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In yet another example of courage under fire from the citizens of Ukraine, the country’s film critics have managed to hold the country’s first post-war awards ceremony. The Ukrainian National Film Critics association handed out its Kinokolo Awards Thursday night, broadcasting the ceremony from a bunker studio in Kyiv. The event was carried on national public TV channel Suspilne Kultura.
Pamfir from director Dmytro Sukholytkyi-Sobchuk was the night’s big winner, taking home best film, best director and best screenwriter honors, as well the discovery of the year prize for the best full-length debut. Pamfir star Oleksandr Yatsentyuk also took best actor for his performance in the film as a man who returns to Ukraine from abroad and gets drawn into his criminal past. Pamfir premiered in Cannes in Directors’ Fortnight.
Maryna Er Gorbach’s war drama Klondike, which debuted at Sundance this year, and is Ukraine’s official entry for the 2023 Oscars, won Kinokolo honors for Oksana Cherkashyna as best actress.
The best documentary prize went to Oleksii Radynskyi’s Infinity: According to Florian and Maryna Stepanska’s Wir, Europa won best animated film honor.
Lithuanian director Mantas Kvedaravicius received a special, posthumous honor at the ceremony. Kvedaravicius was taken hostage and killed by Russian soldiers in late March during the shooting of his film Mariupolis 2. Material he shot was smuggled out of the country in order to finish the movie, which screened in Cannes.
Despite the ongoing war and the technical challenge of hosting the ceremony from a bunker, the 2022 Kinokolo awards went off without a hitch. They even kept to their traditional schedule, holding the event on the first day of Kyiv Critics’ Week, which runs through Oct. 26.
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Red Sea Film Festival