Due to covid-19 pandemic, the 9th edition of Curaçao IFFR (CIFFR), scheduled for April 21 to 26 2020 in Willemstad, Curaçao, has been cancelled. To continue to offer visibility to filmmakers from the Caribbean region, IFFR has made six previous winners of the Yellow Robin Award available to watch online in Curaçao and the Benelux until May 12 2020.
Ever since its launch in 2013 at the second edition of CIFFR, the Yellow Robin Award Competition has served as the festival’s major platform for upcoming filmmaking talent from the region.
Festival director IFFR Vanja Kaludjercic: “The Yellow Robin Award Competition serves as a launch pad for participating filmmakers to gain access to the wider international film scene. Their personal stories are of great value and enrich the cinema IFFR stands for.”
Each year, an international jury decides which filmmaker receives the $10,000 prize. On top of that, the winning film goes on to screen at the next editions of both IFFR and Mexico’s Morelia International Film Festival.
IFFR Unleashed now presents six recent winning films, by filmmakers hailing from Panama, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Mexico and the Dominican Republic.
Tierra adentro (Inland) (winner Yellow Robin Award 2019)
Mauro Colombo, 2019, Panama, 70’
Colombo’s urgent documentary feature debut shows the filmmaker immersing himself in the Darién Gap, a dense and mysterious jungle that divides Panama and Colombia. At the dangerous border between these two countries, guerrillas, immigrants, indigenous people, farmers, drug traffickers, police, and wild animals cross paths.
Black Mother (winner Yellow Robin Award 2018)
Khalik Allah, 2018, Jamaica/USA, 77’
Life’s key elements come together in the colourful Jamaica portrayed by Khalik Allah. In this polyphonic film symphony, every inhabitant views their island paradise differently, be they prostitutes, graybeards, rappers, Rastafarians or pregnant women.
El hombre que cuida (The Watchman) (winner Yellow Robin Award 2017)
Alejandro Andújar, 2017, Dominican Republic/Puerto Rico/Brazil, 85’
Major tensions lurk beneath the otherwise placid surface of this sunny island drama. Taciturn Juan tries to forget a lost love while his daily routine as watchman at one of the villas along the coast is disrupted by the arrival of the owner’s son.
Antes que cante el gallo (Before the Rooster Crows) (winner Yellow Robin Award 2016)
Arí Maniel Cruz, 2016, Puerto Rico, 98’
Coming-of-age drama in which a Puerto Rican teen girl is living at her strict grandmother’s house, waiting until she can move to America to be with her mom. That gets cancelled. As she suffers and struggles with puberty, her natural father suddenly appears after years in prison.
Las vacas con gafas (Cows Wearing Glasses) (winner Yellow Robin Award 2015)
Alex Santiago Pérez, 2014, Puerto Rico, 93’
When a solitary, eccentric artist and professor hears he’s going blind, he has to come to terms with this terrifying fact and also sort things out with his daughter, who became estranged from him years ago. Subtle drama about ageing and coming to terms with the inevitable.
No quiero dormir sola (She Doesn’t Want to Sleep Alone) (winner Yellow Robin Award 2013)
Natalia Beristáin, 2012, Mexico, 85’
Restrained drama about loneliness, memories and family relationships. Thirty-something Amanda’s life changes dramatically when she has to care for her alcoholic grandmother. After a difficult beginning, the two women discover they have more in common than they thought.