The Chilean filmmaker Dominga Sotomayor was the winner of the Leopard Award for Best Director for her third feature film Tarde para morir joven / Too Late to Die Young at the 71st edition of the Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland.
The film a co-production of Chile, Brazil, Argentina, the Netherlands and Qatar is set in 1990 when Chile transitioned to democracy, and follows 16-year-old Sofia, who lives far off the grid in a mountain enclave of artists and bohemians. Too Late to Die Young takes place during the hot, languorous days between Christmas and New Year’s Day, when the troubling realities of the adult world—and the elemental forces of nature—begin to intrude on her teenage idyll.
Shot in dreamily diaphanous, sun-splashed images and set to period-perfect pop, the second feature from one of Latin American cinema’s most artful and distinctive voices is at once nostalgic and piercing, a portrait of a young woman—and a country—on the cusp of exhilarating and terrifying change.
Other Latin American winners at the Locarno Film Festival include Colombian filmmaker Laura Huertas Millán, winner of the Best Director Award in the Pardi di Domani competition for her short film El laberinto / The Labyrinth; a Special Mention to the Mexican-Canadian film Fausto by Andrea Bussmann in the Cineasti del presente competition; and a Special Mention to the Colombian-Argentine short film La máxima longitud de un puente / Big Bridge by Simón Vélez in the Pardi di Domani competition.