Germans laud Shopping
Kapiti film Shopping has claimed a Grand Prix at the Berlin International Film Festival.
Written and directed by Kapiti-raised duo Mark Albiston and Louis Sutherland, the film beat about 13 others in the Generation 14+ international section at last week's festival.
Sutherland said the win came as a surprise, after missing out at last month's Sundance Film Festival in Utah in the United States.
"Out of the 12 entries [at Sundance] they gave about 11 and a half awards," he said.
"If there had been a prize for dodging awards we would have won that one. But it was really nice to be recognised in Germany. While there we had people coming up and gushing about the film."
The duo received great feedback from the jury for their "extremely compelling first film", noting the film's "sharp editing, strong visual choices and a complex, painful and loving portrayal of family".
The jury also acknowledged Kapiti roofer Kevin Paulo as a "fantastic lead actor.
"We loved watching him on screen and felt a deep empathy with him," the jury noted in its comments.
Shopping tells the story of brothers Willie and Solomon growing up in 1981 Kapiti surrounded by muscle cars, racial tensions and a thieving bird.
After a chance encounter with charismatic thief Bennie, Willie is introduced to a close- knit gang of 'shoppers', shoplifters, and a criminal world that allows him to escape the mounting tension at home.
Shopping is Albiston and Sutherland's first feature film, but follows award-winning short films, The Six Dollar Fifty Man and Run, both of which earned a special distinction at the Festival De Cannes in France in 2007 and 2009.
The Six Dollar Fifty Man has won nearly 40 international film awards including best international short film at the Sundance Film Festival in 2010.
The pair celebrated the win with Shopping cast and crew members in Peter Jackson's Park Road post production facility in Miramar on Wednesday. There they screened the film, which they were unable to do before their trip to Sundance and the Berlin International Film Festival.
The pair have four film ideas planned post-Shopping said Albiston, who has started work on their next film, being set on the Kapiti Coast.
Filming on the new project is expected to start in 2015, he said.
Shopping will screen in New Zealand during the mid- year.