“The Snow Calls” crowned best at Big Sky Documentary Film Festival
Art and Experience:
Iranian filmmaker Marjan Khosravi’s “The Snow Calls” has been selected as best feature at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival in Missoula in the northwestern U.S. state of Montana.
The film centers on Mina who, after bearing three daughters, has just one more chance; her next child has to be a boy or her husband will marry another woman.
That’s the tradition. The very pregnant Mina and her family live in southwestern Iran, where the rules of the Bakhtiari tribe apply. This time, the expectant mother decides not to have an ultrasound scan, for fear of the result and the gossip that would ensue. She is already under enough pressure from her in-laws, although she does still have people on her side, too.
“This film depicts community and family with an intimacy rarely seen on the big screen, and it uses cinema to amplify voices that absolutely need to be heard,” the jury wrote in a statement published on the closing day of the festival on Sunday.
The award for best artistic vision in this section went to “Il Mio Corpo”, a co-production between Switzerland and Italy directed by Michele Pennetta.
“We recognize this film’s bold aesthetic approach which, through both close-ups and nimble movement, evokes the drama and emotion of social realist storytelling. It demonstrates an intimacy with its subjects that can only be achieved through sustained and deliberate collaboration,” the jury said.
“Red Heaven” by Lauren DeFilippo and Katherine Gorringe from the USA won the Big Sky Award in a special category for the films that artistically honor the character, history, tradition and imagination of the American West.
The artistic vision award in this section was given to “Victoria” by Sofie Benoot, Liesbeth De Ceulaer and Isabelle Tollenaere from Belgium.
“Meltdown in Dixie” by Emily Harrold from the USA was named best short documentary.
In the Mini-Doc Competition, the winner was “Eagles”, a co-production between Canada and the USA co-directed by Kristy Guevara-Flanagan and Maite Zubiaurre.
The artistic vision award in the Mini-DOC Competition went to “The Roots Weaver” by Fernando Saldivia from Chile.
“A Horse Has More Blood Than a Human” by Abolfazl Taluni, “Khoniyar’s Children” by Arman Qolipur Dashtaki and “Holy Bread” by Rahim Zabihi were other Iranian films screened at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, however, they failed to garner any award.
The event is organized every year by the Big Sky Film Institute to support the people who create documentary films, vibrant events, and expand knowledge and conversation around issues that matter.