31st Festival International du Films de Fribourg

31.03.2017 to 08.04.2017
The Apprentice

Winner of the Grand Prix: "The Apprentice" (© Festival International de Fribourg)

""This should be the primary purpose of any self-respecting festival: to never indulge certainties. Quite the opposite: it should question and destabilise them and, if possible, take them on unexpected new journeys." Thus Thierry Jobin, artistic director of the Festival International de Films de Fribourg, characterizes the guiding idea of the event. As a key word for the various sections of the festival, he chose "the world upside down" - a world in which the current hierarchies, such as those between the north and the south of our earth, are "twisted" and interchanged.

The Ecumenical Jury chose its prize winner from the international competition for long films from Asia, Latin America, Africa and Eastern Europe, which comprised around twelve productions. It awarded the Nepalese film "White Sun" (Seto Surya), directed by Deepak Rauniyar, which won the INTERFILM Award for Promoting Interreligious Dialogue by the INTERFILM Jury in Venice before. Films and film artists from Nepal had been invited also for the festival section "New Territories", the Nepalese guests judging the short films created at Swiss film academies for the new festival award "Foreign Visa Prize" as well. " The "Genre Cinema" section was devoted to ghost stories: a "focus on those cultures that speak without taboos about death and ghosts," as Thierry Jobin said. The section "Decrypted" was about the "fundamental turn", which was brought about by the replacement of the analogue film by digitalisation.  The festival opened with the documentary "The Eagle Huntress" by Otto Bell about the first female eagle-hunter of Mongolia.

"White Sun" was also awarded with a Special Mention by the International Jury, with the "Don Quijote Prize" of the international film club association FICC, and with the Audience Award. It will be distributed by trigon-film. The International Jury awarded the Grand Prix of the festival to "Apprentice", directed by Boo Junfeng from Singapore, and the Special Jury Award to "Honeygiver Among the Dogs", directed by Dechen Roder, the first fiction film by a woman director from Bhutan.

Link: Festival website



White Sun
Directed by:

The burial of an old man in a remote village in Nepal threatens to fail because the quarreling family can not overcome old traditions and political differences. The cleverly narrated, multi-layered film reflects in a simple family history the difficult situation of a country after a long-term civil war. Director Deepak Rauniyar pleads in a light, humorous tone for reconciliation between the war parties, between generations, between man and woman, between tradition and modernity. After all, it is the children who bring the white sun to gleam - the sun of the future, of reconciliation and hope.