Awards for 2012

Gold Hugo

New Directors Competition

WINNER

The Exam: Péter Bergendy
A film which combines the intricate plotting of a Cold War secret agent thriller with the serious undercurrent concerning deeper issues of personal loyalty versus the police state; it exudes a quiet confidence, remarkable in a new filmmaker.

IN-COMPETITION










Best Short Film

WINNER

Return: Shay Levi
Awarded for its extraordinary exploration of cultural dislocation as seen through the eyes of a young man who returns to his Israeli home after a life-changing trip to India, director Shay Levi wisely chooses to avoid obvious melodramatic touches. Instead, he tells the story through nuance and the subtle play of a moving camera. The result is that we are taken into the pained and confused mind of the protagonist yet given enough information to empathize with the people to whom he can no longer relate. The jury wishes to recognize that this achievement is all the more noteworthy because RETURN is the work of a student filmmaker. It gives us hope for a future of challenging and rewarding films from Mr. Levi.

IN-COMPETITION






































Yardbird: Michael Spiccia
Jessica Mitchell














Best Documentary

WINNER

The Believers: Clayton Brown, Monica Long Ross
This tightly constructed cinematic argument with strong characters puts a human face on scientific research and discovery acknowledging our universal understanding of human failings in our desire to achieve success. In THE BELIEVERS, the filmmakers remind us just how inexact science really is sometimes.

IN-COMPETITION




















Best Foreign Language Film

IN-COMPETITION

INTERCOM Competition

WINNER

Best International Feature

WINNER

Holy Motors: Leos Carax
For the sheer beauty, originality and breathtaking scope of its cinematic vision.

IN-COMPETITION



















After Dark Competition

WINNER

Antiviral: Brandon Cronenberg
The film is the work of a budding visionary--full of inventive and effective artistry, and a clear sense of where we are going as a celebrity-worshipping society.

IN-COMPETITION







Silver Hugo

Best Actor

WINNER

Holy Motors: Denis Lavant
For breathing life into a character who is alternately tragic, hilarious, shocking, profound, hideous, beautiful, wise - but always human - and, quite simply, unlike anything we've ever seen before.

Best Actress

WINNER

The Last Sentence: Ulla Skoog
For showing, with great subtlety and skill, the depth, complexity and humanity of a seemingly "ordinary" human-being.

New Directors Competition

WINNER

Flower Buds: Zdenek Jiráský
A glum image of current Czech society that is illuminated by quirky observation and even an occasional touch of humor. An impressive and sophisticated beginning.

Best Cinematography

WINNER

Holy Motors: Yves Cape, Caroline Champetier
For images that were achingly beautiful and inventive, and somehow managed to be always perfectly in sync with the confounding universe of the narrative.

Best Animated Short

WINNER

Oh Willy...: Emma De Swaef, Marc James Roels
The jury found the film to be a treat, full of narrative surprises and delightful tonal shifts, and that rare beast of a film - one where the material design itself (a world covered in fuzzy wool) lends an unmistakable expressivity to the landscape of the film and characters in it. The narrative's tender, scary, and surreal episodes culminate in a fantasy with an unexpected and captivating conclusion.

Best Narrative/Live Action Short

WINNER

Paul: Adam Bizanski
Awarded for its effective mix of a fantastical story with the visual elements of noir, and for a central character whose plight is lovingly conveyed with Keatonesque simplicity. This tale of a dog-faced man who sets out to find his stolen pet fish brilliantly walks the tightrope between magical realism and a dark night of the soul. The fact that there are no missteps is due to its effective mixture of cinematic dexterity and a keen eye for the foibles of human behavior. The jury was particularly impressed by the central performance. Little more than a bodysuit made of crepe, Paul proved to be one of the most fully rounded and emotionally affecting characters that we have seen in a long time.

Best Documentary Short

WINNER

Paraíso: Nadav Kurtz
With a moment of calm daybreak followed by harnesses, ropes, and the calculated preparation of a great heist movie, director Nadav Kurtz drops the audience of his short film PARADISE into a meditation through the perspective of three Chicago window washers. Topically a film about men at work, this documentary incorporates fluid camera movements, beautiful photography, steady editing, and a lovely yet understated guitar soundtrack. The subjects discuss marriage, growing old, death, the afterlife, and teaching the next generation while building inhabitants continue downtown - living, working, playing, and going to Starbucks.

Best Documentary

WINNER

Numbered: Uriel Sinai, Dana Doron
Visually stunning, compelling stories with surprising humor and wit edited into an impactful whole to remind us that the past lives on for the next generations. NUMBERED clearly demonstrates the importance of documenting the collective story of the Holocaust and other world genocide.

Special Mention

WINNER

The Repentant: Merzak Allouache
For exploring with great sensitivity the aftermath of atrocities in Algeria and the challenges of reconciliation.

Special Jury Prize

WINNER

After Lucia: Michel Franco
For being a film of great simplicity and restraint, that nevertheless moved and shocked the jury.

After Dark Competition

WINNER

Sleep Tight: Jaume Balagueró
Jaume Balagueró's gift as a director of thrillers is his way with psychological tension, digging out worrying new ways to describe how the world is simply not ever a safe place to be. In SLEEP TIGHT, not even bed and a little bit of sleep are safe.

Gold Plaque

Special Achievement in Direction

WINNER

Todd and the Book of Pure Evil: David Winning
For the episode "Jungle Fever"

Best Animated Short

WINNER

Edmond Was a Donkey: Franck Dion
For its unique story of a young office drone who comes to accept the image others have of him, as well as for its ability to effectively and cinematically capture the essence of fable. Mixing black and white imagery, ironic voiceovers and a Buñuelian sense of the absurd, EDMOND WAS A DONKEY is that rare film that delights us with what it has to say as much as how it says it.

INTERCOM Competition

WINNERS




Best Dramatic Series

WINNER

Best Student Film

WINNER

Next Door Letters: Sascha Fülscher
Awarded both for its brave style (balancing a digi-folksy aesthetic with a hint of the grotesque), and its effectively shaped narrative. Based on a true story of teenage longing and burgeoning queer identity, the jury found it a touching and an impressive achievement.

Silver Plaque

Special Achievement: Direction

WINNER

Todd and the Book of Pure Evil: David Winning
For the episode "See You Later, Masturbator"

Best Narrative/Live Action Short

WINNER

Voice Over: Martín Rosete
For the film's art direction, technical mastery, riveting script, compact editing, elegant yet tongue-tied narrator, and a reminder of adolescent and adult struggles for life and love.

Documentary

WINNER

Special Achievement - Low Budget

WINNER

Certificate of Merit

Best Direction, Dramatic Series

WINNER

Special Mention

Best Narrative/Life Action Short

WINNER

Café Regular, Cairo: Ritesh Batra
For its effective and well-directed use of improvisation to create an intimacy not only between the characters onscreen, but between them and the audience as well.

Audience Choice Award

New Directors Competition

IN-COMPETITION


Best Documentary Feature

WINNER

Best Narrative Feature

WINNERS


Chicago Award

WINNER

Emerging Visionary Award

WINNER

J.A. Bayona
For bringing fresh insight, dynamism, and humanity to familiar genres.

Career Achievement Award

WINNERS



Founder's Award

WINNER

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