Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Cinema Eye Honors Announces 2015 Heterodox Award Nominees

The Cinema Eye Honors for Nonfiction Filmmaking today announced the five nominees for its annual Cinema Eye Heterodox Award, sponsored by Filmmaker Magazine, a publication of IFP. The Cinema Eye Heterodox Award honors a narrative fiction film that imaginatively incorporates nonfiction strategies, content and/or modes of production.

The five films nominated this year for the Cinema Eye Heterodox Award are:

Boyhood directed by Richard Linklater

Heaven Knows What directed by Josh and Benny Safdie

A Spell to Ward off the Darkness directed by Ben Rivers and Ben Russell

Stop the Pounding Heart directed by Roberto Minervini

Under the Skin directed by Jonathan Glazer

These films demonstrate the porous boundaries between life’s documentation and creative storytelling, highlighting the ways in which today’s fiction filmmakers are inspired, challenged and provoked by the realities in which their dramatic constructs live. This marks the fifth year for the Heterodox Award at Cinema Eye. Previous winners of the award were Matt Porterfield’s Putty Hill (2011), Mike Mills’ Beginners (2012), Jem Cohen’s Museum Hours (2013) and Carlos Reygados’s Post Tenebras Lux (2014).

“These nominees prove once again that the blurred lines between fiction/non-fiction, actor/non-actor and verite/script continue to thrill and provoke,” said Esther Robinson, Chair of the Cinema Eye Honors. “Year five of the Heterodox award gives us farmers, loners, aliens, addicts, and adolescents. The films ask thrillingly big questions about childhood, time, utopia, modernity, sexuality and what happens when you drop a come-hither Scarlett Johansson into the Scottish countryside with a hidden camera. “

“In this fifth year of the Heterodox Award,” said Filmmaker Magazine Editor-in-Chief Scott Macaulay, “these nominated filmmakers, using technology as varied as spy cams to old-fashioned 35mm, have created seamless blends of the real and ‘the real.’ Their films, crackling with the rhythms of life, offer inspirations out of the creative cul de sacs found in so much mainstream storytelling.”

Nine finalists for the Heterodox Award were selected in voting by the Cinema Eye Honors Nominations Committee, made up of more than 25 international programmers who specialize in nonfiction film. The nine finalists were then viewed and five nominees selected by the writers and editors of Filmmaker Magazine. A jury of filmmakers and film professionals will watch the five nominees and select a winner. The award will be presented in January during Cinema Eye Week in New York City.

In addition to the Heterodox Award nominees, Cinema Eye announced that voting for the organization’s Audience Choice Prize is now open. The ten contenders for the award were announced last month at CPH:DOX in Copenhagen and the annual list includes many of the most discussed, acclaimed and beloved films of the year. The nominees for the Audience Choice Prize are:

20,000 Days on Earth directed by Iain Forsythe and Jane Pollard

The Case Against 8 directed by Ben Cotner and Ryan White

Citizenfour directed by Laura Poitras

Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me directed by Chiemi Karasawa

Finding Vivian Maier directed by John Maloof and Charlie Siskel

Jodorowsky’s Dune directed by Frank Pavich

Keep On Keepin’ On directed by Alan Hicks

Life Itself directed by Steve James

Mistaken for Strangers directed by Tom Berninger

Particle Fever directed by Mark Levinson

Voting for the Audience Choice Prize is open to the public via the Cinema Eye website at:http://www.cinemaeyehonors.com/vote. Last year, more than 44,000 people voted for the award, which was won by Dave Grohl’s Sound City. Previous winners of the award are The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters (2008), Up the Yangtze (2009), The September Issue (2010), Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work (2011), Buck (2012) and Bully (2013).

Tickets for the 8th Annual Honors Awards Ceremony are now on sale. The event will be held Wednesday, January 7, 2015 at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, New York. Tickets can be purchased on the Cinema Eye website – www.cinemaeyehonors.com. More information about this year’s Cinema Eye Honors Week, including event details and a list of this year’s sponsors will be announced in the coming days.

The five nominees for the 2015 Cinema Eye Heterodox Award:

Under the Skin
Directed by Jonathan Glazer
The deconstructed star power of Scarlett Johannson is its own special effect in Jonathan Glazer’s eerily riveting tale of alienation and what it means to be human. Adapted from Michael Faber’s novel, Under the Skin lands a beautiful space alien wearing acid-washed jeans (Johannson) in the bustling urban areas and lonely stretches of Scotland, where she fatally beguiles a string of perfectly ordinary — and hidden camera-shot — men.

Rick Linklater
In his triumphant Boyhood, the story of a young boy’s journey to maturity, Linklater profoundly captures the poetics of passing time not with multiple actors and aging make-up but with the same cast, united yearly over the course of 12 years.

Stop the Pounding Heart
Roberto Minervini
Building his verite-styled narrative around the real lives of his non-actors, Roberto Minervini sensitively captures both the ache of adolescence as well attitudes and atmospheres of a devout farming community in rural Texas.

A Spell to Ward off the Darkness
Ben Rivers and Ben Russell
Gesturing both outside and inward, Ben Rivers and Ben Russell’s searching, experiential and politically questioning A Spell to Ward off the Darkness follows a single, nearly silent character as he interacts with a radical island collective, secludes himself in Finnish wilderness, and performs at a Norway black metal concert.

Heaven Knows What
Josh and Benny Safdie
Meeting the homeless and heroin-addicted 19-year-old Arielle Holmes on the streets while researching another film, Josh and Benny Safdie commissioned her to chronicle her life story — particularly her turbulent relationship with her boyfriend, Ilya. From those pages, and mixing professional actors like Caleb Landry Jones with Holmes and her friends, they have created a darkly compelling love story filled with pain and beauty.

Previously announced nominees for the 2015 Cinema Eye Honors:

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