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The Feeling That the Time for Doing Something Has Passed Among Top Winners at Montclair Film Festival

Joanna Arnow’s droll dark comedy The Feeling That the Time for Doing Something Has Passed, about a woman caught in a series of sadomasochistic relationships and a dead-end job, won the Montclair Film Festival’s prize for early-career filmmakers, while Radu Jude’s Do Not Expect Too Much From the End of the World, a comedy about the making of a workplace-safety video, won the festival’s Fiction Feature Prize.

Four Daughters, a Tunisian documentary by Kaouther Ben Hania in which the director enlists two actors to play two of a mother’s missing daughters, was awarded the main documentary prize.

The festival, held October 20-29 in lovely Montclair, an artistically focused town a short commute from New York City, focused on daring and provocative films perfect for an audience excited to learn and be challenged. Film fans packed houses to watch nature documentaries, tense documentaries and boundary-pushing comedies, among other films, in a film-nurturing community speckled with gelato shops and fitness studios.

The Montclair Film Festival co-founders are Evelyn McGee Colbert, president of the board of directors of the nonprofit Montclair Film, and WNET-TV executive Bob Feinberg — and McGee Colbert enlisted her husband, Stephen, for one of the highlights of the festival, a conversation with Martin Scorsese at the gorgeous New Jersey Performing Arts Center in nearby Newark.

“The work of this year’s festival filmmakers proves once again that cinema is thriving as an
art form,” said Montclair Film artistic director and co-head Tom Hall. “We could not be more honored to have been able to share each and every one of the films in our program, and we extend our immense gratitude to all of the filmmakers whose work made this year’s Montclair Film Festival a success.”

More Montclair Film Festival Award Winners

In addition to awarding the festival’s Fiction Feature Prize to Do Not Expect Too Much From the End of the World, jurors in the category gave a Special Jury Prize for Direction to Lila Avilés for Totem.

The Fiction Feature Competition also featured La Chimera, directed by Alice Rohrwacher, Evil Does Not Exist, directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi, and Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell, directed by Phạm Thiên Ân.

The Fiction jury was composed of Clayton Davis (Variety), Kate McEdwards (Track Shot), and Alison Willmore (New York Magazine, Vulture). They also chose “The Pedestrian,” directed by Nora DeLigter and Claire Read, as the winner of the festival’s Fiction Short Film Competition.

Four Daughters, a captivating and provocative study of religious and gendered expectations, was awarded the festival’s Bruce Sinofsky Award for the Documentary Feature Competition, the festival’s documentary
competition prize. A Special Jury Prize for Excellence in Documentary Editing went to Pianoforte, directed by Jakub Piatek.

Four Daughters, by Kaouther Ben Hania, documentary winner at the Montclair Film Festival.

The Documentary Feature Competition also featured On the Adamant, directed by Nicolas Philibert, Queendom, directed by Agniia Galdanova, and Rule of Two Walls, directed by David Gutnik.

The Documentary Feature Competition Jury and Non-Fiction Shorts jury was composed of Sam Adams (Slate), Greg Bousted (Sandbox Films) and Joe McGovern (The Wrap).

Winning the Future/Now Competition meant that The Feeling That the Time for Doing Something Has Passed also won the $5,000 The Mark Urman Award For Fiction Filmmaking, honoring early career filmmakers. The award was established in 2019 in memory of the film distribution executive Mark Urman, a longtime Montclair resident, and funded through Montclair Film’s Mark Urman Award Fund.

Additionally, Playland, director Georden West’s stunning exploration of the lifetime of a beloved queer bar in Boston, was awarded a Special Jury Prize by the Future/Now jury for Daring Visual Splendor.

The Future/Now Competition also featured The Featherweight, directed by Rob Kolodny, Free Time, directed by Ryan Martin Brown, and Pet Shop Days, directed by Olmo Schnabel.

The Future/Now jury was composed of Lisa Macabasco (Vogue), filmmaker Miles Warren (whose excellent debut, Bruiser, is now on Hulu), and your humble correspondent, Tim Molloy of Moviemaker

Meanwhile, Tell Them You Love Me, directed by Nick August-Perna, earned the New Jersey Films
Competition prize. The New Jersey Feature Competition also featured Jesszilla, directed by Emily Sheskin, Lead and Copper, directed by William Ha, Scream of My Blood: A Gogol Bordello Story, directed by Nate Pommer & Eric Weinrib, and You Were My First Boyfriend, directed by Cecilia Aldarondo and Sarah Enid Hagey.

“Pushover,” directed by Brian Lederman, won the festival’s New Jersey Shorts competition.
The Competition featured films in the fiction and non-fiction categories from New Jersey.

The New Jersey Films Competition jury was composed of filmmaker Julie Cohen, Georgette Gilmore (Montclair Local), Kase Wickman (Vanity Fair).

The Audience Award for Fiction Feature was awarded to The Holdovers, directed by Alexander Payne, while the Audience Award for Documentary Feature was awarded to American Symphony, directed by Matthew Heineman. The Audience Award for World Cinema was awarded to The Taste of Things, directed
by Trân Anh Hùng.

The Audience Award for Short Film was awarded to “Outsider,” directed by Ted Haimes.

Montclair Film Festival Junior Jury

Each year, The Montclair Film Festival welcomes our Junior Jury, made up of fifteen area high school students representing twelve area schools. The Junior Jury awarded their top prize to Perfect Days, directed by Wim Wenders. Award for Andrew Haigh for Screenwriting for All of Us Strangers. The Junior Jury also awarded a Special Jury Award for for Andrew Haigh for Screenwriting for All of Us Strangers.

The 2023 Montclair Film Festival Junior Jury participants were May Bahoora (Columbia High), Faith Brolly (Verona High), Sabrina Camacho (Donald M. Payne High), Nicholas Giordano (Pascack Valley HIgh), Amadis Gonzalez (Passaic High), Caitlyn Huang (Hanover {Park High), Willow Killebrew (Montclair Kimberly Academy), Sylvia Koenig (Montclair High), Emile La Morte (High Tech High), Elisabeth Rose Powell (Montclair High), Robbie Rechtschaffer (Montclair High), Jason Simon (Glen Rock High), Lex Stipanov (Green Meadow Waldorf School), Michael Trinidad (Passaic High), and Trey Wakeshima (West Essex High).

Main image: The Feeling That the Time for Doing Something Has Passed, Future/Now winner at the Montclair Film Festival. The Feeling That the Time for Doing Something Has Passed Among Top Winners at Montclair Film Festival

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