11st Ankara Flying Broom International Women's Film Festival

Turkey, May 8 - May 15 2008

The jury

Angelika Kettelhack (Germany), France Hatron (France), Burcu Aykar (Turkey)

Awarded films

The Flying Broom International Women’s Film Festival celebrated its 11th edition showing 89 films (33 long feature films, 36 short films and 20 documentaries) by 88 women directors from 27 countries in different sections.

To explain her motivations for this festival, Halime Güner, who created the festival in 1998, willingly quotes Simone de Beauvoir: “As long as women do not create their own dreams, they will be forced to live the dreams of men.” A way to say that the festival’s main objective is to provide women from all around the world with a chance to share their work and thereby encourage them to make more films reflecting their own point of view.

Competing for the FIPRESCI Price, in the section “Each Has a Different Color”, were twelve feature films. The FIPRESCI jury is, until now, the only jury in the festival. Three films by Chantal Akerman were selected for the retrospective dedicated to her, somewhat humorously titled “The Wicked Witch of Cinema”. The section “A Room of One’s Own” was concerned with the image and representation of women in literature. “My Own” contained three American independent films, one of which was Waitress, shown in memory of director Adrienne Shelley who was murdered during the shooting. The section “Peace, But When?” contained seven films and tried in various ways to answer this fundamental question. Also, five long feature films were in the section “Men under the Gaze”.

Our jury awarded the prize to Buddha Collapsed out of Shame (Buda as sharm foru rikht), a film from Iran. Directed by Hana Makhmalbaf, the film tells the story of six-year-old Baktay living in Bamyan (Afghanistan) who wants to go to a girl’s school. As she’s a poor child, she has to find money to buy a notebook and a pen and, as she’s a girl, boys that are playing war games prevent her from attending school. This film was the critics’ choice because of its two strong messages: the first concerns the stupidities of war that makes children grow up in a violent climate because of the adults that teach them the worst. Second, it depicts the condition of women in Afghanistan (courage, strength and patience). Even young girls have to fight for their freedom. (France Hatron)