Cannes – The short film award winners from across the programmes

As the dust settles on yet another Cannes Film Festival, the various programmes across the biggest film festival in the world have once again honoured numerous short films.

The big winner of the festival's official short film competition was Lebanese animation Waves ’98 (Dir. Ely Dagher, Lebanon, 2015) about a teenager who – becoming disillusioned with Beirut – finds himself becoming lost in the depths of the city. The film sees Dagher exploring his relationship with his homeland and will undoubtedly begin to appear and festivals across Europe and beyond in the coming months.

WAVES'98 Trailer from Beaverandbeaver on Vimeo.

In the Cinéfondation section – consisting of 18 student films from across the world – the first prize winner was US film Share (Dir. Pippa Bianco, USA, 2015). Emanating from the AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women, the film follows the aftermath of a sexual assault which has been videoed. It’s slow and languid pace – and constant sense of fear as the main character sees the video of her assault shared amongst more and more people – has seen some comparisons made with the likes of Haneke and The Dardenne Brothers. It will be interesting to see if Bianco will carry this on into feature work – a feature which is guaranteed to show in Cannes which, along with 15’000 EUR, is the prize. Second place and 11,250 EUR went to Chilean film Locas Perdidas (Lost Queens) (Dir. Ignacio Juricic Merillán, Chile, 2015) from the Carrera de Cine y TV Universidad de Chile, a film set in 1969 about a teenager who – after a raid – fears his family will discover he is a drag queen. Join third prize was shared by The Return of Erkin (Dir. Maria Guskova, Russia, 2015) about a man who returns from prison and Victor XX (Dir. Ian Garrido López, Spain, 2015) about someone dealing with gender confusion.

The jury of the short film and Cinéfondation section was headed by Abderrahmane Sissako and comprised of Cécile de France, Joana Hadjithomas, Daniel Olbrychski and Rebecca Zlotowski.

Over at Director’s Fortnight, the short film prize went to UK film Rate Me (Dir. Fyzal Boulifa, UK, 2015) a portrait of a teenage escort who goes by the name of Coco. Boulifa has been previously lauded for such movies as The Curse (Dir. Fyzal Boulifa, UK, 2012), which was nominated for a BAFTA in 2013.

In the parallel Critics Week section, the Sony CineAlta Discovery Prize for short films went to Varicella (Dir. Fulvio Risuleo, Italy, 2014), a story of family who worry about Chicken Pox and the effects it will have on everyone in their brood, while the Canal+ Award went to the violent, stylised and dialogue free Romanian film Ramona (Dir. Andrei Crețulescu, Romania, 2015) the third part of a trilogy consisting of Bad Penny (Dir. Andrei Crețulescu, Romania, 2013) and Kowalski (Dir. Andrei Crețulescu, Romania, 2014).

The Critics Week jury consisted of Ronit Elkabetz, Katell Quillévéré, Peter Suschitzky, Andréa Picard and Boyd Van Hoeij

25 May 2015, by Laurence Boyce