Arts & Entertainment

Alcarràs wins top Berlinale prize, ‘writes a page in history of cinema’

Berlin, Feb 17 (EFE).- The portrayal of a family of peach farmers in rural Catalonia won hearts at the Berlin International Film Festival, where it came away with the coveted Golden Bear for Best Film.

Alcarràs, Spanish director Carla Simón’s second feature film, tells the story of traditional Catalan farmers pushing back against a bid to install a solar farm on their family orchard.

“It’s like writing a page in the history of cinema,” Giovanni Pompili, head of the film’s co-producer Kino Produzioni, tells Efe about Alcarràs, whose story melds tenderness and anger.

“The film is so subtle, so beautiful and so strong at the same time,” Pompili says, adding Simón’s work is “impressive.”

The film cast some 9,000 people and used amateur actors who, after months of workshops, started to feel like a real family, Pompili says.

“Carla is a very special director.”

The Berlinale jury, chaired by Indian-American director M. Night Shyamalan, praised the film for its “extraordinary interpretative capacity” and ability to combine “tenderness and comedy.”

It is the second award Simón has won at the Berlinale. In 2017, she won the Best Debut Feature Film award for Estiu 1993.

It is also the first Catalan language film to be awarded the Golden Bear.

This year’s 72nd edition of the Berlinale was held with a reduced capacity due to the pandemic after last year’s event was held virtually. EFE

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