RIDM 2018: Popular documentary film Hale County This Morning, This Evening gets extra Sunday screening

Hale County This Morning, This Evening shows daily life in a small Alabama town.

RIDM documentary film festival has announced an additional screening of Hale County This Morning, This Evening by RaMell Ross.

The film just won the festival’s Grand Prize for best international feature. It will be shown Sunday, Nov. 18 at 9 p.m. at the Cinémathèque Québécoise

Here is the film’s synopsis from the RIDM web site: “This first documentary feature by photographer RaMell Ross radically redefines the on-screen representation of African Americans. Filmed over nearly five years in a small Alabama town, Hale County This Morning, This Evening rejects documentary conventions in favour of a sensory, lyrical approach centred on capturing moments of everyday life. Alternating between the mundane and the sublime, the sociological and the metaphysical, Hale County takes us to the heart of a community without ever squeezing it into a utilitarian grand narrative. While some of the protagonists break away, they are just one element of the sensitive reality conveyed by the filmmaker through bold editing reminiscent of poetic writing. (BD)”

 

Here is a quote from by Bilge Ebiri in the Village Voice: “It’s not every day that you witness a new cinematic language being born, but watching RaMell Ross’s evocatively titled documentary Hale County, This Morning, This Evening qualifies. The director, a photographer and teacher who was coaching basketball in the middle of the Black Belt region of the American South, knew the subjects of his documentary for several years before deciding to create a film around them. The finished work, a half decade in the making, is informed by his deep familiarity with its characters, which might be one reason why he has the confidence to abandon traditional narrative structures and strike out on his own lyrical path.”

“By sticking to his impressionistic perspective, by fracturing his narrative, Ross achieves something genuinely poetic — a film whose very lightness is the key to its depth. Hale County traverses years, encompasses tragedy and beauty, all in just 78 minutes. His is an empathetic camera, focusing on the kinds of details that pull us into this world, with a photographer’s eye for taking everyday moments and finding transcendence in them.”

Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times: ‘It wasn’t just anywhere in Alabama that the filmmaker had moved to. Hale County, at one point largely white, was where photographer Walker Evans and writer James Agee went in the 1930s to do the work that became the legendary collaboration “Let Us Now Praise Famous Men.”

“. . .Though words can describe what “Hale County” shows, they really can’t convey how involving this visual symphony is. As much as anything else, the film is a tribute to the mystical power of the moving image, and to Ross’ keen and empathetic eye.”

Hale County, This Morning, This Evening has 22 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. Only one review is negative – the critic thinks that there are too many basketball scenes and not enough women in the film. Check out those reviews to see if Hale County, This Morning, This Evening is for you!

This article by Salamishah Tilleton, on the photography web site Aperture, discusses the film and includes many photos by director RaMell Ross.

Documentary film director RaMell Ross.

Photo of RaMell Ross borrowed from Swiss web site Film Explorer.

Hale County This Morning, This Evening
Country : United States
Year : 2018
V.O : English
Duration : 76 minutes
Cinematography : RaMell Ross
Editing : RaMell Ross
Production : Ramell Ross, Joslyn Barnes, Su Kim
Sound Design : Dan Timmons, Tony Volante

Presented In Collaboration With The Montreal International Black Film Festival

Sunday, Nov. 18 at 9 p.m. in the Salle Canal D of the Cinémathèque Québécoise, 335, de Maisonneuve E. Montréal, Québec,
H2X 1K1


<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/285919537″>Hale County This Morning, This Evening (Trailer)</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/cinemaguild”>Cinema Guild</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

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Here is the list of prize-winning documentary films from RIDM 2018

During World War II, some Polish people found refuge in Africa. The documentary film Memory is Our Homeland tells their story.

 

Below are the names of all the films which won awards at the 2018 edition of RIDM. (Rencontres internationales du documentaire de Montréal). I copied them directly from the press release.

To my surprise, I did not see any of the winning films. I certainly intended to see Memory is Our Homeland, a 90-minute feature about Polish refugees who found a warm welcome, in both senses of the word, in Africa during World War II. Both screenings were sold out, though, so I could not get in. (The subject is intriguing enough in itself, but I am relatively certain that director Jonathan Durand told me about the film at an earlier edition of RIDM, when he was doing research for it.

I had hoped to see Zagros, a 58-minute film about natural yarn dyeing and carpet weaving in Iran, but its two screenings conflicted with my other choices. Now that these films have won prizes, I hope that they will be shown again in Montreal. The filmmakers are Québecois, which should help, too!

This still from the film Zagros features some of my favourite colours!

Award winners at the 21st annual Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM)

Montreal, Saturday, November 17, 2018 – The Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM) ends tomorrow, November 18. The award winners for this 21st edition were announced during the closing ceremony that took place this evening at the Concordia University’s Alumni Auditorium.

GRAND PRIZE FOR BEST INTERNATIONAL FEATURE presented by Bell Media.

Hale County This Morning, This Evening by RaMell Ross

SPECIAL JURY PRIZE – INTERNATIONAL FEATURE

Extinction (Extinção) by Salomé Lamas

The jury for the international feature competition was composed of Mads Mikkelsen, Maria Augusta Ramos, Daniel Sponsel and Barbara Visser.

GRAND PRIZE FOR BEST CANADIAN FEATURE presented by Studios Saint-Antoine

Dark Suns by Julien Elie

SPECIAL JURY PRIZE – CANADIAN FEATURE

Symphony in Aquamarine by Dan Popa

BEST NEW TALENT FROM QUÉBEC / CANADA presented by Post-Moderne

Symphony in Aquamarine by Dan Popa

The Canadian feature competition jury was composed of Carlos Bonfil, Rosalie Lavoie and Fabienne Moris.

BEST INTERNATIONAL SHORT OR MEDIUM-LENGTH FILM

The Disappearance of Goya by Toni Geitani

Special mention

Gulyabani by Gürcan Keltek

BEST CANADIAN SHORT OR MEDIUM-LENGTH FILM presented by Télé-Québec

Zagros by Ariane Lorrain and Shahab Mihandoust

The jury for the Canadian and International short and medium-length competitions was composed of Kalina Bertin, Tijana Djukic and Eric Hynes.

PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD, presented by TV5

Memory is Our Homeland by Jonathan Durand

MAGNUS ISACSSON AWARD

And with a Smile, the Revolution by Alexandre Chartrand

The jury for the Magnus Isacsson Award was composed of Jocelyne Clarke, Martin Frigon (ARRQ), Viviane Saglier (Cinema Politica), Frederic Bohbot (DOC Québec) and Richard Brouillette (Main Film).

STUDENTS’ AWARD presented by Desjardins

20-22 OMEGA by Thierry Loa

The jury for the Students’ Award was composed of Loïc Piché (Collège de Maisonneuve), Florence Frigon-Morin (Cégep Marie-Victorin), Julia Bonis Charancle (Collège Dawson), Maika Hearson (Cégep André-Laurendeau), Solène Côté (Collège de Maisonneuve) and Roxana Baloiu (Collège Dawson).

WOMEN INMATES’ AWARD

A Delicate Balance by Christine Chevarie-Lessard

The Women Inmates’ jury is composed of five inmates of the Joliette Institution. Claudia, Isabelle, Marie-Ève, Nicole and Roseline chose a winner from a selection of eight films from the official competition and Panorama. This initiative, implemented for the first time in Québec for the RIDM 2011 edition, is made in partnership with the Société Elizabeth Fry du Québec, the Entente sur le développement culturel de Montréal – project supported by the ministère de la Culture et des communications and Ville de Montréal.

Additional screening!

The RIDM is pleased to announce that there will be an additional screening of Hale County This Morning, This Evening by RaMell Ross. The film, which just won the Grand Prize for best international feature, will be screened this Sunday, November 18 at 9 p.m. in the Salle Canal D of the Cinémathèque québécoise.

FFM 2017: My prediction for best film – Y de Pronto el Amanecer

Chilean director Silvio Caiozzi, right, instructs child actors in his film Y de Pronto el Amanecer (And The the Dawn.) The film ran in competition at the 2017 Montreal World Film Festival / Festival des film du monde. The winner will be announced tonight, Monday, Sept. 4, 2017.

UPDATE: Y de Pronto el Amanecer did indeed win the Grand Prix of the Americas, for Best Film.

I predict that Y de Pronto el Amanecer (And Then the Dawn) will win the competition for best film at the 2017 Montreal World Film Festival / Festival des film du monde tonight.

I did not even see all the films in competition, but I really liked The Hidden Sword, from China; Upstream, from Taiwan, was very well done, and friends who saw it told me Anna Karenina: Vronsky’s story was spectacular.

Given all that, it might be rash to predict a win for Y de Pronto el Amanecer, but the story, the acting and the scenery in this Chilean film from director Silvio Caiozzi were all so very impressive. The film is 195 minutes long, but I was never bored for even one second.

A few hours from now I’ll either be saying “Ooops!” or “I told you so!”

The awards ceremony will be at 7 p.m., at the Imperial Cinema, 1430 Bleury St. When it is over, at approximately 7:30 (so I am told) there will be a free, closing film. The name of the closing film will only be announced at the ceremony.

These are the films in competition:

41ST MONTREAL WORLD FILM FESTIVAL
18 films in WORLD COMPETITION

A PROMINENT PATIENT / MASARYK by Julius Ševcík (Czech Republic / Slovakia)
100min; anglais s.t.f & s.t.a

AND SUDDENLY THE DAWN / Y DE PRONTO EL AMANECER by Silvio Caiozzi (Chile)
195min; espagnol s.t.f & s.t.a

ANNA KARENINA. VRONSKY’S STORY / ANNA KARENINA. ISTORIYA VRONSKOGO by Karen Shakhnazarov (Russia)
138min; russe s.t.f & s.t.a

APPENDIX by Hossein Namazi (Iran)
83min; farsi s.t.f & s.t.a

CARDINAL X by Angie Wang (USA)
98 min; anglais s.t.f

DEAR ETRANGER / OSANAGO WARERA NI UMARE by Yukiko Mishima (Japan)
127min; japonais s.t.f & s.t.a

ELVIS WALKS HOME by Fatmir Koçi (Albania / UK)
94min; anglais s.t.f

FALLING IN /OUT OF LOVE by Dominic Bachy (France)
95min; français s.t.a

FOOTPRINTS by Wong Wai (Hong Kong, China)
120min; mandarin s.t.f & s.t.a

FROZEN IGNAT / CINE A UCIS CRACIUNUL? by Dinu Tãnase (Romania)
81min; roumain s.t.f & s.t.a

PATH OF MARYAM by Atia Aldaraji (Iraq / Germany)
76min; arabe s.t.f & s.t.a

RECONCILIATION / ZGODA by Maciej Sobieszczanski (Poland)
87min; polonais s.t.f & s.t.a

SAYAKBAY – HOMER OF 20TH CENTURY by Ernest Abdyjaparov (Kyrgyzstan)
82min; kyrgyz s.t.f & s.t.a

THE BASICS OF KILLING / DRUŽINICA by Jan Cvitkovic (Slovenia / Serbia)
99min; slovène s.t.f & s.t.a

THE HIDDEN SWORD by Xu Haofeng (China)
137min; chinois s.t.f & s.t.a

UNAWARE CONTROL / HUA SE by Xiaoyan Xu (China)
94min; chinois s.t.f & s.t.a

UNSUNG HEROES / NOI ERAVAMO by Leonardo Tiberi (Italy)
90min; italien s.t.f & s.t.a

UPSTREAM by David Chuang (Taiwan)
80min; mandarin s.t.f & s.t.a

The Awards Ceremony for the Montreal World Film Festival / Festival des film du monde will be at 7 pm. Monday, Sept 4, 2017, at the Imperial Cinema, 1430 Bleury St. When the ceremony is over, around 7:30, there will be a free closing film.

I saw Guillermo del Toro three times on Friday – thanks Fantasia!

Director Guillermo del Toro with his Cheval Noir Award at the Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, Friday, July 15, 2016. The smiling guy behind Del Toro is festival programmer Mitch Davis. (Liz Ferguson photo)
Director Guillermo del Toro with his Cheval Noir Award at the Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, Friday, July 15, 2016. The smiling guy behind Del Toro is festival programmer Mitch Davis. (Liz Ferguson photo)

On Friday afternoon, July 15, 2016, director Guillermo del Toro spoke with Fantasia Film Festival programmer Tony Timpone at a press conference where he also took questions from fans who are journalists, film profs, etc. Clearly, they were there because they wanted to hear his stories, not to do a job.

Del Toro is passionate about films, monsters, and his work. He’s really funny, too. (Not exactly news to those who are already his fans!)

Friday evening, Del Toro was given Fantasia’s Cheval Noir Award; then he appeared onscreen in the (excellent) documentary Creature Designers: The Frankenstein Complex, then he returned, again with Timpone, to share more insights and answer more questions.

I’ll post more details about his talks later, but here’s one of the things I particularly liked: Del Toro makes lots of Twitter posts about many kinds of art, but he only makes positive remarks, he doesn’t believe in tearing people or things down. He doesn’t mind criticizing politicians, though. (He tweets as @RealGDT.)

Sounds good to me!

Visit the Fantasia Film Festival web site to learn more about this year’s films and guests.