Tuesday, June 26, 2007
The Audience Award for Best Feature was given to Chris Kraus' Four Minutes, a German drama that follows the volatile relationship between a convicted killer and the older piano teacher who takes her on as a pupil. Vince DiPersio's Semper Fi: One Marine's Journey took home the Audience Award for Best Documentary. Screened at the Castro Theatre in front of an appreciative audience that included many lesbian and gay veterans of the Iraq War, Semper Fi traces the evolution of Lance Corporal Jeff Key, a patriotic gay marine stationed in Iraq who begins to question both the occupation and the policy of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." The highly charismatic Key graciously and humbly accepted the award on Closing Night. Frameline Completion Fund winner Pariah (Dir. Dee Rees), which centers on a black, butch lesbian teen struggling with self-doubt, guilt and familial rejection, garnered standing ovations when it closed the Fun In Girls' Shorts program at the Castro Theatre—and ultimately took home the Audience Award for Best Short Film.
The juried Frameline First Feature Award recognized Glue, Argentine director Alexis Dos Santos' richly poetic ode to budding adolescent sexuality. The jury consisted of three esteemed film industry representatives: writer/director Quentin Lee, the Founder and President of Margin Films; Sylvia Perel, the Founder and Director of San Francisco's International Latino Film Festival; and Rod Armstrong, Programming Associate at the San Francisco Film Society.
The Michael J. Berg Documentary Award, a $10,000 juried award recognizing the best documentary feature having its Bay Area premiere at the Festival, was given to Red Without Blue, Brooke Sebold, Benita Sills and Todd Sills' moving portrait of Mark and Clair, identical twins whose relationship must adapt when one of them transitions from male to female. All three directors, as well as Mark and Clair, were on hand to accept the award, a fitting follow-up to their Audience Award at this year's Slamdance Film Festival. The Documentary Award jury included Todd Holland, whose film The Believers won the Audience Award for Best Documentary at last year's Frameline; Michael Ehrenzweig of landmark queer film production company Telling Pictures (Paragraph 175); and 1993 Frameline Award Winner Pratibha Parmar, whose narrative feature debut, Nina's Heavenly Delights, screened at this year's festival.
Photos courtesy of Gustavo Fernández.