Karlovy Vary: Hungarian Feature 'It's Not the Time of My Life' Wins Top Prize

Its Not the Time of My Life Still - Publicity - H 2016
Courtesy of KVIFF

Its Not the Time of My Life Still - Publicity - H 2016

Director Szabolcs Hajdu, who appeared in his own film, also won best actor honors.

Hungarian director Szabolcs Hajdu took home the Grand Prix Crystal Globe and a $25,000 cash award for his film It's Not the Time of My Life at Saturday's conclusion of the 51st edition of the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival.

The drama, an intimate study of two families forced to share an unusual apartment, impressed the jury with its taut performances and inventive production.

The director, who also stars in the movie, which draws faithfully from the work of John Cassavetes and Ingmar Bergman, also picked up a best actor award for his role.

A special jury prize of $15,000 was awarded to the second feature from rising Russian talent Ivan Tverdovsky, Zoology, an unusual story of a disillusioned middle-aged woman who grows a tail and embarks upon a thrilling new romance before reality catches up with her.

Best director honors went to Slovenia's Damjan Kozole for Nightlife, which focuses on the lives of a wealthy couple that are irrevocably changed by an accident.

Zuzana Maurery was named best actress for her role in The Teacher by Czech helmer Jan Hrebejk. There also were special jury mentions for Romanian director Catalin Mitulescu for By the Rails  and for veteran Czech filmmaker Jan Nemec for his autobiographical feature The Wolf From Royal Vineyard Street.

In the festival's East of the West competition section, which focuses on films from central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, Georgian director Rusudan Glurildze won the main $15,000 prize for her haunting debut House of Others, which chronicles the fate of a family that moves into a deserted house after a bitter civil war.

Estonia's Triin Ruumet received a special jury prize of $10,000 for The Days That Confused, her debut about post-Soviet life in her country in the 1990s.

Best documentary honors went to Israeli director Alma Har'el for LoveTrue, a study of the nature of human love. There also was a special jury mention for Ama-san, Claudia Varejao's study of Japanese pearl divers.

The audience award at Karlovy Vary, where thousands of young people ensure screenings are always packed, went to Captain Fantastic, directed by Matt Ross and starring Viggo Mortensen.

The 52nd edition of the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, hosted in the historic spa town west of Prague, is set to take place June 30-July 8, 2017.