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Brooklyn directed by John Crowley won the People’s Choice Award for Best Narrative Feature, and The Champions directed by Darcy Dennett won the People’s Choice Award for Best Documentary Feature at the 2015 Denver Film Festival (DFF) which ran from November 4-15 in Denver.  Hitchcock/Truffaut directed by Kent Jones won the juried Maysles Brothers Award for Best Documentary Film, and Rams, directed by Grímur Hákonarson won the juried Krzysztof Kieślowski Award for Best Feature Film.  Krisha directed by Trey Edward Shults (pictured above) won the American Independent Narrative Award.

“Beginning with our Opening Night presentation of Anomalisa to closing with Coming Through the Rye with so many unforgettable stories in between, the 38th Denver Film Festival certainly swept away audiences and welcomed filmmakers from around the world to share their impressive work,” said Denver Film Society Festival firector, Britta Erickson. “In one of our most successful festivals to date, it is a true honor to officially recognize the outstanding filmmaking this year’s award recipients have demonstrated.”

The 38th Denver Film Festival complete list of award winners:

Narrative Feature
Winner: Brooklyn

Documentary Feature
Winner: The Champions

Short Film
Winner: The House is Innocent

Music Video
Winner: Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats – “S.O.B.”

The Maysles Brothers Award for Best Documentary Film
Winner: Hitchcock/Truffaut directed by Kent Jones (USA)

Hitchcock/Truffaut Kent Jones

The jury stated: “One of the Maysles Brothers special gifts as filmmakers was that they allowed their stories to unfold in front of them with open minds and eyes, with a genuine love for their subjects and an empathy and compassion which gave all of their work beauty and authenticity.

“When watching the films in this year’s competition, we were looking for filmmaking which demonstrated a similar openness: a willingness to let a story be told in a manner that illuminates the human condition, yet executed with sure-handed direction in a visually compelling fashion. One film-one that on its face is simply about a book-created an enthralling tale about passion for both a subject (film and filmmaking) and friendship, one that grew out of eight days of elevated conversation about art, film and the creative process.

“In Hitchcock/Truffaut director Kent Jones uses archival footage, still photography, film clips and contemporary interviews to weave a beautiful portrait of two artists connected by the deepest talent and humanity-and humor! It is an cinematic manifestation of the interviews between Francois Truffaut and Alfred Hitchcock which achieves what Truffaut set out to do as a journalist-to remind everyone what a master of cinema Hitchcock truly was. The documentary is a deft and captivating piece of filmmaking that transcends the world of the cinephile and reveals two fascinating people who by the end feel like old friends.”

The Krzysztof Kieślowski Award for Best Feature Film
Winner: Rams, directed by Grímur Hákonarson (Iceland)

RAMS, Director: Grímur Hákonarson

The jury stated: “For its evocative filming of landscapes, for placing us in the midst of a way of life coming to a devastating end, and for making a film that moves us from pure hate to pure love, we award the 2015 Kieślowski award to Rams.”

Special Jury Prize: Lamb, directed by Yared Zaleke (France)
The jury stated: “For its heartfelt, beautifully observed, visually ravishing and emotionally acute exploration of a young boy’s coming of age in a rural Ethiopian village, we award a Special Jury Prize to director Yared Zaleke’s Lamb.”

Special Ensemble Acting Jury Award: The Measure of a Man (France)
The jury stated: “For its pitch-perfect naturalism, its ability to find beauty in the otherwise mundane, and for its consistently arresting performances, we award a special Ensemble Acting Prize to The Measure of a Man.”

The American Independent Narrative Award
Winner: Krisha, directed by Trey Edward Shults (USA)

The jury stated: “A fraught suburban Thanksgiving is hardly new territory for cinema, but Krisha takes the concept to wildly dynamic and unusual places. Director Trey Edward Shults has created a fully formed, formally experimental portrait of authentic family dynamics that feels intimate and lived in. We’re so pleased to present the American Independent Narrative Award to Krisha.”

Special Jury Prize, Filmmaker to Watch: H., directed by Rania Attieh and Daniel Garcia

The jury stated: “Because days later we still can’t stop thinking about the audacious storytelling and bold vision of the transfixing H. and can’t wait to see what Rania Atteih and Daniel Garcia do next.”

The Liberty Global International Student Short Award
Winner: Disintegration, directed by Álvaro Martín (Spain)

The jury stated: “This was a difficult decision as every film in this category was unique and impressive, but the standout winner was Disintegration. Playing as a remarkable portrait of childhood while delving into topical social issues, Álvaro Martín created magic that is enjoyable and heartbreaking at the same time. We appreciate the risk he took in creating this film and look forward to see what he makes next.”

Special Jury Prize for Outstanding Directing: The Fantastic Love of Beeboy and Flowergirl, directed by Clemens Roth (Germany)

The jury stated: “From striking visuals to creative storytelling, Clemens Roth masterfully created a compelling world that beautifully mixed fantasy and reality in The Fantastic Love of Beeboy and Flowergirl.”

The Spike Lee Student Filmmaker Award
Winner: Oasis, directed by Sara Lafleur-Vetter (USA)

The jury stated: “Oasis is an informative and gripping documentary that takes a closer look at the health care system that left behind those who can’t take care of themselves and one doctor who continues to fight on their behalf. We hope director Sara Lafleur-Vetter continues to bring awareness to this community through the power of film.”

Feature Screenplay Award
Winner: Memory by John Benge

Short Screenplay Award
Winner: Symposium by Tom Grady

Denver Film Festival Awards
John Cassavetes Award: John Turturro
Maria & Tommaso Maglione Italian Filmmaker Award: Nanni Moretti (Mia Madre, Italy)
Reel Social Club Indie Spirit Award: Benjamin Dickinson (Creative Control, USA)
Rising Star Award presented by Rise Above Colorado: Alex Wolff (Coming Through the Rye, USA)
Stan Brakhage Vision Award: Nathaniel Dorsky
True Grit Award: Decay

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