email print share on Facebook share on Twitter share on reddit pin on Pinterest

MAX OPHÜLS PRIZE 2021 Awards

Borga wins the 2021 Max Ophüls Prize

by 

- German director York-Fabian Raabe's first feature has been handed the Award for Best Feature Film plus three more prizes at this year's Max Ophüls Prize Festival

Borga wins the 2021 Max Ophüls Prize
Borga by York-Fabian Raabe

A selection of the most promising new productions from Germany, Austria and Switzerland has just been presented at this year's Max Ophüls Preis Festival (18-24 January) in Saarbrücken. The festival traditionally focuses on debut films by young filmmakers and offers them a platform for exposure. This year, the programme of feature, medium-length and short films in the categories of fiction titles as well as documentaries was made available online. Several juries were tasked with awarding a series of prizes for each selection.

(The article continues below - Commercial information)

The best feature film of this, the 42nd edition of the festival, was awarded a prize worth €36,000. A jury of four people, which included German director Johannes Maria Schmit, whose film Neubau was the winner of last year's edition of the Max Ophüls Prize, thought that Borga [+see also:
interview: York-Fabian Raabe
film profile
]
by York-Fabian Raabe stood out on account of the beauty of its visuals, and its interesting and important point of view. It is therefore not surprising that the film was also awarded the gong for Best Social Interest Film by the same jury. The award money of €5,000 went to Eugene Boateng, the associate producer of, and main actor in, the film, acknowledging his ability to create a relatable figure based around a person of colour, who would normally play the role of the “other” or the “foreigner” in cinema made by white people.

Borga won two more important awards at the festival. The first was the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury, worth €2,500. The co-production between Germany and Ghana gives a voice to refugees and questions our social and economic structures, showing the impacts of the Western-dominated methods of consumption on the African continent, according to the jury. The fourth prize it scooped was the Audience Award, for which voting took place directly online.

An Audience Award was also given to a documentary – namely, Dear Future Children by Franz Böhm. The Award for the Best Music in a Documentary went to The Case You by Alison Kuhn. A third Audience Award was also given to a short film in competition: Swiss filmmaker Kevin Haeflin's Trumpet.

The second big winner at this year's festival was Fox in a Hole by Austrian director Arman T Riahi, as the Saarland Minister-President's Award for Best Director, worth €5,500, went to this social drama about a teacher in a prison for juvenile delinquents. The film stood out on account of its interesting and convincing ensemble cast, as well as its sense of pacing and its consistent camera work. Fox in a Hole also won the Prize of the Youth Jury, the members of which were captivated by the wide range of emotions that were conveyed to the audience. In addition to this, the movie also won the Fritz-Raff Award for Best Screenplay.

The Awards for Best Lead Actor and Best Lead Actress went to Jonas Holdenrieder for his role in Trübe Wolken by German director Christian Schäfer and Sara Fazilat for her performance in Nico by Eline Gehring.

Finally, standing out as Best Documentary was Stollen by Germany’s Laura Reichwald. The film paints the portrait of a German village where the residents earn a living by producing Christmas decorations and through mining.

Here is the complete list of award winners at the 2021 Max Ophüls Preis Festival:

Best Feature Film
Borga [+see also:
interview: York-Fabian Raabe
film profile
]
– York-Fabian Raabe (Germany)

Best Social Interest Film
Borga – York-Fabian Raabe

The Saarland Minister-President's Award for Best Director
Fox in a Hole – Arman T Riahi (Austria)

Best Documentary
Stollen - Laura Raichwald (Germany)

Fritz-Raff Award for Best Screenplay
Fox in a Hole – Arman T Riahi

Best Actor
Jonas Holdenrieder – Trübe Wolken (Germany)

Best Actress
Sara Fazilat – Nico (Germany)

Audience Award for Best Feature Film
Borga – York-Fabian Raabe

Audience Award for Best Documentary
Dear Future Children – Laura Reichwald (Germany)

Audience Award for Best Short Film
Trumpet – Kevin Haefelin (Switzerland)

Audience Award for Best Medium-length Film
Tala'vision - Murad Abu Eisheh (Germany/Jordan)

Best Medium-length Film
Tala'vision - Murad Abu Eisheh

Best Short Film
Fische – Raphaela Schmid (Austria)

Prize of the Ecumenical Jury
Borga – York-Fabian Raabe

Young Jury Award
Fox in a Hole – Arman T Riahi

Best Music in a Documentary
The Case You – Alison Kuhn (Germany)

(The article continues below - Commercial information)

Did you enjoy reading this article? Please subscribe to our newsletter to receive more stories like this directly in your inbox.

Privacy Policy