/ News

The Aurora Award goes to Elisabeth Marjanovic Cronvall’s short film Lizard Brain (Reptilhjärnan). All the competition winners will be screened at Helsinki International Film Festival on Saturday, September 23rd.

The R&A Shorts jury has decided the winners of this year’s National Competition. The Swedish-Finnish co-production Lizard Brain takes the main prize of the festival. The film tells about a successful life coach who is invited to a job coaching company to inspire the unemployed.

We award the prize to a film that deals with its always topical subject both subtly and exhilaratingly cheekily. The film’s acting work deserves special thanks because every role, regardless of size, was carefully cast and acted first-rate. The main role is skillfully written as a multi-layered person who, despite his unsympathetic behavior, the viewer also understands and feels sorry for. 

The Aurora Award is a cash prize of 2,000 euros sponsored by Aurora Studios and Finnish Impact Film Fund.

The winner of the Finnish Film Foundation’s Uusi aalto Award is Karoliina Gröndahl’s short documentary Every Tom, Dick and Urpo. According to the jury, the film is much more about humanity than one would think at first glance. Uusi aalto Award is 1 500 euro aimed at supporting the professional career of a promising new filmmaker working in the short film format.

The third ever Moving People and Images Award goes to Iiti Yli-Harja’s documentary short Blush – An Extraordinary Voyage, which poignantly brings out the anxiety of a young person in relation to being different. The award is 1 000 euro for the development of the filmmaker’s next project.

The winner of the Best Student Film Award is Arman Zafari’s Prelude. The jury thanks the film for dealing with school bullying from the point of view of the bully’s parent and making the viewer wonder if one’s own child can be capable of a violent act? The Best Student Film Award is an accreditation to the 2024 HIFF – Love & Anarchy festival and The Finnish Film Affair industry event.

The jury also gives an honourable mention to Tuukka Kovasiipi’s short documentary Jouko which takes the viewer, along with the main character, deep into the world of people left outside of our society and evokes human compassion, making the viewer open their eyes to those we pass by every day.

In addition to the jury’s awards, the R&A Shorts audience has voted for their favourite. The Audience Award goes to Fabian Munsterhjelm’s short film Thank You in Your Language. The Audience Award is an equipment rental gift card for Kino Rentals, worth 1 000 euro.

The winners of the competition were selected by the jury consisting of director Emilia Hernesniemi, actor-screenwriter Eeva Putro and director Mazdak Nassir.

All six winners will be shown at the NATIONAL COMPETITION WINNERS screening on Saturday 23rd at 1 pm at Maxim 1.