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VIFF 2010, Day 16: Adios, Sayonara, Auf Wiedersehen, Adieu

Waste Land

Lucy Walker's Waste Land — depicting the rich subculture of Rio de Janeiro's scavengers who swarm the world's largest landfill to extract recyclable materials for re-sale and economic sustenance — won the Rogers People's Choice Award, presented at the closing Gala ceremony of the 29th annual Vancouver International Film Festival on Friday, October 15th.

Meanwhile, Denis Villeneuve's Canadian Foreign Language Oscar nominee, Incendies, won the Best Canadian Film, while most promising director of a Canadian Short Film, went to Halima Ouardiri, also of Québec, for her short Mokhtar, the moving 15-minute short about a young Moroccan goatherder.

The remaining award winners at the Closing Gala included ...

  • Kinshasa Symphony: Claus Wischmann and Martin Baer's documentary about a Congo orchestra who play European classical music (often on homemade instruments) emerged as Most Popular Nonfiction Film.

  • Force of Nature: The David Suzuki Movie: Sturla Gunnarsson's doc about Vancouver-based, world-renowned environmentalist, Dr. David Suzuki, won VIFF's Environmental Film Audience Award.

  • Leave Them Laughing: Yves Ma, from the National Film Board, presented the NFB Most Popular Canadian Documentary Award to Leave Them Laughing, about performer and terminal ALS patient Carla Zilbersmith. The film was directed by John Zaritsky, winner of more than 30 awards for his past documentary features.

  • Two Indians Talking: BC-based director Sara McIntyre's dramedy was named the Most Popular Canadian Film. She accepted the award with her producer and actor Carmen Moore.

  • Deborah Kara Unger (Crash), one of the Canadian Images jury members — along with Emily Carr University film instructor/director Sandy Wilson (My American Cousin), and Andrea Henning, executive director of B.C. Arts and Culture — made special mention of Denis Côté's Curling.

    "We would like to honour a film that not only distinguished itself for its confidence of vision, but also its philosophical bravery, which indeed has provoked extreme responses, with its brittle Brechtian architecture, and its subtle, unapologetic power, akin to the art of Rothko, in its realization of life beneath the surface of winter."

Just as an aside, and incidentally, Côté was a juror for the Dragons & Tigers For Young Cinema award that, mid-Festival, presented $10,000 to Hirohara Satoru for his début film, Good Morning to the World!

Dave Hewitt, from the VIFF Board of Directors, provided a guesstimate as to 2010 VIFF attendance, based on estimates of attendance in 2009. Mr. Hewitt suggested that approximately 10,000 people per day attended the 29th annual edition of the Vancouver International Film Festival, totaling approximately 140,000 to 150,000 attendees, and tickets sold.

Final figures on attendance will be provided at a later date, as will a list of the titles of the narrative features that found most favour with patrons at VIFF 2010. In our next posting, VanRamblings will provide a list of our favourites, a compendium from Mr. Know-It-All and J.B. 'Showbiz' Shayne.

Posted by Raymond Tomlin at October 16, 2010 7:10 PM in VIFF 2010


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