Drowning In Holy Water

FESTIVALS: ‘Drowning In Holy Water’ takes best film at MIFFEST Awards

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Iranian filmmaker Navid Mahmoudi’s Drowning In Holy Water was presented with the best film award at the fifth edition of the Malaysia Golden Global Awards. The film tells the story of a young couple trying to leave Afghanistan to live in Europe.

French-Canadian filmmaker Eric Gravel was awarded best director for Full Time, which also won best actress for Laure Calamy’s performance. She plays a woman whose attempts to reach a much-needed job interview are frustrated by strike action.

Child actors Arif Shaikh and Asik Shaikh were awarded best actors for their roles in Indian filmmaker Prasun Chatterjee’s Two Friends (Dostojee). Best supporting actor went to Korea’s Kim Hyun-bin for his role in Taiwanese drama The Silent Forest, while best supporting actress went to Afin Jahin Jaima for Iranian drama Rehana.

Among other winners, Muzzamer Rahman took the best screenplay award for Malaysian production Hail, Driver!, while Kavich Neang’s White Building won the New Hope Award (see full list of winners below).

The awards, which take place during the Malaysia International Film Festival (Miffest, July 10-15), also presented a Lifetime Achievement Award to Kim Dong-ho, co-founder of the Busan International Film Festival and Gangneung International Film Festival.

Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-Hsien was also presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award, which he was scheduled to receive in 2020, but unable to do so when the festival was cancelled due to the pandemic.

The awards accept contributions from directors who have made three or fewer feature films. This year’s jury comprised Indonesian actress Christine Hakim, Udine Far East Film Festival director Sabrina Baracetti, Filipino director Lav Diaz, and Malaysian filmmakers Ho Wi Ding and Chong Keat Aun.


Best Film: Drowning In Holy Water, dir: Navid Mahmoudi

Best Director: Eric Gravel, Full Time

Best Actor: Asik Shaikh, Arif Shaikh, Two Friends

Best Actress: Laure Calamy, Full Time

Best Supporting Actor: Kim Hyun-bin, The Silent Forest

Best Supporting Actress: Afin Jahin Jaima, Rehana

Best Cinematography: Lim Teck Siang, Whether The Weather Is Fine

Best Screenplay: Muzzamer Rahman, Hail, Driver!

New Hope Award: White Building, dir: Kavich Neang

Audience Choice Award: The Story Of Southern Islet

Lifetime Achievement Awards: Kim Dong-Ho, Hou Hsiao-Hsien