Eliza Hittman’s “Never Rarely Sometimes Always” won the top prize at Mexico’s Los Cabos Film Festival, adding the award to a brace of trophies dating back this year to a Silver Bear at Berlin and the U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award in Sundance.
Tipped as a contender in 2021’s Oscar race, teen drama “Never Rarely Sometimes Always” was hailed by Variety as a “quietly devastating gem,” “both of a piece with, and a significant step forward from” Hittman’s prior youth-in-crisis works “Beach Rats” and “It Felt Like Love.”
Mexican writer-director Bruno Santamaría Razo’s “Things We Dare Not Do” won Los Cabos Film Festival Cinecolor-Shalalá Award. The second doc feature from Bruno Santamaría Razo whose debut “Margarita” won a Mezcal Prize special mention at the 2016 Guadalajara Festival, “Things We Dare Not Do,” sits on the borderlands between documentary and fiction, it tells the story of a gay teen’s life in a Mexican village ravaged by homophobia and homicide; which makes his decision to come out to his parents all the more courageous and affecting.
Santamaría’s film has so far won best documentary at the Chicago Festival and Chile’s Viña del Mar Festival among other kudos. A U.S.-Mexico-Azerbaijan co-production, “In Between Dying,” directed by Hilal Baydarov scooped an Art Kingdom Award. Produced by Baydarov and Elshan Abbasov, co-produced by celebrated Mexican director Carlos Reygadas, “Dying” is executive produced by Danny Glover. A dream parable, which premiered in Venice, it charts an existential journey of a serial killer through Azerbaijani landscapes.
The feature debut of New York-based Xavier J. Velasco, “The Eye of the Days” nabbed the best project CTT Exp & Rentals Award for a mystery thriller about a man who stumbles on a manuscript that depicts events from his own past life.
Other industry awards went to Carlos Lenin’s “Dios y la cumbia del Diablo” and “Las Hostilidades,” by M. Sebastian Molina. “Diablo” tracks an accordionist who sells his soul to the Devil, a hitman who loves cumbia. Doc feature “Hostilidades” depicts a family living in a small village regarded as one of the most dangerous places in Mexico, once again Los Cabos Film Festival has been a sucess even when the COVID19 pandemics has affected this and other .