Locarno 2018: Golden Leopard goes to Yeo Siew Hua’s A Land Imagined

The 71st Locarno Film Festival came to a close today and the awards have been announced. The top prize was taken by Yeo Siew Hua’s A Land Imagined, a dreamlike noir about a policeman searching Singapore for missing migrant worker.

Yolande Zauberman got the Jury Prize for her crushing documentary about child rape in a closely knit Hasidic community in Israel. Dominga Sotomayer will have been a popular choice, picking up the Best Director for Tarde Para Morir Joven. British first time director Richard Billingham received a special mention for Ray & Liz, an unstinting and indeed pitiless autobiographical portrait of his parents.

Acting honours went to debutante actress Andra Guti playing the eponymous role in the Romanian pregnancy drama Alice T and Ki Joobong for his portrait of a poet in Hong Sangsoo’s melancholic comedy Hotel by the River. Sara Fattahi won best film for Chaos in the Filmmakers of the Present sidebar, and the special jury prize went to Nicole Vogele for Closing Time.

The Signs of Life best film award went to The Fragile House, directed by Lin Zi and best debut film went to Eva Trobisch for Alles Ist Gut. Spike Lee’s BlackKklansman proved a popular choice with the public, winning the Prix du Public. Artistic director Carlo Chatrian – who leaves Locarno to take over the Berlin Film Festival – presided over the projection of almost 300 films which included a Leo McCary retrospective. Ethan Hawke and Meg Ryan also attended to receive special prizes.

International Competition

Pardo d’oro

Jury Prize
M (Yolande Zauberman)

Best Director
TARDE PARA MORIR JOVEN (Dominga Sotomayor)

Best Actress
Andra Guți for ALICE T.  (Radu Muntean)

Best Actor
KI Joobong for GANGBYUN HOTEL (Hotel by the River) di HONG Sangsoo, Corea del Sud

Special Mention
RAY & LIZ (Richard Billingham)

Filmmakers of the Present

Best Film
CHAOS di Sara Fattahi,

Best Emerging Director

Special Jury Prize
CLOSING TIME (Nicole Vögele)

Special Mentions
FAUSTO di Andrea Bussmann, Messico / Canada
Rose, personaggio di L’ÉPOQUE di Matthieu Bareyre, Francia

Signs of Life

Best Film
HAI SHANG CHENG SHI (The Fragile House) (Lin Zi)

Fundación Casa Wabi – Mantarraya Award

First Feature
ALLES IST GUT (Eva Trobisch)

Swatch Art Peace Hotel Award
RŪGŠTUS MIŠKAS (Acid Forest) (Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė)

Special Mention
TIRSS, RIHLAT ALSOO’OUD ILA ALMAR’I (Erased, Ascent of the Invisible) (Ghassan Halwani)

Prix du Public UBS
BLACKKKLANSMAN di Spike Lee, Stati Uniti

Variety Piazza Grande Award
LE VENT TOURNE di Bettina Oberli, Svizzera / Francia

The 71st Locarno Film Festival will take place from 1-11 August 2018.

John Bleasdale | @drjonty

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