Award winners 2019

Best Film:
VFF Young Talent Award

Sponsor: VFF Verwertungsgesellschaft der Film- und Fernsehproduzenten mbH
Prize: 10,000 €


by Hajni Kis
University of Theatre and Film Arts, Hungary

The Jury:
From the very first frame up until the bittersweet ending, this young filmmaker convinced us of her amazing directorial skills by telling her story in a tragic and comic way at the same time. Capturing one day in the life of chaotic but warmhearted 61-year-old Anikó, director Hajni Kis made us laugh and cry, often at the same time.The heroine, Anikó, is a mother, ex-wife, and former nurse, but most of the time she is a human being who is trying to find her place in a world that might no longer have a need for her. Hajni Kis manages to surprise her audience with very delicate, well-observed, and emotional moments up until the very end, when she allows her brave heroine to find inner peace in the most unexpected way. We’re looking forward to seeing much more coming out of this young director’s mind.


Best Script:
Luggi Waldleitner-Award

Sponsor: Family Waldleitner
Prize: 3,000 €


by Kalu Oji (director & screenwriter)
Victorian College of the Arts, Australia

The Jury:
This is a glimpse of an ordinary but extraordinary dayin the life of a single mother and her teenage child, a delicate portrait of a fragile relationship that finds happiness in an intimate way. As in a poem, the filmmaker takes us to a tender moment of reconciliation between two people who feel unheard. BLACKWOOD gives us a glimpse of a very specific reality. It proves to be a cinematic pearl, beautifully framed on film.


Best Documentary:

Sponsor: Arnold & Richter Cine Technik
Prize: 4,000 € worth of rental services by ARRI


by Hadas Hechter
The Jerusalem Sam Spiegel Film School, Israel

The Jury:
This film finds a cinematic language for the so often unspeakable. Left in the dark at first, the viewer slowly fathoms the dimension of an account of family history. Using amontage of archival material and interviews, the film reflects upon violent gazes, abuse, and domestic violence. Instead of stressing collective trauma, it explores a common strategy of resilience and the strong bond of siblinghood. Not believing in secrets,THE OPPOSITE OF LOVEIS NOT HATE makes a formally clever case for radical honesty.


Best Camera:
Student Camera Award

Sponsor: Film & TV Kamera
Prize: 2,000 €


Camera: Kenneth Cyrus
Satyajit Ray Film and Television Institute, India

The Jury:
Precise frames, long takes, almost no movement at all: the cinematographic story is there, capturing the right moments, just being around, letting time pass. There is no hurry at all. The camera work leads us discreetly into the lives of an old couple as they wait for their right to die. Sometimes less is more. Congratulations from the jury to DP Kenneth Cyrus for AN IRRELEVANT DIALOGUE!


Best Animation:
zweiB Award

Sponsor: zweiB GmbH
Prize: prize money of € 1,000 and a professional DCP-Mastering (worth € 1,500)


by Maria Trigo Teixeira
Film University Babelsberg Konrad Wolf, Germany

The Jury:
INSIDE ME creates a small universe with wonderful and poetic animations that interact with a very strong voice-over in an unexpected way. An uncomfortable subject is treated with grace and sensitivity in all its many facets, with no fear of unconfessed feelings or thoughts. Maria Trigo Teixeira ably leads us on an intimate but universal journey.



Sponsor: Arte
Prize: Arte buys the broadcast rights to a film (fictional genre) no longer than 15 minutes for up to € 6,000


by Ragini Bhasin
Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film & Media Arts, USA

The Jury of the ARTE-Shortfilm-Award:
A young girl at a refugee camp is at the center of this tender and clever short film, which has an almost documentary feel to it. Becoming a woman, “being unclean”, and searching for tampons, all the while in impoverished circumstances, is told in stark, vivid imagery. We offer our sincere congratulations to filmmaker Ragini Bhasin on her intense portrait of a woman in the excellent film GHAZAAL and are delighted to present her with the ARTE Short Film Award.


Best Production:

For students of a European university
Sponsor: Panther GmbH
Prize: Panther's state-of-the-art dolly equipment for a period of four weeks worth 5,000 €

The festival jury with winner Jonatan Etzler (middle)


by Jonatan Etzler (director), Johan Lundström (producer)
Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts, Sweden

The Jury:
This unsettling but brilliant thriller is full of surprises about manipulative power struggles, disinformation, and bullying among the very young in highschool, made possible by new and in principle very promising visual technologies like YouTube, set against a backdrop of a total lack of intergenerational communication. It’s amovie about the new domestic cinema tribally distributed on social media, a truly universal phenomenon raging in “progressive” northern Europe as well as around the globe. Formally, the movie is very well shot, acted, and edited. It moves at a dizzying pace: the rhythm of our times.


Prix Interculturel

Sponsor: Interfilm Akademie München
Prize: 1,500 €

Three jury members and one happy winner: from left to right - Cornelia Corba, Dr. Peter Marinković, Alice Gadbled, Gundi Doppelhammer


by Alice Gadbled
Institut des Arts de Diffusion, Belgium

The Interfilm Jury:
"That’s just not done!" — The subject of grieving and death is surrounded by taboos and uncertainties. This film encourages people to follow their instincts and find their own individual way of dealing with grief while also being strengthened by the community. It promotes treating a big, heavy subject with humor and ease. The story is handled with trust, wit, and respect for one’s individual personality. Unpretentiously and with a keen sense of expressive imagery, Alice Gadbled, the actors and actresses, and the camera succeed — despite the presence of death — in celebrating life.




by Yana Ugrekhelidze
Academy of Media Arts Cologne, Germany

The Interfilm Jury:
This animated documentary about the Abkhazian civil war shows the escape of refugees from the point of view of four children and four different escape routes. This film moves us with its expressive imagery and its courage to interweave different techniques. The film’s nonverbal language is both silent and stirring; it contrasts the cruelty of war and the misery of flight with a gentle aesthetic, combining religious symbolism, fairy-tale imaginés, and poignant music


Most original film:

Sponsor: Freundeskreis-Wolfgang-Längsfeld e.V.
Prize: 3,000 €

Jury and winner: from left to right - Sergio Guataquira Sarmiento, Sabine Bachthaler, Maya Yadlin and Uli Möller



by Maya Yadlin
Minshar School For the Arts, Israel

The Jury of the Wolfgang-Längsfeld-Award:
The jury liked the directing and framing, which create a special atmosphere between characters in a daily situation. The story is told without any pretension. It’s true, organic, and full of humor and humanity. The first shot is already an intelligent composition that puts the characters in the right place to start a film in a simple and efficient way. This film is set in a small universe that reflects feelings we all know: feelings of anger, feelings of love, feelings of distance, and feelings of intimacy —in general, the typical universe of a family. Family can be complicated, but at the end of the day it’s very simple: we have to deal with each other or we have to leave each other. Imagine this is happening in the middle of nowhere, in the desert, in a car, and in Israel, but it’s FINE. The Wolfgang Längsfeld Award for 2019 goes to Maya Yadlin and her film FINE from the Minshar School for Art.


Audience Award

Sponsor: Freundeskreis FILMFEST MÜNCHEN
Prize: € 1,500


by Maya Yadlin
Minshar School For the Arts, Israel


Special Mentions


by Grace Swee
Columbia University, USA

The Jury:
Moving on is not a simple thing, and leaving someone behind can be even harder.This film captures the relationship between and old woman and her mother with cold warmth — escalating to a severe act of violence — but how beautifully it leads us through the horrible act of killing one’s own mother (even if she’s a ghost)! It is never too late to confront one’s past.The jury wishes to give honorable mention to the movie DISTANCE, directed by Grace Swee.



by Nina Hopf
Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, Germany

The Jury:
This is an account of overlapping experience, siblinghood, and changes in the expression of one’s identity and one’s body. Haptics and the sense of touch are condensed by the formal decision to work with the layering of bodyprints. This animation visualizes the intersection of realities and creates a space for difference and likeness to be discussed. Honorable mention goes to EADEM CUTIS: THE SAME SKIN.


Climate Clips Award

Sponsor: Nagelschneider Stiftung
Prize: 1. Prize - 5,000 €, 2. Prize - 3,000 €, 3. Prize - 1,000 €

From left to right: Sonja Reichel and Gisela Scola (both Nagelschneider Stiftung), Franziska Unger (1. Prize for APOCALYPSE AIRLINES), Philipp Link (3. Prize for MY GRANDMA), Festival Director Diana Iljine and Pascal Schelbli (2. Prize for THE BEAUTY)

by Camille Tricaud & Franziska Unger
HFF München, Germany

The Climate-Clips-Jury:
"Climate-damaging air travel by tourists flying on a fictitious airline wins us over with the brilliance of a choreographed satire. The jury offers its sincere congratulations on this well-deserved first prize."

2. Prize: THE BEAUTY
by Pascal Schelbli
Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg, Germany

The Climate-Clips-Jury:
"Poetic footage shows the world’s oceans, threatened by discarded plastic, as deceptively idyllic. When will nature strike back? In awarding the second prize, the jury wishes to praise the fantasy of this bizarre coexistence."

3. Prize: MY GRANDMA
by Philipp Link
HFF München, Germany

The Climate-Clips-Jury:
"Their grandparents’ memories of their far-flung vacations are a global climate issue for today’s grandchildren. Authentically presented, in the jury’s opinion, using historical footage and honored with the third prize."


Hofbräu Trophy

Sponsor: Staatliches Hofbräuhaus in München
Prize: 1. Prize - 5,000 €, 2. Prize - 3,000 €, 3. Prize - 2,000 €

From left to right: Lukas Schwarz-Danner (2. Prize for PRICELESS), David Diebold und Paul Hirschauer (3. Prize for REVENGE OF THE KRONKORKEN), Oliver Poeschel (Hofbräu München), Festival Director Diana Iljine, Albert Meisl (accepted the award on behalf of Rupert Höller, 1. Prize for THE GOLDEN RING)


by Rupert Höller
UMDK, Filmakademie Wien, Austria

The Hofbräu-Jury:
Filmmaker Rupert Höller has a talent for close observation and for imaginatively linking ideas — or have you ever looked at a gold-rimmed glass and thought of a wedding ring? In a few vivid images set to a simple but fitting musical soundtrack, this clip tells us a little story, or perhaps a very big story. And the words “I do” apply to us as well: We do wish to award him the first prize. Congratulations!

by Danilo Pejakovic, Lukas Schwarz-Danner & Gretta Sammalniemi
HFF München, Germany

The Hofbräu-Jury:
Sometimes “drastic” images are needed to make us aware that climate change threatens all areas of our lives — even our consumer culture! We enjoy the tongue-in-cheek approach that Danilo Pejakovic, Lukas Schwarz-Danner, and Gretta Sammalniemi take to this serious topic and employ in the finest advertising aesthetic. Congratulations!

by Paul Hirschauer & David Diebold

The Hofbräu-Jury:
This commercial deftly plays with genre elements: a thrillingly directed movie trailer, set to good music, advertises the next great horror film. And the fact that it’s the unnoticed little bottle caps that take revenge demonstrates that the filmmakers have a good sense of humor. Congratulations to Paul Hirschauer and David Diebold!