Korean film ‘Jiseul’ wins drama prize at Sundance

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Korean film ‘Jiseul’ wins drama prize at Sundance

PARK CITY, Utah - In the world cinema categories of the Sundance Film Festival, Korean drama “Jiseul” picked up the grand jury drama prize on Saturday. The film, directed by O Muel, follows the residents of a small town who were forced to hide in a cave for 60 days after the military attacked.

“A River Changes Course,” a Cambodian documentary about three young Cambodians struggling with adversity in a country ravaged by war and debt, picked up the world cinema grand jury award.

“Events like these really bring our communities together to share in the beauty of the world and the beauty of our future,” said director Kalyanee Mam said.

“Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer,” which follows the three members of a Russian feminist punk band jailed for performing a “punk prayer” in a Russian Orthodox church, picked up the special jury prize in the world documentary category.

In the United States cinema categories, the drama “Fruitvale” and documentary “Blood Brothers” won top awards, giving them a boost to reach independent movie audiences.

“Fruitvale,” starring Octavia Spencer and Michael B. Jordan and directed by 26-year-old first-time filmmaker Ryan Coogler, picked was honored for its “moral and social urgency.”

The film is based on the true story of 22-year-old Oscar Grant, who was killed by police in Oakland, California, on New Year’s Eve in 2008 and whose death sparked riots against police brutality.

Movie studio the Weinstein Company purchased distribution rights for the film.

“This film had a profound impact on the audience that saw it .?.?. this award goes out to my home in the Bay Area where Oscar Grant breathed, slept, loved, had fun and survived for 22 years,” Coogler said in his acceptance speech.

Oscar-winning documentarian Davis Guggenheim awarded the United States documentary jury prize to “Blood Brothers,” saying it shook the voting panel to its core.

The documentary follows an American man who moves to Africa and works with children suffering from HIV at an orphanage. Through his work, the children gain a voice.

“It is so encouraging for the kids .?.?. their lives are so encouraging, and they die and no one remembers their names .?.?. To take their story so that everyone sees it, it’s so awesome,” said director Steve Hoover.

Young actress Shailene Woodley, praised for her performance in “The Descendants” last year, and her co-star Miles Teller won the Special Jury acting prize in “The Spectacular Now.”

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