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DOKUFEST 2023 Awards

João Rosas' Death of a City gets the Doc Alliance Award at Dokufest


- Marie Bottois' The Cervix Pass has won the Best Short Film gong, while Kumjana Novakova and Guillermo Carreras Candi's Disturbed Earth received a Special Mention

João Rosas' Death of a City gets the Doc Alliance Award at Dokufest
Director João Rosas accepting his award for Death of a City

The winners of the 2023 Doc Alliance Award were announced on Saturday at the awards ceremony of Dokufest in Prizren, Kosovo. The Doc Alliance Award for Best Feature Film, endowed with €5,000, went to Death of a City by Portuguese filmmaker João Rosas. The picture follows the demolition of an old printing workshop in the centre of Lisbon to make way for luxury flats. What starts out as a work-centred film turns out to be an evocative account of the director's relationship with his hometown and the people who build it, shining a light on the violence and destruction that hide beneath the outward progress of our cities.

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The jury, comprising programmer and curator Jonathan Ali, Lightdox CEO Anna Berthollet and programmer Arnaud Hée, of the Bibliothèque publique d’information du Centre Pompidou, commended the director “for an intelligently politicised work and its salutary portrayal of the lives of the people therein; an incisive and moving exploration of the face of modern Europe”.

The Doc Alliance Award for Best Short Film, worth €3,000, went to The Cervix Pass by Marie Bottois. In her film, the director refers to the founding of the Movement for Abortion and Contraception Freedom in France in 1973. In the style of militant and feminist films of the time, she documents the insertion of an intrauterine device inside her own body. The jury praised the film’s “ability to organise a moving and playful coexistence between life and cinema. Marie Bottois combines in a remarkable way political and cinematographic rigour, courage and humour, frontality and delicacy”.

Meanwhile, Disturbed Earth [+see also:
interview: Kumjana Novakova, Guillermo…
film profile
, a feature-length documentary by Kumjana Novakova and Guillermo Carreras Candi, received a Special Mention. The film was nominated by Dokufest, this year’s guest festival of Doc Alliance.

The Cervix Pass and Disturbed Earth are available on until 31 August along with a selection of nominated short films and Doc Alliance Award winners from previous editions.

The Doc Alliance network, comprising CPH:DOX, Doclisboa, DOK Leipzig, FIDMarseille, Ji.hlava IDFF, Millennium Docs Against Gravity FF and Visions du Réel, as well as a guest festival, nominates one short and one feature-length documentary film from its past programme. In addition, each festival in the network shows at least three films from the selection at its next edition.

The network is inviting European documentary film festivals to apply as guest festival for 2024. The guest festival will be part of the network and will participate in the selection of nominees for the Doc Alliance Award.

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