‘Give Me Liberty’, ‘Buoyancy’, ‘Lynn + Lucy’, ‘Wet Season’ and ‘Parasite’ lead winners at 4th IFFAM

Joe Lee
‘Give Me Liberty’ took home the top honour of Best Film in the International Category at the 4th IFFAM. — Picture from IFFAM

MACAO, Dec 12 — American film Give Me Liberty, grabbed the title of Best Film in the International Competition category at the 4th International Film Festival Awards Macao (IFFAM), beating out nine other films on Tuesday night.

Directed by Russian emigre writer-director Kirill Mikhanovsky, the film had made its debut earlier in the year in January at the Sundance Film Festival.

K-Pop darling Lim Yoona on the red carpet. — Picture from IFFAM

Chinese film Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains meanwhile won the top honour at the Macao Cultural Centre on Tuesday night  in the New Chinese Cinema category for  Best Film, beating out seven contenders in the weeklong event which saw a screening of 50 feature films and six short films.

Australia’s entry for next year’s Best International Feature Film at the Oscars in Buoyancy led the double winners in taking home two trophies, for Best Actor after a sterling performance by Cambodian-born Sarm Heng in his debut role on the screen, as well as the Macao Audience Choice Award.

Best Director in the New Chinese Cinema category went to Singaporean Anthony Chen. — Picture from IFFAM

Others included included Fyzal Boulifa for Best Director and Roxanne Scrimshaw for Best Actress for Lynn + Lucy in the International category while Singaporean Anthony Chen earned Best Director in the New Chinese Cinema category for Wet Season, which also earned the Cinephilia Critics award,in his second film following his 2013 debut Ilo Ilo, which won him a Camera D’Or at Cannes.

South Korean director Bong Joon Ho’s Parasite won the Asian Blockbuster Film prize in which he thanked organisers for the honour in a taped message saying, “I would assume this award is for Parasite as a blockbuster in the audience’s mind, not in box office gross.” 

Hong Kong actress and singer Carina Lau in a head-turner on the red carpet. — Picture from Instagram/carinalau1208

This year’s international jury was headed by Hong Kong director Peter Chan Ho-sun (The Warlords), with jury members including British actor Tom Cullen (Downton Abbey), American producer Ellen Eliasoph, Indonesian actress Dian Sastrowardoyo (Aruna and Her Palate) and filmmaker Midi Z (The Road to Mandalay) from Myanmar.   

The star-studded jury. — Picture from IFFAM

The Variety Asian Stars: Up Next Award meanwhile went to an impressive list of upcoming talents was secured by Asmara Abigail (Indonesia), Bea Alonzo (Philippines), BhumiPednekar (India), JennisOpraset and PraewaSuthampon (Thailand), Lien Binh Phat (Vietnam), Lim Yoona (South Korea) and  RyotaKatayose (Japan). 

A star-studded red carpet kicked off the evening with the likes of festival ambassadors Wang Xiaoshuai and Talent Ambassadors Juliette Binoche and Carina Lau as well as K-Pop darling Lim Yoona and Indonesian actress Dian Sastrowardoyo turning heads.

Aaron Kwon and the cast of ‘I’m Livin’ It’ on the red carpet. — Picture from IFFAM

4th IFFAM winners list

International Competition

Best Film: Give Me Liberty

Best Director: Fyzal Boulifa (Lynn + Lucy)

Best Actress: Roxanne Scrimshaw (Lynn + Lucy)

Best Actor: Sarm Heng (Buoyancy

Best Screenplay: Hamish Bennett (Bellbird)

Macao Audience Choice Award: Buoyancy


New Chinese Cinema

Best Film: Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains

Best Director: Anthony Chen (Wet Season)

Best Actress: Zhou Dongyu (Better Days)

Best Actor: Xiaoliang Wu (Wisdom Tooth)

Best Screenplay: Johnna Ma (To Live to Sing)

Cinephilia Critics’ Award : Wet Season

Cinephilia Critics’ Award (Best Macau Film): Years of Macao


Special awards

NETPAC Award: Live to Sing

Asian Blockbuster Film 2019: Parasite

Variety Asian Star: Lim Yoon A (Korea), Bea Alonzo (the Philippines), Jennis Oprasert (Thailand), Praewa Suthamphon (Thailand), Bhumi Pednekar (India), Lien Binh Phat (Vietnam), Ryota Katayose (Japan) and Asmara Abigail (Indonesia). 

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