Amat Escalante's Heli (pictured) was the top winner at the 35th edition of the Havana Film Festival as it was awarded the Coral pirze for Best Film. The film tells the story of a factory worker who lives a modest life with his father and his sister Estela in rural Mexico. In a misguided attempt to finance his elopement with the 12-year-old Estela, police cadet Beto steals two large packages of cocaine, setting off a string of increasingly bloody, painful, and even fatal consequences. The Mexican premiered at the Cannes Film Festival last May, earning the prize for Best Director.
Argentinean film Wakolda / The German Doctor by Lucía Puenzo was awarded the Special Jury Prize. The second Coral prize was awarded to the Uruguayan film El lugar del hijo / The Militant, the sophomore production by Manuel Nieto Zas, which also won the prize for Best Cinematography and the FIPRESCI award. The third Coral prize was awarded to the Chilean film Gloria by Sebastián Lelio. Venezuelan film Pelo malo / Bad Hair by Mariana Rondón received a Jury Mention.
Brazilian film O Lobo Atras da Porta / Wolf at the Door by Fernando Coimbra received the prize for Best First Film, while Mexican film La Jaula de Oro by Diego Quemada-Diez received a Special Jury Prize in the same category. The winner of the prize for Best Documentary was the Brazilian film Elena by Petra Costa. The 35th edition of the Havana Film Festival took place December 5-15 in Cuba.