As the festival enters its second decade, HFFNY established the Havana Star Prize to recognize the work of outstanding filmmakers in the categories of Best Film, Best Director, and Best Screenplay.
Memories of Overdevelopment (Memorias del Desarrollo) follow-up to the seminal Cuban film, Memories of Underdevelopment (Tomas Gutierrez Alea). The film continues a fascinating journey to the interior subjectivity of Sergio, a bourgeois intellectual, 30 years later, this time dealing with old age, alienation and facing exile in New York. When accepting the Havana Star award, Cuban born, New York based director, Miguel Coyula expressed: “To receive the Havana Star Prize for best film means a lot for me, it is a testament to a jury that is willing to take the same risk I took as a filmmaker. This means even more today in a world plagued of by many Film Festivals that are more about political correctness, commercial appeal, and less about artistic integrity. We had a very intelligent reception from the audiences as well, which was equally amazing.”
The other awards went to:
· Best Director, Rafi Mercado for Miente / Lie (Puerto Rico), an edgy, visually stunning psychological thriller told through the eyes of a young artist. The actress Maine Anders (Jane in the movie) received the award.
· Best Screenplay to Ray Figueroa for La Bodega / The Warehouse (Guatemala), an urban tale of a young man and his best friend seeking to avenge his sister’s brutal assault.
· Special Jury Mention to Huacho (Chile), directed by Alejandro Fernandez. A beautifully conceived story about the struggles of a peasant family in Chile. In the jury’s own words: “Daring to cross genres, the movie was filmed like an observational documentary that displayed the harsh reality experienced by millions of rural Chileans.”
Click here to learn more about the competition and see the list of all films considered....