The 71st Edinburgh International Film Festival (EIFF) wrapped last night with the closing gala screening of Morrissey biopic England is Mine and closing party at the Playfair Library.
The World Premiere of the unauthorised depiction of Morrissey’s early career, set in Manchester, the screening was attended by cast and crew from the film on the red carpet. Among attendees was Jack Lowden who plays Morrissey (pictured above, 5th from left), co-star Jessica Brown Findlay (6th from left), and director Mark Gill (7th from left). Singer Susan Boyle was among those in the audience.
At the screening, Just Charlie was announced as the winner of the Audience Award. The drama, directed by Rebekah Fortune, tells of a young football star called Charlie (Harry Gilby) dealing with a gender identity crisis and the family rifts it causes.
This year’s Festival saw a total of 151 features from 46 countries.
This year’s winner of the prestigious Michael Powell Award for Best British Feature Film went to British filmmaker Francis Lee’s directorial debut, God’s Own Country. Dubbed Britain’s Brokeback Mountain for the central romantic, this was the film’s UK Premiere at the Festival.
The Michael Powell Jury which comprised of composer David Arnold, Rotterdam Film Festival Director Bero Beyer, and screenwriter Andrea Gibb praised God’s Own Country for “an authenticity that is both tender and brutal, a juxtaposition of landscape and emotion, which explores the question of what it means to be a man.”
Actresses Emily Beecham in Daphne and Anne Reid in Kaleidoscope and Romans, were joint winners of the award for Best Performance in a British Feature Film.
The award for Best International Feature Film went to Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov’s Glory, described by the Jury as:
“Deftly acted, beautifully photographed and directed, we loved this film. The subtlety of the performances and the story-telling was defined with such a lightness of touch which led to the immoral and moral choices having a heavy impact on this Jury.”
The Best Documentary Feature Film went to Chico Pereira’s contemplative Donkeyote, which studied Pereira’s uncle whose wonderful spirit of adventure belies all of his 73 years. Special mention was given to Thomas Riedelsheimer’s Leaning Into The Wind, his sequel to Rivers and Tides, looking at the work of Scots environmental artist Andy Goldsworthy.
The award for Best Short Film went to The Full Story, directed by Daisy Jacobs, with Kevin Pickering’s Close to the Bone and Gordon Napier’s 1745 receiving a special mention from the jurors.
Paloma Baeza’s Poles Apart won the McLaren Award for Best British Animation by audience vote.
Finally, the winner of this year’s EIFF Works in Progress and recipient of the £2,500 award was Piano to Zanskar by Michal Sulima. The project was selected from a field of 10 projects that took part in a one-day industry pitching event.
“Given that our film has been entirely self-funded, it will go a long way towards helping us reach completion,” said Sulima.