The Argentinean film Paulina / La Patota, the sophomore production by Santiago Mitre (pictured left), was awarded the top prize for Best Latin American Film in the Latino Horizons competition at the 63rd edition of the San Sebastian Film Festival. Mitre’s film was also presented with two ancillary prizes: the TVE-Another Look and the EZAE Youth Awards.
Starring Dolores Fonzi in the title role, Paulina tells the story of a young woman, who gives up a brilliant lawyer’s carrier, in order to dedicate herself to teaching in a depressed region in Argentina. In a rough environment, she sticks to her teaching mission and to her political engagement, accepting to sacrifice her boyfriend and the trust of her father, a powerful local judge. Upon her arrival, she is violently attacked by a gang of young people, some of them being her own students. Despite the trauma and the inability to understand, Paulina will strive to stand for her convictions.
The jury in the Latino Horizons competition decided to give two Special Mentions: one for Venezuelan actor Luis Silva from Desde allá / From Afar, and to the Mexican film Te prometo anarquía / I Promise You Anarchy by Julio Hernández Cordón
Other Latin American winners at San Sebastian include El apóstata / The Apostate by Uruguayan director Federico Veiroj who was presented with the Special Jury Awardd in the official competition and the FIPRESCI Award, and the Colombian film La tierra y la sombra / Land and Shade by César Augusto Acevedo was the winner of the Spanish Cooperation Award.
Argentinean actor Ricardo Darín received the Silver Shell for Best Actor (ex aequo) for his work in Cesc Gay’s Truman, while Cuban actress Yordanka Ariosa was the winner of the Silver Shell for The King of Havana / El rey de la Habana by Agustí Villaronga. In the New Directors competition, the Chilean film Vida sexual de las plantas / Sex Life of Plants by Sebastián Brahm was presented with a Special Jury Mention.
The 63rd edition the San Sebastian Film Festival took place September 18 - 26 in Spain.