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Blood Brother (dir. Steve Hoover) won two awards at Sundance the U.S. Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award for U.S. documentary. The documentary tells the story of American guy Rocky who was traveling in India and when he meet a group of children with HIV, he decided to stay. A River Changes Course (dir. Kalyanee Mam) won the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize for Documentary. A River Changes Course is about three Cambodians and how deforestation, overfishing and debt is effecting their daily life.
The Sundance Award ceremony took place yesterday in Park City, Utah, and total of 13 awards were given to 12 documentaries. A list of all winners in categories (fiction, docs, shorts) can be found here. The following information on documentary winners is from Sundance website.
The U.S. Grand Jury Prize: Documentary and Audience Award: U.S. Documentary presented by Acura – Blood Brother / U.S.A. (Director: Steve Hoover) — Rocky went to India as a disillusioned tourist. When he met a group of children with HIV, he decided to stay. He never could have imagined the obstacles he would face, or the love he would find.
The World Cinema Gran Jury Prize for Documentary – A River Changes Course / Cambodia, U.S.A. (Director: Kalyanee Mam) — Three young Cambodians struggle to overcome the crushing effects of deforestation, overfishing, and overwhelming debt in this devastatingly beautiful story of a country reeling from the tragedies of war and rushing to keep pace with a rapidly expanding world.
The Audience Award for World Cinema Documentary – The Square (Al Midan) / Egypt, U.S.A. (Director: Jehane Noujaim) — What does it mean to risk your life for your ideals? How far will five revolutionaries go in defending their beliefs in the fight for their nation?
The Directing Award for U.S. Documentary – Cutie and the Boxer / U.S.A. (Director: Zachary Heinzerling) — This candid New York love story explores the chaotic 40-year marriage of famed boxing painter Ushio Shinohara and his wife, Noriko. Anxious to shed her role of assistant to her overbearing husband, Noriko seeks an identity of her own.
The Directing Award for World Cinema Documentary – The Machine Which Makes Everything Disappear / Georgia, Germany (Director: Tinatin Gurchiani) — A film director casting a 15-23-year-old protagonist visits villages and cities to meet people who answer her call. She follows those who prove to be interesting enough through various dramatic and funny situations.
The Editing Award for U.S. Documentary – Gideon’s Army / U.S.A. (Director: Dawn Porter) — Gideon’s Army follows three young, committed Public Defenders who are dedicated to working for the people society would rather forget. Long hours, low pay and staggering caseloads are so common that even the most committed often give up.
The Editing Award for World Cinema Documentary – The Summit / Ireland, United Kingdom (Director: Nick Ryan) — Twenty-four climbers converged at the last stop before summiting the most dangerous mountain on Earth. Forty-eight hours later, 11 had been killed or simply vanished. Had one, Ger McDonnell, stuck to the climbers’ code, he might still be alive.
The Cinematography Award for U.S. Documentary – Dirty Wars / U.S.A. (Director: Richard Rowley) — Investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill chases down the truth behind America’s covert wars.
The Cinematography Award for World Cinema Documentary – Who is Dayani Cristal? / United Kingdom (Director: Marc Silver) — An anonymous body in the Arizona desert sparks the beginning of a real-life human drama. The search for its identity leads us across a continent to seek out the people left behind and the meaning of a mysterious tattoo.
A U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Achievement in Filmmaking – Inequality for All / U.S.A. (Director: Jacob Kornbluth) — In this timely and entertaining documentary, noted economic-policy expert Robert Reich distills the topic of widening income inequality, and addresses the question of what effects this increasing gap has on our economy and our democracy.
A U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Achievement in Filmmaking – American Promise / U.S.A. (Directors: Joe Brewster, Michèle Stephenson) — This intimate documentary follows the 12-year journey of two African-American families pursuing the promise of opportunity through the education of their sons.
A World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Punk Spirit – Pussy Riot – A Punk Prayer / Russian Federation, United Kingdom (Directors: Mike Lerner, Maxim Pozdorovkin) — Three young women face seven years in a Russian prison for a satirical performance in a Moscow cathedral. But who is really on trial: the three young artists or the society they live in?