Magazine article Screen International

Berlin: Flocking Wins Crystal Bear

Magazine article Screen International

Berlin: Flocking Wins Crystal Bear

Article excerpt

Swedish teen drama takes top prize in the Generation 14plus strand.

A young jury has named Beata Gårdeler's Flocking (Flocken) the Crystal Bear winner for Best Film in the Generation 14plus section of the Berlin Film Festival (Feb 5-15).

The Swedish film centres on a 14-year old girl who reports she has been raped, but is not believed, leading to her entire village turns against the teenager and her family.

"The film which struck us the most was one which succeeds in continuously maintaining its oppressive atmosphere," said the jury in a statement. "This film gives us a precise and intense experience of the mechanisms of progressive social exclusion, triggered by an accusation. It excels in its portrayal of the role of social networks, where anonymity can lead to the unchecked build-up of aggression. A great cast, gripping dialog and unexpected developments combine to create an extraordinary work."

A special mention was given to Sam de Jong's Prince (Prins). The Dutch film, in which a troubled teen tries to win the love of his life by becoming the baddest boy on the block, was praised for its "a perky, dynamic and colourful appearance".

The jury added: "Aesthetically composed images lead us into the world of a protagonist who is torn between his desire for appreciation and his determination to do the right thing. The self-ironic treatment of stereotypes, the creative cinematography and the stirring soundtrack all grant this movie its cult appeal.

The following awards were also handed out...

Crystal Bear for the Best Short Film: A Confessionby Petros Silvestros, UK 2015

With clear, monumental images the winning short film stresses the relationship between authoritarian sway and helplessness, erupting into violence. Within a limited amount of shots the film develops an extraordinary tension and intensity. Years of silence and suppression ultimately culminate in a nightmare scenario, which left us stunned and shocked at the same time.

Special Mention Short Film: Nellyby Chris Raiber, Austria 2014

Loss, transition, the hereafter: With its compelling imagery this short film draws, in a poetic and surreal way, the state between life and death. Although we were directly captured by the puzzling composition of images, in the end it was the smart turn, which makes the film so extraordinary and left us captivated long after the screening. …

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