Wild Roots, the debut feature from Hungarian director Hajni Kis, has won Hungary’s top cinema honor, the Hungarian Motion Picture Award for best film.
The low-key family drama featuring non-professional actors, which follows a 12-year-old girl (Zorka Horváth) who seeks out her father, a violent ex-con (played by former martial-arts champion Gusztáv Dietz), also won the best screenplay and the best first feature awards at the ceremony held Sunday night at the Veszprém Petőfi Theatre in western Hungary.
Wild Roots premiered at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival last year and also screened at the Tallinn and Santa Barbara festivals.
Veteran Hungarian filmmaker Ildikó Enyedi won best director honors for The Story of My Wife, a literary adaptation starring Léa Seydoux, Louis Garrel and Dutch newcomer Gijs Naber. The film, which premiered in Cannes competition last year, took home four other Hungarian Motion Picture honors in technical categories, including for best cinematography, make-up, costume, and editing.
Other winners included Gabriella Hámori, who got the best actress award for her starring performance in Nándor Lőrincz and Bálint Nagy’s drama As Far As I Know, which examines a married couple’s response after the wife is raped. János Kulka won best actor for Péter Fazakas’ The Game, a thriller set among the secret police in 1960s Budapest.
The best television series honor went to Shakespeare/37 – Montague & Capulet, directed by László Magács and produced by Tamás Csutak, part of an avant-garde project to re-interpret all of Shakespeare’s dramas.
The awards ceremony was the closing event of the Hungarian Motion Picture Festival, a week-long celebration of Hungarian cinema, which was held June 9-12 in the picturesque cities of Veszprém, Balatonfüred and Balatonalmádi on Lake Balaton.