February 8, 2006
With more than 140,000 tickets sold, the 37th Hungarian Film Week confirmed local audiences’ desire for local cinema. Past debates about certain directors faded to the background so that audiences, professionals and the jury could concentrate on an important and large selection of films in competition, with 24 features and over 52 documentaries and scientific films.
Though the greats of Hungarian cinema have been present these past years, it was the young directors who took home the lion’s share of prizes in the feature film competition. Last year also saw the emergence of a new wave of commercial films targeted at large audiences.
In selecting Taxidermia by György Pálfi as Best Film, the jury acknowledged Pálfi’s innovative character, depth, creativity and the quality of his direction. The award consists of €300,000 that will go towards the director’s next film. Taxidermia also received awards for Best Set Design and Best Supporting Actress and Actor for Adél Stanczel and Csaba Czene, respectively.
The other big favourite, Szabolcs Hajdu, won Best Director for White Palms and also picked up the Audience Award, Best Producers (Iván Angelusz, Gábor Kovács, Ágnes Pataki and Péter Reich) and Best Editing (Péter Politzer). Lastly, critics and foreign journalists gave the Gene Moskowitz Prize ex-aequo to Taxidermia and White Palms, making them the week’s big winners.
Johanna, the film-opera by Kornél Mundruczó, screened in Un Certain Regard in 2005, was not overlooked: Orsi Tóth was named Best Actress (and also cited for My One and Onlies by Gyula Nemes), András Nagy received the Best Cinematography Award (shared with Tibor Máthé for Hunting for Englishmen) while Zsófia Tallér received an award for Best Score.
Ágnes Kocsis’s Fresh Air, one of the acclaimed films of the week, won Best First Film. Prize for Best Actor went to Sándor Csányi for the comedy Just Sex and Nothing Else, which also won Best Screenplay (for Krisztina Goda, Gábor Heller and Réka Divinyi).