Latin American Cinema Leads DOXA Winners

The Creator of Universes

By Pat Mullen

Mercedes Dominioni’s The Creator of Universes was the big winner at this year’s DOXA Documentary Festival. The Uruguayan film won the feature documentary prize at the Vancouver festival in the awards handed out over the weekend. The film tells the offbeat and bittersweet story of Juan, a 16-year-old boy with Asperger syndrome, and his ailing grandmother who bond while creating telenovelas. The film had its North American premiere at DOXA.

It was a good year for Latin American cinema at DOXA since Laura Bari’s Canadian-Argentine co-production Primas scooped the Colin Low Award for Canadian Documentary. The film is the story of cousins RocĂ­o and Aldana, both survivors of sexual violence, who move to Montreal from Argentina and heal their scars through art. Primas previously screened at Montreal’s RIDM where it scored an honourable mention in the Canadian feature documentary award category and at Toronto’s Hot Docs where it finished 12th in the overall audience award rankings and 4th in the Canadian rankings. (Read more about Primas in ‘Docs and #MeToo’ in the current issue of POV)

Awards were announced this weekend ahead of DOXA’s closing night selection of Kusama – Infinity.

This year’s DOXA winners are:

DOXA Feature Documentary Award: The Creator of Universes – Mercedes Dominioni (Uruguay)
Honourable mention: Distant Constellation – Shevaun Mizrahi (US/Turkey/Netherlands)

DOXA Short Documentary Award: Crisanto Street – Paloma Martinez (USA)
Honourable mention: Nuuca – Michelle Latimer (Canada/US)

Colin Low Award for Canadian Documentary: Primas – Laura Bari (Canada/Argentina)
Honourable mention: Those Who Come, Will Hear – Simon Plouffe (Canada)

Nigel Moore Award for Youth Programming: Minding the Gap – Bing Liu (USA)
Honourable mention: Butterfly Monument – Jules Koostachin & Rick Miller (Canada)