Church of Sweden Film Award 2016

Film About War in Iraq Wins Angelos Award 2016 at the 39th Göteborg Film Festival

"Flickan som räddade mitt liv" (The Girl Who Saved My Live) by Hogir Hirori is the winner of the Angelos Award, the film prize of the Swedish Church, at the 39th Göteborg Film Festival 2016 (Januray 29-February 8). The Prize is endowed with 50.000 SEK by the Church of Sweden.

“There’s a war in my home country again.” That’s how the filmmaker begins his film. In August 2014 he leaves his pregnant wife in Sweden to travel to his homeland, Iraqi Kurdistan, and recount the fates that have affected the over 1.4 million people fleeing ISIS. Through the people he meets, Hogir also relates some of his own experience with war and seeking refuge, which establishes a solid legitimacy for his filmmaking and a credible identification with those he records.

The jury, appointed by the Church of Sweden, chose the winner among the 16 feature films (documentary and fiction) premiering in the competition of the Göteborg Film Festival 2016. Jury screenings are held in advance at the Gothenburg diocese office exclusively for the jury, thus enabling to present the award at the first screening of the film during the festival. The winner is kept a secret until this event.

"Hogir Hirori is not merely a spectator but allows himself to be engaged by the conflict situation in Kurdish part of Iraq. A compassionate choice becomes an artistic choice, which also saves his life. By willingly passing the camera and thus the interpretive imperative on to others he sees each and one of us as a fellow human being", the jury said in motivating their decision. Members of the jury were Reverend Mikael Riklander, Ola Sigurdson, professor of Religious Studies and Systematic Theology at the university of Göteborg, and Neta Normo, curator, filmmaker and producer.

The awarded director, Hogir Hirori, was born 1980 in Duhok, Kurdistan. In 1999 he fled to Sweden where lives and works today. He is a free lance photgrapher, editor and film maker and runs the production company Lolav Media.