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The Push by Grant Korgan
The Push by Grant Korgan

Michael Franti’s Stay Human tied with Grant Korgan’s The Push for the Audience Award for Best Feature Film at the 5th annual ILLUMINATE Film Festival, in Sedona.

Stay Human takes viewers on a journey through music and the stories of some of the most inspiring individuals on the planet chronicling Franti’s experiences with people that he’s met on his travels who have chosen to overcome cynicism with optimism, hope, tenacity, music, and love. Directed by Grant Korgan and Brian Niles, The Push tells Korgan’s inspiring tale of triumph after becoming paralyzed in a snowmobile accident where he focused on 120 percent recovery to do the impossible: push his way over nearly 100 miles in Antarctica, spinal cord injury and all.

Franti also was the recipient of the festival’s inaugural Voice for Humanity Award. “It’s important to be able to see each other as human beings above all else,” noted Franti. “I believe that there is no one in the world that you wouldn’t love if you heard their story.”

The Audience Award for Best Short Film went to Black Star, directed by Akira Chan. This short documentary explores art as a healing modality to stop the VICIOUS cycle of addiction.

In a feature competition section consisting of seven world and US Premieres, You Are What You Act took home the coveted 2018 Debut Feature Competition Jury Prize. The documentary proposes a revolutionary new health trend by asking what influences us more: our minds or our bodies. Director Albert Nerenberg and other leading psychologists in embodied cognition demonstrate fascinating psychological exercises with amazing results. Honorable Mentions were also given to Calling All Earthlings for unearthing a hidden truth and to From Shock to Awe for social impact.

Living Music, directed by Libby Spears, took home the jury prize in the Debut Short Film Competition. When a promising young musician’s career is almost cut short after he loses his voice to a rare medical condition called spasmodic dysphonia, he goes on a rehabilitative journey of artistic experimentation. Vision: Seeing is Believing received an Honorable Mention for cinematography.

From Shock to Awe captured the inaugural Mangurama Award for Conscious Documentary Storytelling. Including a $5000 cash prize, the Mangurama Award goes to to the most transformative non-fiction film that exhibits a strong story arc, compelling subjects and high production value. From Shock to Awe follows THE JOURNEY of returned U.S. combat veterans as they abandon pharmaceutical drugs to seek relief through the controversial, mind-expanding world of cannabis, ayahuasca and MDMA, known as ecstasy.

Documentary 3100: Run And Become captured the Director’s Choice Award. This sweeping examination of running’s spiritual nature, follows long-distance runners in Arizona, Finland, New York City, the Japanese highlands and Africa’s Kalahari Desert.

The ILLUMINATE Film Festival Impact Award went to Secret Ingredients by Amy Hart and Jeffrey Smith, which highlights through both personal stories and scientific input the role that pesticides and GMO’s are playing in compromising health on a large scale.

2018 ILLUMINATE Film Festival Award Winners

Debut Feature Competition Jury Prize
Winner
You Are What You Act

Honorable Mention for Social Impact
From Shock to Awe

Honorable Mention for Unearthing a Hidden Truth
Calling All Earthlings

Debut Short Film Competition Jury Prize
Winner
Living Music

Honorable Mention for Cinematography
VISION: Seeing is Believing

Mangurama Award for Conscious Documentary Storytelling
From Shock to Awe

Audience Award for Best Feature
Winner (TIE)*
The Push
Stay Human

Audience Award for Best Short Film
Winner
Black Star

Runner-Up
Living Music

Director’s Choice Award
Winner
3100: Run and Become

Impact Award
Winner
Secret Ingredients

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