La trente-deuxième saison

La Trente-Deuxième Saison, Madeleine Top Winners at Saguenay’s REGARD

Winners for the 27th REGARD - Saguenay International Film Festival

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The documentary La trente-deuxième saison (The Thirty-Second Season) leads the winners for the 2023 REGARD – Saguenay International Film Festival. Directed by Charles-Émile Lafrance, La trente-deuxième saison won the Canadian Grand Prize for its tender portrait of loss and loneliness as Lafrance observes his former neighbour, Normand, who confronts the death of his wife, Alexandra. The film receives a $5,000 cash prize donated by the University of Quebec at Chicoutimi and $25,000 in services at Grandé studios. Moreover, as the winner of the Canadian Grand Prize at REGARD, La trente-dieuxième saison may now qualify for the Academy Award provided it meets all other eligibility requirements. As the winner of the international Grand Prize, the dramatic short Natureza Humana by Mónica Lima now qualifies in the category for Best Live Action Short at the Oscars.

Several other documentaries won during the REGARD award ceremony held on Sunday, March 26 where over $100,000 in cash and prizes were distributed. Dutch filmmaker Douwe Dijkstra won Best Documentary Short Film from the jury for its innovative reconstruction of Somali refugee Ali Abdi’s journey to the Netherlands. The film receives $1,000 in cash donated by Tënk Canada, which will stream the film on its platform.

On the Canadian front, Madeleine by Raquel Sancinetti is the winner of the FIPRESCI Prize. (Full disclosure: I was a member of the jury.) Madeleine receives a cash prize of $2,000, courtesy of the Bureau du cinéma de Saguenay, and $3,000 in services via SLA Location. The film, which had its world premiere at REGARD, offers a humorous and empathetic portrait of 106-year-old Madeleine as she reflects upon her life’s journey and takes one last trip to the beach with the director thanks to the aid of lively stop-motion animation.

The 27th edition of Saguenay’s short film festival returned to full theatrical screenings this year with many events at capacity. This year’s festival ran from March 22 to 26.


The full list of winners for the 2023 REGARD – Saguenay International Film Festival is as follows:

Canadian Grand Prize: La trente-deuxième saison – Charles-Émile Lafrance (Canada/Quebec)

Special mention: Sèt Lam – Vincent Fontano (France)

Grand Prize: Natureza Humana – Mónica Lima (Portugal/Germany)

Jury Prize: Invincible – Vincent René-Lortie (Canada)

Special mention: Tskaltubo – Toby Andris (Canada/Georgia)

Best Animated Short Film: Ice Merchants – João Gonzalez (Portugal/France/UK)

Special mention: Eeva – Morten Tsinakov Lucija Mrzljak (Estonia/Croatia)

Best Documentary Short Film: Buurman Abdi – Douwe Dijkstra (Netherlands)

FIPRESCI Prize: Madeleine – Raquel Sancinetti (Canada)

Quebec Critic Award AQCC: Se dit d’un cerf qui quitte son bois – Salomé Crickx (Belgium)

Special mention: An Avocado Pit – Ary Zara (Portugal)

Public Prize, Parallel Competition: Bonne fête le désordre – Jean-Martin Gagnon Guillaume Harvey (Canada)

Public Prize, Official Competition: An Avocado Pit – Ary Zara (Portugal)

Americana Award: Entre dos islas – Hideki Nakazaki (Cuba/Spain)

Shoot No Matter What Award: Bergen, Norvège – Alexia Roc (Canada)

Special Mention: Printemps – Sebastien Duguay (Canada)

Philippe Belley Award: Au bout du monde – William Pagé (Canada)

Short and Queer Award: Nuit blonde – Gabrielle Demers (Canada)

Special mention: An Avocado Pit – Ary Zara (Portugal)

Best Youth Short Film: À mort le bikini ! – Justine Gauthier (Canada)

Special Mention: Simo – Aziz Zoromba (Canada)

Pat Mullen is the publisher of POV Magazine. He holds a Master’s in Film Studies from Carleton University where his research focused on adaptation and Canadian cinema. Pat has also contributed to outlets including The Canadian Encyclopedia, Paste, That Shelf, Sharp, Xtra, and Complex. He is the vice president of the Toronto Film Critics Association and an international voter for the Golden Globe Awards.

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