Huelva Awards: Top Prize Goes to Angeles Cruz’s ‘Valentina or the Serenity,’ About a Young Indigenous Girl Processing Her Father’s Death
19.11.2023 - 14:01
Angeles Cruz’s “Valentina or the Serenity” walked off Saturday night with the top best picture award and best actress (Myriam Bravo) in a high-caliber main competition at this year’s Huelva Ibero-American Film Festival. Best actor went to “Money Heist’s” Rodolfo de la Serna, for his weighty turn in Paramount Television Intl. Studios’ “The Rescue.” Cruz’s win underscored the focus and value of Huelva.
Despite funding challenges, Latin America’s big three – Mexico, Brazil and Argentina – alone produced 660 features in 2022. It is simply impossible for the media to pay sufficient attention to all but a highly select clutch of top titles. “Ibero-American cinema is constantly evolving.
Now, it is very easy to find great films, if not in budgetary terms, then in artistic ambitions,” Huelva director Manuel H. Martin told Variety in the run-up to the festival. “Valentina,” played Toronto and Mexico.
Despite that, it deserves far more attention. Titles, moreover, buck cliché and expectations. “Valentina” turns on a young Mixtec girl’s attempt to process her father’s death, which runs from guilt and denial to final remembrance.
Critics’ consensus, to the extent that it has received reviews, is that the final effect is an entertaining film. Huelva’s Audience Award winner “La Suprema,” from Colombia’s Felipe Holguín, is set in a dirt poor hamlet off the Caribbean coast. That said, it delivers a heart warming ode to community solidarity as the villagers rally round to fufill a long girl’s dream.
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