´Zinzindurrunkarratz´, ‘Chinas’ and ‘Upon Entry’ triumph at the Festival du Cinéma Espagnol de Nantes

Euskara. Kultura. Mundura.


Basque cinema clinched awards at the 33rd Festival du Cinéma Espagnol de Nantes. A total of 25 Basque productions were screened at the festival. Among them, 13 feature films, one short film and 5 films from the Kimuak 2023 collection were featured in the Fenêtre Basque series dedicated to Basque cinema. Five films promoted by the Etxepare Basque Institute were in competitive categories, and three were winners.

Zinzindurrunkarratz´ (2023) by Oskar Alegría won the award for Best Documentary.

Zinzindurrunkarratz´ is the poetic diary of a trip down memory lane. Accompanied by an old Super 8 camera and a donkey called Paolo, the filmmaker follows the paths travelled by his ancestors to bring supplies to the last transhumant shepherd in the region. Through the mountains of Navarra, he collects silent images that portray an intimate collective memory. This film explores the role of sound in the construction of our recollections and our memory.

Alegria´s film has won several awards both nationally and internationally, such as Best Anthropological Film at the Festival dei Popoli in Florence (Italy, 2023), the Gian Paolo Paoli Award at the DOC New York Festival (USA, 2023) and the DOC Spain Award for Best Film at the Seminci Festival in Valladolid (Spain, 2023).

Chinas’ (2023) by Arantxa Echeverría won the Youth Jury Prize for Best Film.

In a Madrid primary school, the paths of two nine-year-old girls of Chinese descent intersect when one of them joins the school. While everything suggests that they will become friends, their meeting reveals that their integration in this foreign country has shaped them in very different ways.

The film received for nominations for the 2024 Goya Awards.

The Basque production ‘Upon Entry’, directed by Alejandro Rojas and Juan Sebastián Vázquez, won the Debut Film Award in the Premiers Films section.

Looking to start a new life in the United States, Diego and Elena leave Barcelona for New York. When they arrive at the airport, the Border Police stop them for questioning. Initially harmless, the agents´ questions become increasingly intimidating, subjecting the couple to a psychologically gruelling process of inspection and interrogation, in an attempt to discover if the couple have something to hide.

The film has won awards including Best Film at the Premiers Plans d´Angers Festival (France, 2024), the Crystal Simorgh Award for Best Director at the Fajr International Film Festival (Iran, 2024) and Best Screenplay at the Gaudí Awards (Spain, 2024), among others.

Two other Basque productions from the Fenêtre Basque section were also up for competition: ´Sobre todo de noche´ by Víctor Iriarte competed for Best Fiction Film and ´El rey de la semana´ by David Pérez Sañud, was in the running for Best Short Film.

Alongside the accolades earned by the films in the Fenêtre Basque section, the film ´O Corno´, directed by Basque filmmaker Jaione Camborda, was honoured with a Jules Verne Award - Special Mention.

The Fenêtre Basque (Basque Window) section, which takes place every year at the Festival du Cinéma Espagnol de Nantes, is one of the most extensive lineups of Basque films outside the Basque Country. Promoted by the Etxepare Basque Institute, Fenêtre Basque offers a selection of the year’s most notable Basque productions, as well as films by outstanding Basque filmmakers.

Etxepare Basque Institute and the festival

Nantes is among the European cities that have shown the most recognition and appreciation for Basque cinema. Now in its 23rd year, Fenêtre Basque has invited numerous Basque figures to Nantes to showcase their work and engage with the public. The Etxepare Basque Institute has sponsored the section dedicated to Basque films cinema since 2011. It is worth noting that Fenêtre Basque in Nantes longest-running showcase of Basque films outside the Basque Country.

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