‘Strong Island’ Tops Cinema Eye Honors

Strong Island

By Pat Mullen

Yance Ford’s Strong Island dominated the Cinema Eye Honors last night. The Netflix doc scooped three awards including the top prize for best documentary and an award for Ford’s direction. The film previously won the Gotham Award for Best Documentary and is one of fifteen features on the Oscar shortlist. Strong Island is Ford’s personal inquiry into the 1992 murder of his brother William and the larger context of race and violence in the USA.

Brett Morgen’s Jane also came out strong with two trophies including the audience award, but the archival doc surprisingly missed the editing prize despite cutting together over 100 hours of footage. That award went to Quest.

Fellow Oscar shortlisted docs Chasing Coral, Last Men Aleppo, and Long Strange Trip each took home one award.

The list of winners is as follows:

Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction Feature Filmmaking
Strong Island

Outstanding Achievement in Direction:
Yance Ford, Strong Island

Best Feature Debut
Yance Ford, Strong Island

Outstanding Achievement in Editing
Lindsay Utz, Quest

Outstanding Achievement in Production
Kareem Abeed, Stefan Kloos and Søren Steen Jespersen, Last Men in Aleppo

Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography
Andrew Ackerman and Jeff Orlowski, Chasing Coral

Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Score
Philip Glass, Jane

Outstanding Achievement in Graphic Design or Animation
Long Strange Trip, Stefan Nadelman

Audience Choice Prize

Outstanding Achievement in Broadcast Nonfiction Filmmaking
The Keepers, Ryan White

Spotlight Award
Lots of Kids, a Monkey and a Castle

Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction Short Filmmaking
The Rabbit Hunt, Patrick Bresnan

The Unforgettables (Non-competitive Honor, previously announced)
The year’s most notable and significant nonfiction film subjects

Chanterelle Sung, Hwei Lin Sung, Jill Sung, Thomas Sung & Vera Sung, Abacus: Small Enough to Jail
Bobbi Jene Smith, Bobbi Jene
Abdalaziz Alhamza, Hamoud Almousa and Mohamad Almusari, City of Ghosts
Ola Kaczanowska, Communion
Dina Buno and Scott Levin, Dina
Dolores Huerta, Dolores
Agnès Varda, Faces Places
Daje Shelton, For Ahkeem
Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov, Icarus
Dr. Jane Goodall, Jane
Jim Carrey, Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond
Christine’a Rainey, Christopher “Quest” Rainey, PJ Rainey and William Withers, Quest
Yance Ford, Strong Island
Jennifer Brea, Unrest
Brian, Charles, Chris, Dark Cloud, Kiki and Vegas, The Work

Legacy Award
We Were Kings – Leon Gast