The Slovenia Times

Orchestra wins best film at the Festival of Slovenian Film


 Matevž Luzar's Orchestra, which traces members of a Slovenian wind orchestra as they travel to a brass band music festival in a small Austrian town, has won the award for best film at the 25th Slovenian Film Festival, which wrapped up on Sunday.

The film, which was recently screened across the art cinema network, also earned Luzar the award for best screenplay, and director of photography Simon Tanšek won the award for best photography.

The film tells the sombre stories of ordinary people that strike a chord with the audience, said the jury, noting that the word orchestra was not just the title of the film but also a metaphor for the director's coordination of the entire project. On the other hand, the characters' life stories are unrehearsed and they seem out of tune.

The script provides an analysis of the Slovenian and Austrian mentalities. In a sympathetic and straightforward manner, it offer an insight into the transient episodes of life and lays them bare showing all of their comic, absurd or tragic moments.

Sara Kern's debut feature Moja Vesna, a Slovenian-Australian co-production which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival this year, picked up two major awards, for best director and best female leading role, which went to Loti Kovačič.

Moja Vesna, which also won the Slovenian Art Cinema Network award, revolves around ten-year-old Moja who, after the sudden death of her mother, becomes the unexpected grown-up of her family in suburban Melbourne, trying to reconcile her pregnant older sister, Vesna, and father, who hails from Slovenia.

Kern created a visceral contrast between the protagonist and her older sister, said the jury, also praising Kovačič's screen presence and her ability to be consistent in her acting.

The best male lead award went to Petja Labović, who starred in Dominik Mencej's Jezdeca (Riders), a moped road movie set in the late 1990s that was also honoured for the best sound and editing.

Labović played the role of Anton with energy, maturity and commitment, the jury noted. The film also won the audience darling award.

The best supporting actress award went to Alenka Kraigher for her role as Jana in the film Vesolje Med Nami (The Space Among Us), and Jonas Žnidaršič received the best supporting actor award for his role as the chief police investigator in the film Dedek Gre Na Jug (Grandpa Goes South).

Several other awards were also handed out, including one for the best documentary, which was awarded to Miha Mohorič's Tekmüvanje (Competition), and the award for the best short fiction film, which went to Matjaž Ivanišin's Tako Se Je Končalo Poletje (That's How the Summer Ended).

The Festival of Slovenian Film featured 53 films, of which 16 feature films and ten minority co-productions competed for awards.


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