As the 2018 DOXA Documentary Film Festival came to a close last Sunday night, the annual DOXA Awards were announced in advance of the Festival’s closing night screening.
Four juried awards were presented to the following;
The Feature Documentary Award : Mercedes Dominioni’s The Creator of Universes.
Of the winning film, jury members Tom Charity, Steffanie Ling and Anoushka Ratnarajah stated: “We celebrate Mercedes Dominioni’s patient and caring The Creator of Universes, a layered, captivating film built around a unique collaboration between the filmmaker’s teenage brother Juan, and their grandmother Rosa. This is a film of extraordinary formal creativity balancing Juan’s dramatic home movie/Telenovela footage (often very funny) with a sense of real life spilling over the edges. Dominioni’s love for these characters is simply transmitted.”
Honourable Mention: Shevaun Mizrahi’s Distant Constellations “A poetic portrait of the inhabitants of an old people’s home in Turkey remarkable for its intimacy, humour and cinematography.”
The Colin Low Award for Canadian Documentary : Laura Bari’s Primas.
Jury members Ana Carruzales, Kelly Maxwell, and Susi Porter-Bopp said of the film: “Primas is a timely cinematic tale that travels beyond survival, walking the audience through the inconceivable with artistic sensibility, gently amplifying the voices of these courageous, unforgettable cousins. Filmmaker Laura Bari’s empathetic camera fiercely refuses to shy away from a heinous reality that is still so sadly relevant for young women. With poetic, sublime and rough imagery on its edges, Bari sheds a triumphant light by capturing the beautiful spirit of our Primas.”
Honourable Mention: Simon Plouffe’s Those Who Come Will Hear, for its evocative and unique representation of the languages, speakers, and context in Northern Quebec.
The Nigel Moore Award for Youth Programming : Bing Liu’s Minding the Gap.
The jury of Steven Hawkins, Jacob Saltzberg, Tegan Dobson, Anna Hetherington, and Maya Biderman stated: “The film follows a group of three young men who bond together through friendship and skateboarding to escape violent families in a small town. Bing has an acute ability to extract raw emotions from his friends. He portrays the cruel cycles of domestic violence, and shows the ongoing dynamic effects these have on all the relationships surrounding them. This allows him to paint a picture of harsh realities that would otherwise be masked by society’s policing of machismo ideals. This is an important film for adolescents and parents alike to see, and therefore a clear choice to receive this award. Congratulations, Bing.”
Honourable Mention: Jules Koostachin & Rick Miller’s Butterfly Monument, “Equal parts a memorial to Shannen Koostachin, and a spotlight on the importance of her advocacy work. It shows the impact one young life can have on both a cause and community, and reminds us that spirit is transcendent.”
The Short Documentary Award : Paloma Martinez’s Cristanto Street.
Jury members Michelle Mason, Tony Massil, and Sonia Medel awarded the prize “for exposing the collateral social damage of contemporary racism and land cartels with surprising tenderness and hope. On a little street in San Francisco, Paloma Martinez captured the beauty of community and the true meaning of home in a powerful short with global implications.”
Honourable Mention: Michelle Latimer’s Nuuca for “its quiet urgency and artfulness in a timely meditation on land, tying the violent nature of resource extraction to the exploitation of indigenous women.”
For more details about the award winning documentaries and jurist biographies, visit doxafestival.ca/festival-awards.
Return next spring for more great documentary films from around the world at DOXA 2019.