A week of films and fetes finished last night at the Closing Gala and Awards Ceremony of the 13th Annual Reel Asian Film Festival.
A week of films and fetes finished last night at the Closing Gala and Awards Ceremony of the 13th Annual Reel Asian Film Festival. The Royal Theatre was packed to the max with people, gratitude and congratulations to the many individuals and sponsors who helped pull off the spectacular festival.
So You Think You Can Pitch? Emerging: Sonia Hong, Olga Barsky and Claire Lowery for A DRAGGED OUT AFFAIR
So You Think You Can Pitch? Professional: Jonathan Ng for REQUIEM FOR ROMANCE
TSV Visionary Video Award: Paramita Nath for FOUND
Centennial College @ Wallace Studios Most Innovative Film Production Award: Randall Okita for FISH IN BARREL
LIFT and Fuji Best Film Award: Mio Adilman for UNLOCKED
Animasian Award: Lesley Loksi Chan and Serena Lee for LIVE LONG AND PROSPER
NFB Best Canadian Film or Video Award: Richard Fung, John Greyson and Ali Kazimi, for REX VS SINGH
Kim Orr Barristers P.C. Best Narrative Feature Film or Video Award: Uruphong Raksasad for AGRARIAN UTOPIA (with an honourable mention to FISH STORY)
Following the awards was the final film presentation, BREATHLESS. A gut wrenching story about a man caught smack in the middle of the cycle of violence and abuse, this film was at times hard to watch yet also hard to look away. Brutal violence and profuse profanity are heavy throughout, but that extreme was juxtaposed with some sweet and tender moments. First time feature director Yang Ik-June (who also wrote and starred in the film), did a superb job in visually beating visceral reactions from the audience, making them laugh out loud, and ultimately shed a tear or two. After the screening, Yang Ik-June came on stage for a Q & A where he commented on the domestic violence that occurs in Korea. He conveyed the sentiment that though he doesn’t know if humans can change, but he hopes they can. Considering the audible reaction from the audience during the uber violent beatings, it’s clearly a sentiment shared by all.
Written by Emer Schlosser
Photos by Nancy Kim