Berlin: Israeli Musical Drama 'Junction 48' Wins Audience Award

Junction 48 still 1 - Samar Qupty and Tamer Nafar - H 2016
Courtesy of Amnon Zalait

Palestinians use hip-hop to fight back against Israeli oppression in Udi Aloni's upbeat feature.

Udi Aloni's Israeli musical drama Junction 48 won the 18th Panorama Audience Award, the top prize of the Berlin International Film Festival voted on by ordinary moviegoers, it was announced Saturday.

The feature, Aloni's sixth film to screen in Berlin, is a feel-good drama set against the backdrop of the Israeli-Palestine conflict. In it, young Palestinians use hip-hop as a medium of protest against the Israeli occupation.

Second place went to Fukushima, mon Amour from veteran German director Doris Dorrie, while Oliver Schmitz's South African-set tale Shepherds and Butchers took third.

Another Israeli film, Who's Gonna Love Me Now?, about a gay, HIV-positive Orthodox man caught between his tradition and the new family he has found in London, took the audience prize in the Panorama Dokumente section. Tomer and Barak Heymann directed the pic.

Second place in the documentary category went to Strike a Pose, a surprisingly touching Dutch film that follows the fate of six dancers who toured with Madonna on her 1990 Blond Ambition tour. Third place went to Korean documentary Weekends from director Lee Dong-ha.