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Planet of Snail (2011, South Korea) was awarded The VPRO IDFA Award for Best Feature-Lenght Documentary at the IDFA documentary film festival award ceremony last friday. Planet of Snail, directed by Seung-Jun Yi, tells the story of the every day life of the deaf and blind man Young-Chan and the love of his life, Soon-Ho. They have their own way of communicating by softly tapping each others fingers. Through Soon-Ho, Young-Chan gets to experience the beauty of things other people might not notice in their daily life. It will be exiting to see which festivals will be screening the film in the new year, but the IDFA award will sure make way for it.
Following is a list of other awarded films ad IDFA as published on their website:
Special Jury Award: 5 Broken Cameras (2011, Palestine/Israel/Netherlands/France), directed by Emad Burnat and Guy Davidi. The film is a personal portrait of a Palestinian village resisting encroaching Jewish settlements, as recorded by an inhabitant of the village over a number of years.
NTR IDFA Award for Best Mid-Length Documentary: Montenegro (2011, Argentina), directed by Jorge Gaggero. The film is about an old man living with his dogs on a quiet island in a river delta, in a seemingly harmonious symbiosis with a hermit who lives a little way away.
IDFA Award for First Appearance: The Vanishing Spring Light (2011, China/Canada), directed by Xun Yu. The film (first in series of four) documents the life of the residents of West Street in Dujiangyan City.
Dioraphte IDFA Award for Dutch Documentary: 900 Days, (2011) directed by Jessica Gorter. Film about survivors of the siege of Leningrad soberly separate propagandist myth from their horrific personal memories.
Publieke Omroep IDFA Audience Award: 5 Broken Cameras (2011, Palestine/Israel/Netherlands/France), directed by Emad Burnat and Guy Davidi.
IDFA Award for Student Documentary: The Betrayal (2011, UK/Norway), directed by Karen Winther. The film is about Karen, who as a teenager made a crucial mistake as part of the Norwegian squatting scene, and is hoping for forgiveness.
BlackBerry IDFA DOC U Award: The Last Days of Winter (2011, Iran) directed by Mehrdad Oskouei. The film is a portrait of seven Iranian boys in a youth detention centre, who talk candidly about their lives.
IDFA Award for Best Green Screen Documentary: Bitter Seeds (2011, USA/India), directed by Micha X. Peled. Filmmaker Peled investigates why every thirty minutes an Indian cotton farmer commits suicide, and follows one such farmer on his journey to the edge of the abyss. Peled also received the Oxfam Global Justice Award during the IDFA Talkshow on Thursday, November 24.
IDFA DocLab Award for Digital Storytelling: Insitu (2011, France) directed by Antoine Viviani. Insitu is a search for creative, artistic ways to intervene in the public space.
IDFA PLAY Award for Best Music Documentary: Last Days Here (2011, USA) directed by Don Argott and Demian Fenton won the award for best music documentary, awarded Saturday November 19th.
IDFA, held for the 24th time this year, is still growing in number of visitors every year. Numbers of visitors this year have not been made official, but according to IDFA´s website last friday, they were expecting 200.000 visitors this year, which is 20.000 more visitors than last year.
Following is the trailer from Planet of Snail, the still above is also from the film. Trailers of some of the awarded films can be found on IDFA´s website.