HAWAII INT'L FILM FESTIVAL
A man's visit with his family turns into a political and spiritual awakening in "Cavite," the Golden Maile winner of the Louis Vuitton Hawaii International Film Festival.
Gripping political drama ‘Cavite’ wins prized HIFF award
The emotionally captivating political thriller "Cavite," from the Philippines, about terrorism and life and death decisions in the digital age, is the 25th annual Louis Vuitton Hawaii International Film Festival's Golden Maile award winner for best feature.
"Sisters in Law," from Cameroon, won the Golden Maile for Best Documentary Film. The winners were announced last night at the HIFF award ceremony at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel.
"Cavite," directed by Ian Gamazon and Neill dela Llana, is about a man's trip to the Philippines to visit his family. But he is forced to become the tool of a local terrorist group intent on overturning the Philippine government, which it views as corrupt. The trip becomes a political and spiritual awakening while exploring what it is to be a Muslim in the Philippines and a Filipino and Muslim in America.
"Sisters in Law," written, directed and produced by Kim Longinotto, examines the work of one small courthouse in Cameroon. The tough-minded state prosecutor Vera Ngassa and court president Beatrice Ntuba assist women in their Muslim village, fighting difficult cases of abuse despite pressures from their family and community to remain silent.
The late Kayo Hatta received two honors, including the state's Film in Hawaii Award for her contributions to the local film industry, and the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences Hawaii Film & Videomaker Award for her entry "Fishbowl," a comical coming-of-age tale based on Lois-Ann Yamanaka's novel "Wild Meat and the Bully Burgers."
Other award winners:
» Eastman Kodak Award for Excellence in Cinematography: Russell Boyd. The award-winning Australian cinematographer is associated with many of Australia's great films, including "Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World," "Tin Cup," "Gallipoli" and "Picnic at Hanging Rock."
» Film in Hawaii Award (honorable mention): "Wahine O Ke Kai" (Hawaii), directed by Vince Keala
» HIFF Maverick Award: Sonny Chiba, who starred in more than 125 films at Toei Studios and has been a major influence in martial arts movies for more than 30 years.
» HIFF Award of Excellence: Toei Film Studios
» HIFF Lifetime Achievement Award: Zhang Yimou (previously announced)
» HIFF Award for International Achievement in Acting: Samuel L. Jackson (to be presented in a special reception Friday)
» Honolulu Magazine Award for Best Short Film: "Crickets" (Israel) and "Valtor the Great vs. the Universe (Hawaii). Matan Guggenheim's "Crickets" tells the tale of a man who gambles on terrorist attacks as a cure to quiet the imaginary cricket sounds in his head. Gerard Elmore's "Valtor" is about a galactic hero. Each director receives $2,500.
» Cause & f(x) Dream Digital Award: "Late Bloomer" (Japan), directed by Go Shibata
» Hawaiian Airlines Audience Choice Awards: Best Feature: "American Fusion" (USA), by director Frank Lin; Best Documentary: "Keepers of the Flame" (Hawaii), by Eddie and Myrna Kamae; Best Short: "Sand Island Drive Inn Anthem," by director Ryan Kawamoto (Hawaii)
» Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema Award: "Season of the Horse," by director Ning Cai, a beautiful and mournful Chinese film that revolves around the efforts of an ethnic Mongolian tribal family to maintain their ancestral lifestyle in their lonely yurt.