spanish Cinema Jury Award for Best Feature Film + RCservice Award for Best Director
My Mexican Bretzel [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
– Nuria Giménez (Spain)

ALMA Award for Best Script of a Spanish Feature Film
Nuria Giménez - My Mexican Bretzel

DELUXE DCP Award to the Feature Film
White on White [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Théo Court
film profile
]
 – Théo Court (Spain/Chile/France/Germany)

CIMA Prize for Best Feature Film Directed by a Woman
System Crasher [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Nora Fingscheidt
film profile
]
– Nora Fingscheidt (Germany)

RTPA Award for Best Asturian Feature Film
Cuca (Retrato de una mujer) - Carlos Navarro (Spain)
Special Mention
Swab 2000: Steve Wynn & Australian Blonde, live at Moby Dick Club - Aure Roces (Spain)

Asturies Curtiumetraxe RTPA Award
Gniele baila - Ana Izarzugaza (Spain)

(The article continues below - Commercial information)

(Translated from Spanish)

Did you enjoy reading this article? Please subscribe to our newsletter to receive more stories like this directly in your inbox.