The 11th Angel Film Awards aka Monaco International Film Festival – announced their winners last Saturday December 7th at the star studded gala reception and closing awards night extravaganza. A standing ovation for “FOR THE LOVE OF CHILDREN” directed by the courageous and passionate Canadian director Ashid Bahl who won the coveted ANGEL TROPHY AWARD for the film that best expressed the spirit of the festival. Bahl also picked up Best Feature Documentary, which was announced by the AFA Jury President the universally praised and two-time Oscar nominated, Palme d’Or winning film director Roland Joffé.
The big winner in the Best Feature Film section this year – an absolute tour de force picking up eight awards, was the epic mystery drama ‘MOTHER’S MILK’ (UK) directed by the BAFTA Award Winning Gerald Fox. Four awards went to the Japanese Drama, ‘MY WAY OF LIFE’ (Japan), directed by Hideki Wada. In the feature documentary category ‘MEDITATION-CREATIVITY-PEACE’ (USA), directed by David Lynch picked up the Angel Peace Award as well as Best Director and two others (full awards list online). Another multiple winner in the AFA Short Film category was for the epic historical drama, ‘SHOES’ (Belarus/Russia/USA), directed by the multi-talented Costa Fam who picked up a staggering six awards. A powerfully moving story, following a Jewish victim during the Holocaust, in search of a pair of red shoes she left behind.
Started eleven years ago by Rosana Golden and Dean Bentley where the films in competition promote peace and love – a refreshing antidote to the usual violent film lobby. It is the only international film festival in the world that celebrates nonviolent films and screenplays focussing on humanity, peace, and family drama.
AFA Festival Director, Producer Rosana Golden and Dean Bentley selected this year’s seventeen films and eleven screenplays from some nine hundred and ninety three entries. The Screenplay awards were presented by the award winning Russian producer, writer and poet Luba Balagova and British producer Daniella Gonella of DG Productions.
An impressive jury was led this year by the universally praised Roland Joffé, two-time Oscar nominated, Palme d’Or winning film director; BBC World News presenter Babita Sharma; the award winning Russian film producer, writer and poet Luba Balagova; the Italian actress Antonella Savucci and British actress and top model/fashion designer Claire Farwell.
The 2013 Lifetime Achievement Awards were presented to David Lynch in recognition of his momentous contribution and far-reaching involvement in transcendental meditation and to Roland Joffé for his contribution to film and extensive philanthropic work around the world.
The festival’s Goodwill Ambassadors were the formidable Lamia Khashoggi who is the co-founder of ‘The Children for Peace’ (ONLUS) and is named in UNESCO’S "A Network of Remarkable Woman" and Debra Mace, President and co-founder of “The Children for Peace”. Lamia was also this year’s Dame of Honour.
2013 Winning Films and film logline/short synopsis:
The coveted ANGEL TROPHY AWARD and Best Feature Documentary was awarded to ‘FOR THE LOVE OF CHILDREN’ (Canada) directed by the courageous and passionate director Ashid Bahl. A heart rending, relentless and selfless mission by Bahl to help less fortunate children around the world, showing that even one person can make a big difference.
David Lynch’s Feature Documentary ‘MEDITATION-CREATIVITY-PEACE’ (USA) picked up the Angel Peace Award as well as Best Director, Best Cinematography and Best Film Editing. This fascinating documentary follows David through Europe, the Middle East and Latin America, spreading the word about transcendental meditation,
The big winner in the Feature Film section this year – an absolute tour de force, was the epic mystery drama ‘MOTHER’S MILK’ (UK) directed by the BAFTA Award Winning Gerald Fox. This was based on the novel by Edward St. Aubyn, depicting a family’s breakdown after an ailing grandmother decides to leave her inheritance to an Irish conman instead of her own family. This film not only won the Best Feature Film but Best Cinematography (Steve Haskett), Best Director (Gerald Fox); Best Producer (Jacqueline Fox); Best Male Supporting Actor (Thomas Underhill), Best Female Supporting Actor (Annabel Mullion), Best Film Editing (John Street) and Special Mention Angel Film Award went to the Late Margaret Tyzack.
Other notable awards went to the Japanese Drama, ‘MY WAY OF LIFE’ (Japan), directed by Hideki Wada. This film gave us a heart-rending insight into senile dementia, picking up awards for Best Male Actor (Isao Hashizume), Best Female Actor (Kumiko Akiyoshi)and Best Ensemble Cast as well as the Humanitarian Angel Film Award. Feature film 'FEAR OF WATER’ (UK) exploring the friendship of two girl’s whose lives are worlds apart – Best Newcomer (Lily Loveless) and Best Original Music (Benson Taylor); The Independent Spirit award went to 'THE SEARCH FOR SIMON’ (UK), a black comedy directed by Martin Gooch and starring Monty Python actress Carol Cleveland who attended the festival, (for more cast details please go online).
Another multiple award winner in the Short Film category, picking up six awards, was the epic historical drama, ‘SHOES’ (Belarus/Russia/USA), directed by Costa Fam. A powerfully moving story, following a Jewish victim during the Holocaust, in search of a pair of red shoes she left behind. This film picked up Best Cinematography, Best Director, Best Short Film, Best Producer (Costa Fam; Yuri Igrusha; Igor Lopatonok), Best Original Music (Igor Aomaninko) and the Angel Peace Award.
Other notable Short Film Awards went to: ‘THEFT UNEXPECTED’(UK) – a comedy involving two men and a misunderstanding over a packet of biscuits in a café winning Best Male Actor (Maurice Byrne) and Best Supporting Male Actor (Lucien Morgan); 'A LIFE LIKE MINE' (UK) - a perfect family life turned upside down when someone from the past reappears, which received the Best Ensemble Cast, Best Film Editing (Daniel Drema) and Special Mention Angel Award for the composer (James Thomas); The Angel Humanitarian Film Award went to ‘THE FREEDOM OF HEART’ (Switzerland) directed by Jolanda Ellenberger and ‘EN – COLOUR OF LOVE’ (Japan) to director Yasushi Fuluichi for Best Art-house Film..
The Angel Film Awards was staged at the ‘Art Novo Theatre’ created by Rosana and Dean at the Novotel, a stunning new Monegasque setting. AN EVENTS’ not to be missed!
A very special warm Thanks to The Honorary AFA President the Award winning poet & rock-star ‘DONOVAN’ inducted to Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2012..who rocked the festival...!!