Belgium Critics Vote on the Best of 2023

On Thursday February 8, 2024, members of the Belgian Film Press Union (UPCB-UBFP) gathered in Brussels at the restaurant De Ultieme Hallucinatie for the association’s annual General Assembly, during which the traditional Grand Prix and Humanum Prize are awarded. Some forty members, journalists and film critics from Dutch- and French-speaking Belgium, were present – the association has a total of 137 members for 2024.

The Grand Prix, awarded to the best film of the past year, went to “Anatomy of a fall” by Justine Triet.
“An exciting film from start to finish, capable of perfect balance, fundamentally mainstream and subtly feminist, that delves into the themes of the couple, filial relationships, sexuality, disability and ambition”, said the association.

After winning the Palme d’Or at the last Cannes Film Festival, the film was released in Belgian cinemas on August 30, 2023 by Paradiso. The other 4 finalists were: Steven Spielberg’s “The Fabelmans”, Charlotte Wells’ “Aftersun”, Christopher Nolan’s “Oppenheimer” and Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon”.

The Humanum Prize, redefined by the association this year and aimed at rewarding a film “serving as a plea to live in harmony among different human beings and/or communities” went to Maryam Touzani’s “Blue Caftan” “for the delicacy with which the filmmaker treats her subject. A man loves men, his wife accepts him, and their love is so strong that it touches us deeply”. The film was released in Belgian cinemas on March 29, 2023 by Cinéart. The other finalists were Alain Ughetto’s “Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens” and Thomas Cailley’s “Le Règne Animal”.

These two films respectively succeed “Las Bestias (As Bestas)” by Rodrigo Sorogoyen (Grand Prix 2022), “L’Empire du silence” by Thierry Michel and “Flee” by Jonas P. Rasmussen (Prix Humanum 2022 ex aequo).

Founded in 1925, the Belgian Film Press Union (UPCB-UBFP) brings together critics and journalists from all over the country with a professional connection to film. Among other things, it is the initiator of the Prix de la Critique, which it co-presents with the UCC (Union de la Critique Cinéma) at some ten festivals in Belgium, and of the Grand Prix awarded at the beginning of the year by its members to the best film of the past year. The association is the national representative of FIPRESCI.