Generation Kplus cinema jury

“Ottaal” wins the Crystal Bear at Berlin Festival

Cinema

News - India & You

February 22, 2016

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“Ottaal”, a journey in the beauty of South India

“Ottaal”, a journey in the beauty of South India

At the Berlin Film Festival, the members of the Children’s Jury of the Generation Kplus section gave the Crystal Bear for Best film to Malayalam movie “Ottaal” (The Trap), directed by Indian filmmaker Jayaraj Rajasekharan Nair.

The film’s screenplay is an adaptation of the short story “Vanka”, written by Russian master Anton Chekhov. Transposed in the Indian context of Kerala (South), it tells the story of a young boy who reveres his grand-father and fights to escape his condition of a child factory worker, hence the title.

The film is helmed by experienced Malayalam moviemaker Jayaraj Rajasekharan Nair, also known as Jayaraj, who directed more than 30 films in over two decades. He was noticed, among other features, for “Desadanam” (Journey to wisdom, 1997) and “Loud speaker” (2009). The cast of “Ottaal” includes Ashanth K. Sha, Kumarakom Vasavan, Shine Tom Chacko and Sabitha Jayaraj.

“This exceptional movie (Ottaal) touched us all with its irresistible images of nature, laid-back music and amazingly gifted actors. The unique way of filming certain details blew us away. We think it’s important that such a sad and serious topic be tackled in a movie, though the film also managed to capture the humour and joy of life”, explained the young jury members of this Kplus section dedicated to talents from all over the world.

It is the third consecutive year that Indian movies are awarded in the Generation section at large in Berlin, after “Killa” in 2015 and “Dhanak” in 2014.

“Jamais contente” (Miss Impossible), by French director Emilie Deleuze got a “Special mention” from this jury. The Crystal Bear for the Best Short Film was awarded to “El inicio de Fabrizio”(Fabrizio’s Initiation), by Mariano Biasin, from Argentina. And “Ninnoc” by Niki Padidar, from Netherlands, got a “Special mention” in the Short Film category.

The 2016 edition of the Berlin Film Festival, February 11-21, was an opportunity for Indian films such as “Sairat” (Wild) by Nagraj Manjule, to get a world exposure in a festival unique by its attendance and conviviality. The adjacent film market was another venue to screen the Indian way and new talents.

The Berlin Film Festival, the famous Berlinale in Germany, is with Cannes and Venice, one of the leading world film fests. It celebrates mainstream cinema and extravaganza but also allows hundreds of thousands of viewers to discover new international talents and author films. This year, it boasted a prestigious official selection, with stars such as George Clooney in “Hail, Caesar!”, from the Coen Brothers, and a shiny jury, led by the Lady of American cinema, actress Meryl Streep.

The Golden Bear was awarded this year to “Fire at Sea”, an Italian documentary directed by Gianfranco Rosi and depicting the refugee crisis on the Italian island of Lampedusa.

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