Locarno: Hong Sang-soo Wins Top Prize

Right Now Still – H 2015
Courtesy of Festival del Film Locarno

Right Now Still – H 2015

The Korean director takes the Golden Leopard for ‘Right Now, Wrong Then.’

Switzerland’s Locarno Film Fest wrapped on Saturday with Korean director Hong Sang-soo taking home the Golden Leopard for his film Right Now, Wrong Then. The film’s star Jung Jae-Young also took the prize for best actor.

Right Now, Wrong Then is a romantic comedy that tells the same story twice, in which two characters meet up over the course of the same day.

The Korean auteur (Night and DayIn Another Country) wowed the international jury, which included director Jerry Schatzberg, German actor Udo Kier, Israel director Nadav Lapid, Mexican festival director Daniela Michel and Korean actress Moon So-ri.

Israel director Avishai Sivan took the special jury prize for Tikkun. When an ultra-Orthodox religious scholar in Jerusalem comes back to life after a harrowing accident, his whole being is shaken. Shai Goldman also won best cinematography for the film.

Best director went to Andrzej Zulawski for Cosmos. The noir thriller spooked audiences with its story of two friends who stumble on a series of frightening signs after heading to a country retreat. It's Zulawki's first film in 15 years. 

The best actress prize was split between the four leads of Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s Happy Hour: Sachie Tanaka, Hazuki Kikuchi, Maiko Mihara and Rira Kawamura. The film details four friends in their thirties who must question if they have the lives they really wanted after one of them goes missing following a bad divorce. It also received a mention for best script for Hamaguchi.

Among the Filmmakers of the Present competition, India’s Raam Reddy won the Golden Leopard for Thithi. He also won the prize for best first feature. Mauro Herce won the special jury prize for Dead Slow Ahead. And the prize for best emerging director went to China’s Gan Bi for Kaili Blues.

Among the Cinema of Tomorrow competition, Georgia’s Davit Pirtskhalava won the Golden Leopard for best short film for Mama.

Brazilian director Sergio Machado's The Violin Teacher closes the festival on Saturday night.