Cartagena Film Fest: 'Ixcanul' Comes Up Big Again

Courtesy of Berlin International Film Festival
'Ixcanul'

Guatemalan filmmaker Jayro Bustamante is on a winning streak, with recent victories at Berlin and Guadalajara.

Ixcanul (Ixcanul Volcano), the feature debut of Guatemalan writer-director Jayro Bustamante, has triumphed once again.

Winner of Berlin's Silver Bear Alfred Bauer Prize in February, Ixcanul Volcano depicts the true-life story of an indigenous woman's struggles in a poor Mayan village, underscored with a shocking ending. The cast consists mostly of nonactors. The docu-fiction hybrid won best picture at the Guadalajara film fest last week.

The Cartagena jury awarded best director to Peruvian filmmaker Hector Galvez for NN, a film that explores a difficult fight to remember Peru's dark past. NN bowed at the Rome film fest.

Brazil's Branco Sai, Preto Fica (White Out, Black In), a story about a search for identity and belonging, won the special jury prize and grabbed the FIPESCI critics award as well.

Best Colombian picture went to Carlos Tribino's feature debut El Secreto del Rio (The Silence of the River), a drama following two parallel stories connected by a river.

Maite Alberdi’s La Once (Tea Time), which celebrates Chile’s tea time ritual, picked up best documentary.

For Cartagena's first-ever PuertoLab postproduction awards, prizes went to Colombian filmmaker Emilce Quevedo Diez's documentary Nosotras and road movie Camino a la Paz, from Argentine director Francisco Varone.

Special guests this year at Cartagena included Darren Aronofsky, Guardians of the Galaxy writer-director James Gunn, Annabelle producer Peter Safran, The Homesman producer Michael Fitzgerald, South Korean filmmaker Kim Ki-duk, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and writer-director Rodrigo Garcia, son of Nobel Prize-winning author Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

Latin America's longest-running festival closed its 55th edition Tuesday night with a screening of Garcia's Last Days in the Desert, which had its world premiere at Sundance earlier this year.

A list of the winners can be found below:

BEST PICTURE, OFFICIAL COMPETITION

Ixcanul

BEST DIRECTOR, OFFICIAL COMPETITION

Hector Galvez (NN)

SPECIAL JURY PRIZE

Branco Sai, Preto Fica

BEST PICTURE, COLOMBIAN COMPETITION

El Secreto del Rio

BEST DIRECTOR, COLOMBIAN COMPETITION

Roberto Flores (Ruido Rosa)

FIPRESCI PRIZE

Branco Sai, Preto Fica

AUDIENCE AWARD, COLOMBIAN PICTURE

Carta a una Sombra

BEST DOCUMENTARY

La Once

GEMS

Hermosa Juventud

BEST SHORT

Se Venden Conejos

NEW CREATORS: SHORT FILM

En Busca de Aire

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