STRASBOURG, France, Jan 30, 2023 (AFP) – Spanish director Eduardo Casanova on Sunday saw his “La Pieta” drama about a toxic mother-son relationship take top prize at France’s Gerardmer international horror and science fiction film festival.
The film, set in 2011, depicts the bond between the mother, Libertad, and her son Mateo as an analogy for the relationship between the people of North Korea and its government.
The odd couple’s story is upended when Mateo is diagnosed with brain cancer.
“La Pieta” (piety) is 31-year-old Casanova’s follow-up to his controversial 2017 noir offering “Skins”.
Casanova took the Grand Prize along with the youth jury accolade.
Jury prizes also went to “Piaffe”, the debut effort of Israeli director Ann Oren, and “La Montagne” (The Mountain) by French director Thomas Salvador, who also carried off the critics’ award.
To mark the 30th edition of the festival US director Chloe Okuno was awarded a special accolade for “Watcher” about an American woman in Bucharest who suspects a stranger watching her from across her street could be a serial killer.
The festival also feted Jaume Balaguero, who presented his work “Venus”, a three-time jury prize winner.
South Korea’s Kim Jee-woon, a grand prize winner in 2004 for “A Tale of Two Sisters”, was also invited to give a masterclass on film production.