Lapointe's 'La Vie secrete' tops at Whistler


TORONTO -- Quebec director Stephane Lapointe's "La Vie secrete des gens heureux," (The Secret Life of Happy People) on Sunday picked up the top prize at the 6th annual Whistler Film Festival.

Lapointe's French-language "perfect family" drama won the trophy for best new Canadian feature film as part of the juried Borsos Competition, which was overseen by jury chairman Norman Jewison ("Moonstruck").

Other award winners at Whistler included the best documentary prize going to U.S. director Alexandra Lipsitz for "Air Guitar Nation," the 2005 SXSW award winner, while the best mountain culture film was "Let It Ride!," a world premiere from Canadian director Jacques Russo.

In the performance categories, the Borsos Competition jury gave the best actor prize to Andrew W. Walker for his portrayal of a neo-Nazi skinhead in the British Columbia film "Steel Toes," directed by David Gow and Mark Adam, while Catherine de Lean earned the best actress award for her turn in Lapointe's "La vie secrete des gens hereux."

The Whistler Film Festival wrapped Sunday with a screening of Marc Evans' "Snow Cake."