The jury consisting of Varja Močnik, Ognjen Radivojević and Jurij Meden would first of all like to express its heartfelt congratulations to the organizers of the Festival of Migrant Film 2014 and commend them for having put together a truly remarkable competition programme. Naturally, no less heartfelt congratulations and compliments go out to all the filmmakers, in the hope that they shall continue making activist documentaries with just as much passion and feeling in the future.
Choosing the best film among ten unique stories covering issues of current concern was no easy task. For this reason, the jury has decided to present two special mentions that go to Nathalie Mansoux for the film DEPORTED and Monika Pawluczuk for WHEN I AM A BIRD. With great visual subtlety and deep respect for the fates of the individuals portrayed, both films offer a penetrating insight into places that we as the viewers would most likely never get to see otherwise.
The award for best film goes to the documentary feature THE LAND BETWEEN by David Fedele. The all-round filmmaker from Australia presents us with a front-page story that many of us may be familiar with. His ambitious documentary, however, puts names, voices and personal histories to the cold migration statistics. David Fedele knows very well who he is filming with, how and why he is making the film and who he wants to address. He does not extend his gaze endlessly, beyond the horizon of the sewer of capitalism, but focuses on the concrete and particular, which then all the more effectively becomes a metaphor for the universal. THE LAND BETWEEN is not only an excellent film, but also a political catalyst that unsettles the viewer and turns his empathy into anger. The sort of anger that brings the anticipation of change.