54th Thessaloniki International Film Festival

Greece, November 1 - November 10 2013

The jury

Magda Mihailescu (Romania), Dubravka Lakic (Serbia), Boyd van Hoeij (Luxembourg), Bojidar Manov (Bulgaria)

Awarded films

The 54th edition of the Thessaloniki International Film Festival took place from the 1st to the 10th of November 2013 in Greece. Despite the adversity of the nation’s economic and social conditions, the festival succeeded in preserving its structures, strategies, and, most importantly, its ambition to discover, defend, and support independent, emerging cinema (first and second films) from all over the world — and to do all this with a mandate to give that cinema better visibility. In other words, the festival defends and sustains the future trends and practices of this independent cinema so that it may unfold in a fruitful manner. As Festival director, Dimitri Eipides, said, “Here there are the fresh cinematic voices from around the world. They differ enormously. Each filmmaker charts his own journey, speaks his own daring voice and reflects the world with her own, penetrating, thoughtful vision”. Obviously, the audience did agree, because despite the unbelievably sunny days, the faithful spectators flocked to the screenings. The International Competition included 14 productions coming from 11 countries as varied as Venezuela, Cuba, Chile, Egypt, Mexico, France, Sweden and Greece– 7 titles. Most of them are a spitting image of our world, with its contradictions, injustice, and lack of horizons. The struggle for life and for human dignity was the main topic, touching, full of energy, especially in the cinema from Latin America. The FIPRESCI prize for the International Competition went, with a majority of votes, to Bad Hair (Pelo Malo), by Mariana Rondon from Venezuela. This film tells a sensitive story about the difficulty of having a dream at any age in a social context riddled with dogmas and intolerance. As for the Greek Competition, the FIPRESCI jurors have unanimously chosen The Eternal Return of Antonis Paraskevas (I eonia epistrofi tou Antoni  Paraskeva), an impressive journey into the moral consequences of the nation’s crisis, and a  remarkable debut for Elina Psykou. (Magda Mihailescu)

Thessaloniki International Film Festival: www.filmfestival.gr