NewsCultureEcumenical Jury at 50th Molodist Film Festival announces winners

Ecumenical Jury at 50th Molodist Film Festival announces winners

(SIGNIS / INTERFILM). At the 50th International Molodist Film Festival in Kyiv, the Ecumenical Jury awarded prizes in three categories. The festival took place in hybrid form, i.e. partly online and partly physically on-site, from May 29 until June 6, 2021.

The prize for a full-length film of the International Competition went to After Love by Aleem Khan (United Kingdom, 2020). 

This powerful story with a strong script and visuals touches the deepest strings of the viewer’s soul by promoting acceptance and non-attachment to pain by embracing one’s life regardless of the situation one ended up in like the film’s main character did. The metaphoric use of nature is skilfully incorporated to reflect and foster the protagonist’s inner conflict as she follows her instinct and decides to address her sorrows rather than freeze them and let them ruin her from inside. She abandons jealousy for the good of understanding; she abandons a need to possess for the good of sharing; she abandons her grief for the good of moving on in life. The film advocates for mutual forgiveness and understanding as both outer and inner conflicts bring the main characters to the reconciliation with the late husband/lover/father and themselves. Regardless of diversity, the topic of reconciliation is crucial in the modern turbulent world, where humankind suffers devastating conflicts.

Into the Night by Kamila Tarabura (Poland, 2020) won the prize for the best short film.

This dynamic and complex story about a universal issue of the hard times one usually goes through as a teenager invokes contemplations about standing up for one’s true nature. We observe the main character’s evolution from pursuing a strong confrontation with the world, particularly with her mother and classmates, to breaking free through a spontaneous uncommon situation as she follows her impulses and makes friends with a girl who is her total opposite. The skillfully set sequence of events builds up a hopeful vibe as the characters embrace their own and each other’s personalities, release their emotions, and acknowledge their inner struggles. As the film focuses on identity, it suggests that one can overcome external circumstances that oppress their free will and self-expression. The optimistic message accomplishes the artistic quality of the film and the well-developed inner conflict of the protagonist.

In the student films category, the jury awarded its prize to Parole by Vojtěch Novotný (Czech Republic, 2020). 

This gripping and highly emotional story about a challenge to embrace inner combats resonates very well with the audience. The protagonist’s inner conflict, who is simultaneously his own antagonist, is at the centre of a well-developed plot. The viewer follows the young man along the path to understanding his inner struggle, which appears to be the source of his outer violence. The well-acted tension builds up as the main character, devastated by his coming of age strife, is challenged by his friends and his mother, and thus raises the issue of the crucial role these intimate relationships usually play in the development of a person. As the powerful final scene gives hope for reconciliation after the young protagonist has been pushed to frightful extremes, the film’s message is the importance of self-relationship and embracing one’s inner clashes, no matter what their outer reasons are.

The members of the jury were Viktoriia Gosudarska (Ukraine), Béata Kézdi (Hungary), and Christine Ris (Switzerland, President).


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