All the Asian winners of the international Life After Oil (LAO) festival

The 9th edition of the Life After Oil International Festival was held physically in Villanovaforru, Sardinia, and ended with the closing ceremony on Saturday September 24, after four intense days of free films, guests, music , gourmet sports and a five-a-side game. football tournament. The jury made up of journalists and industry members and a special jury made up of Fridays for Future, UniCa LGBT of the University of Cagliari, the Reception Center for Asylum Seekers of Villanovaforru (ERC) and the Institute of Higher Education Sanluri Vignarelli Audience, announced the winners at the ceremony.

Problems related to the use of fossil fuels and possible alternatives. Denounces against all types of exploitation and stories of hope for a fairer world. Life After Oil, is the only film festival in Sardinia that specifically deals with environmental and human rights issues at an international level. Conceived and directed by Massimiliano Mazzotta, the event has increasingly become an important opportunity for dialogue for filmmakers, activists and associations of different nationalities who wish to discuss energy issues and the search for a more durable and suitable for all.

A total of 1,541 works had been submitted, far more than last year, a demonstration of the growth of the festival. Many of them are first works, confirming how Life After Oil continues to consider and promote young directors and not just the best known and most successful authors.

But let’s look at Asian films and films about Asia, including the “winners”:

“Valentina Pedicini” award for best feature and medium-length film on human rights
FEMININITY by Mohsen Ostad Ali – Documentary – Iran 2020
For the intense but discreet gaze with which the author manages to capture the humanity enclosed in each story, pursuing his own idea of ​​cinema without renouncing rigor. A work that leaves no room for easy sentimentality while telling highly emotional stories, able to pursue its own style and visual coherence while maintaining authenticity and naturalness.

Special Mention of MEDICINA DEMOCRATICA – Best Film Category
TRICKED IN SURGERY: THE HYSTERECTOMY SCANDAL IN INDIA
by Mathilde Cusin – Documentary – France 2021
Shot with attention and meticulousness, Tricked into surgery exposes the scandal of the mass hysterectomy practiced unnecessarily on the workers, even very young, of the sugar cane farms of central-western India. The film reveals the abuse of the female body perpetrated for profit by bosses reluctant to employ fertile women threatened by the toxic substances with which they come into contact during their work. This is a precise “anthropological” analysis. document how, still in the third millennium, industrial practices in collusion with a corrupt medical profession can prevail by deception over the well-being and the body of entire populations economically and culturally subjugated.

Best Environmental Short Film
VADIYAR by Marjan Khosravi – Fiction – Iran 2021
A short film whose cinematography manages to highlight the incredible landscapes in which it takes place, taking us to a seemingly distant world that, between isolation and tradition, fully fits into the various forms of contemporaneity in which we live. Khosravi uses the cinematic medium with remarkable awareness. The composition of the framing is almost painterly, and it is color that acts as the main medium of narrative and atmosphere. The story is an animal fairy tale, which nevertheless does not hesitate to outline in a few strokes a lucid social analysis. The small town where the protagonist lives is indeed governed by a patriarchal regime, as well as by implicit laws based on superstition and violence, to the detriment of weak parties such as women, children and animals. Sensitive and attentive is the portrait of a childhood which already flourishes in adolescence, and which develops its forms of resistance from its relationship to the environment. A fully successful staging of the clash between humanity and nature, which raises a fundamental question: is this conflict really necessary? Where is the line between the survival of the species and the desire of man to dominate – and often to destroy – the environment?
ecosystem ?

Special Mention by ITALIA NOSTRA – Short Film Category
SENTENCE by Elliot J. Spencer – Documentary – Australia 2021
This short film, with fascinating sequences and evocative music, succeeds in capturing the emptiness we are forced into (voluntarily or not) every day, absorbed by our smartphones, and the loss of awareness of nature that escapes before our eyes, more than the recourse to dialogue and collective warnings would have sufficed. It depicts the heartbreaking reality of the simple illusion of our times, of only being able to truly exist through an illusory filter of sharing, of physical but not emotional presence. A short film that deliberately and rhetorically interweaves the narrative of a perhaps archaic and distant world with today’s world of digital communications, showing the limits and contradictions of both. Impeccable cinematography and narrative weaving succeed in the ambitious operation of showing us how these two worlds, apparently distant, are in reality two sides of the same coin, and how they fully constitute one of the many variations of the contemporary global era. .

Best Experimental Film
THE AWAKENING OF THE GODDESS by Debjani Mukherjee – Documentary – India 2020
Because of the subject. We challenge the trafficking of women because the emancipation of society is not possible without an honest and respectful integration of women. Give everyone the choice.

Best film PANORAMA OF THE WORLD
APPARATUS by Hasan Najmabadi – Fiction – Iran 2021
For his message. It makes you realize that in life you also have to make sacrifices for everything you want. In this case, the boys set to work to fulfill a dream: to watch the Italian classic “Cinema Paradiso”.

To learn more about LAO, the Official website HERE

Darcy J. Skinner