Oberhausen, May 10th, 2018 (SIGNIS/INTERFILM). At the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen 2018, the Ecumenical Jury awarded its prize to the Chinese film Magnificent Obsession (by Zhong Su, China).

The Jury explained that Magnificent Obsession, “is one of the formulations of the political and social issues of our time.” It shows “the relationship between the individual and community or society, and how the individual can live in the latter's reality. Zhong Su's artwork, set in contemporary China, portrays this as the tale of an individual's search for knowledge and transcendence by displaying the reality he faces in a kaleidoscope of three synoptic perspectives”. They add “It is an epic short film work of art.”

The ecumenical jury also gave two commendations.

The first one was given to Erh Hao Chiu Yi (On the Waitlist, by Wu Hung Yi, Taiwan, 2017). The members of the jury said that “the film is the intense and successful portrait of the challenges of friendship, cohesion, community, comparison, ambition, mediocrity and the talents of two young women on this path.”

The second commendation was given to Caterpillarplasty (by David Barlow-Krelina, Canada), for being “a dark, wet, equally fascinating and slippery glamour portrait of an alleged beauty”.

The Jury also awarded a Certificate to a film from the Children and Youth Film Competition, Carlotta's Face, by Frédéric Schuld and Valentin Riedl (Germany). This certificate serves as a recommendation to acquire the non-commercial distribution rights by the church film distribution companies in Germany, Matthias Film (Protestant) and Katholisches Filmwerk (kfw).

The film tells the story of Carlotta, whose world is marked by a physical limitation. The Jury explained that “The animated images of this short film charmingly illustrate the impressive story of a face blind woman, her path through school and life, while adopting her perspective on the world. The masterly quality of this dignified and unbiased short film consists in revealing the impossibility, caused by her lack of a physical image of herself, of this artfully animated perspective and at the same time in portraying her in a successful and loving way without reducing her by mere pity.” The jury added: “The film is a jewel that deconstructs the significance of the face for our culture by textual images and selfies and even bans on images and images of god in order to rebuild them together.”