Saturday, February 20, 2010

'Bal' wins top honors at Berlinale

Turkish director Semih Kaplanoglu's film 'Bal' (Honey) won the Berlin Film Festival's prestigious Golden Bear prize for 2010. "Honey," The heart-warming drama from Turkish director Semih Kaplanoglu,
"Honey," is the final film in Kaplanoglu's autobiographical trilogy - the others are "Egg" (2007) and "Milk" (2008) - follows a young boy in rural Turkey whose father collects wild honey. It was one of the few life-affirming films in this year's Berlinale line-up and was an underdog favorite for the top prize. The film tells the story of a young boy in an isolated mountain area who ventures into the forest in search of his father.

The Berlinale Jury, headed by director Werner Herzog, gave its Silver Bear Jury Prize to a very different film: Florin Serban's pull-no-punches look at juvenile delinquents in Romania, "If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle." "Whistle" also nabbed the Alfred Bauer award, named after the Berlinale's founder.

Japanese actress Shinobu Terajima won best actress for her role in 'Caterpillar,' while Grigori Dobrygin and Sergei Puskepalis won best actor for Russian film 'How I Ended This Summer,' which also received the award for outstanding artistic contribution.

Bal/Honey also won the Ecumenical Jury Prize:
Competition: “Bal” (Honey) directed by Semih Kaplanoglu
Panorama: “Kawasakiho ruze” (Kawasaki’s Rose) directed by Jan Hrebejk
Forum: “Aisheen [Still Alive in Gaza]” directed by Nicolas Wadimoff

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