The Heiresses / Las herederas, the debut feature by Paraguayan filmmaker Marcelo Martinessi was the winner of the top prize for Best Film at the 17th edition of the Transilvania International Film Festival. The award, which comes with a cash prize of €15,000, was presented to the only Latin American production among the 12 titles in the official competition at the Rumanian film festival.
Set in Asunción, The Heiresses follows Chela and Chiquita, who both descended from wealthy families in the Paraguayan capital and have been together for over 30 years. However, their financial situation has recently worsened and they begin selling off their inherited possessions. But when their debts lead to Chiquita being imprisoned on fraud charges, Chela is forced to face a new reality.
According to the festival, Martinessi impressed the jury with his rigor in direction and the captivating rhythm of the narrative. The Heiresses had received the Silver Bears Alfred Bauer prize and for Best Actress at the past edition of the Berlinale this last February, and has become a landmark film for Paraguayan cinema.
The 17th edition of the Transilvania Film Festival took place May 25 - June 3 in Rumania.