Chinese short scoops Oberhausen's main prize

The 63rd International Short Film Festival Oberhausen closed this past Tuesday with an award ceremony that saw Asian films come out on top.

The Chinese tableau vivant Qiu [Late Summer] by Cui Yi impressed the International Jury most by its simplicity and depiction of everyday life and was honoured with the Grand Prize of the City of Oberhausen.

The International Jury consisting of curators Ekaterina Degot, Kathrin Rhomberg, Chi-hui Yang and filmmakers Peter Nestler and Jaan Toomik, went on to award the festival’s ‘Principal Prize’ to the Thai production 500,000 Pee.

Director Chai Siris' work has previously been screened at Documenta Kassel and Venice. 500,000 Pee had its German festival premiere at Oberhausen which the jury found to be a “a beautifully meditative and deeply political film that explores how memory is constructed through human history, spirituality, monuments, cinema and violence.”

A Chinese production won the International Critics’ Prize (FIPRESCI Prize): Zheng Pian Zhi Wai [Off Takes] by Hao Jingban offers a self-reflective film on its medium and the understanding of the meaning of images.

Yet another Chinese production received the e-flux Prize: Animal Year by Zhong Su crafts a “visionary, animated portrait of dystopian future of humanity” concludes the International Jury. The film also received a special mention by the Jury of the Ministry for Family, Children, Youth, Culture and Sport of North Rhine-Westphalia.

The latter awarded its 1st Prize to an international festival premiere of Oni samo dolaze i odlaze [They just come and go] shot on a beach in Split in Croatia where young and old meet in all of their discrepancies.

The 2nd prize went to the directorial debut by Argentinian Ivan Jose Murgic Capriotti and Sofia Lena Monardo, Terrenal (En oposición al cielo) [Earthly (Opposite from Heaven)].

For “reversing the colonial perspective” the jury spoke out a special mention to Portuguese Ico Costa and his film Nyo Vweta Nafta shot on Super16 in Mozambique.

In the German Competition the Jury made up of curator Regina Barunge, film critic Dunja Bialas and producer Frieder Schlaich awarded the Prize for the best contribution to the German Competition to Ulu Braun's Die Herberge for a “digitally generated post-apocalyptic panorama”.

With El Manguito a graduate of the Academy of Medie Arts Cologne took home the 3sat Promotional Award. Director Laurentia Genske is hereby honoured for an innovative approach and holds chances for the broadcast of her documentary on the tv channel 3sat.

In the regional NRW Competition a “tribute to the early days of cinema” convinced the jury to award the Prize for the best contribution to the NRW Competition for Der Wechsel [The Exchange] by Markus Mischkowski and Kai Maria Steinkühler

As for the section Children's and Youth Cinema the young judges from the juries awarded the Prize of the Children's Jury to the international festival premiere of Scrap Dolls by Aude Cuenod. The film revolving around a youngster in Detroit also received the Prize of the Guest Jury of the International Children’s Film Festival Filem’on, Brussels.

Read more on the MuVi Awards HERE.

The full list of winners is HERE.

18 May 2017, by Sabine Kues