Montclair Film Festival: 'Lady Macbeth,' 'Strong Island' Among Award Winners

Lady Macbeth - Still 1 - H 2017
Courtesy of Sundance

Lady Macbeth - Still 1 - H 2017

'The Reagan Show,' 'Casting Jon Benet' and 'Elian' also took home prizes.

The 2017 Montclair Film Festival came to an end over the weekend, revealing the winners in its four competitions. Five efforts competed in each category: fiction, documentary, future/now and New Jersey films.

The fiction feature prize went to William Oldroyd's Lady Macbeth, with Florence Pugh receiving a special jury prize for her performance.

The documentary feature competition's Bruce Sinofsky Award was given to Yance Ford's Strong Island, with a special jury prize for direction given to Matthew Heineman for City of Ghosts.

Eliza Hittman's Beach Rats won the future/now prize, honoring emerging low-budget American independent filmmaking. The New Jersey films award went to Lara Stolman's Swim Team, with a special jury prize, the American Truth Seeker Award, given to ACORN & The Firestorm's Reuben Atlas and Samuel D. Pollard.

The Reagan Show, directed by Sierra Pettengill and Pacho Velez, won the third annual David Carr Award for Truth in Nonfiction Filmmaking, which honors a filmmaker who uses journalistic techniques to explore contemporary subjects.

Audience awards were won by the following films: Maudie (fiction), Dolores (documentary), Clash (world cinema) and Edith+Eddie (short films).

A junior jury of students from area high schools awarded its top prize to the documentary Elian, with Casting JonBenet receiving a special jury prize for innovative filmmaking.

“This year’s films represent a vast range of ideas, artistic approaches, and cinematic points of view,” Montclair Film executive director Tom Hall said in a statement. “We are honored to be able to share these films with our audiences, and congratulate all of our filmmakers on their outstanding work.”

The full list of the 2017 Montclair Film Festival award winners follows.

Fiction Feature Competition Winner
Lady Macbeth
Directed by William Oldroyd

Fiction Feature Competition
Special Jury Prize for Extraordinary Performance
Florence Pugh for Lady Macbeth

Bruce Sinofsky Prize for Documentary Feature Competition Winner
Strong Island
Directed by Yance Ford
Documentary Feature Competition
Special Jury Prize for Direction
Matthew Heinemann, City of Ghosts

Future/Now Winner
Beach Rats
Directed by Eliza Hittman
New Jersey Films Competition Winner
Swim Team
Directed by Lara Stolman
New Jersey Films Competition
Special Jury Prize
American Truth Seeker Award
ACORN & The Firestorm
Directed by Reuben Atlas and Samuel D. Pollard

Audience Award for Fiction
Directed by Aisling Walsh

Audience Award for Documentary
Directed by Peter Bratt

Audience Award for World Cinema
Directed by Mohamed Diab

Audience Award for Short Film
Directed by Laura Checkoway

Junior Jury Award
Directed by Tim Golden & Ross McDonnell

Junior Jury Special Jury Prize for Innovative Filmmaking
Casting JonBenet
Directed by Kitty Green