May 29, 2021 (SIGNIS). The 16th edition of the Popoli e Religioni Terni Film Festival opened from 7 to November 15, 2020, and continued from 22 to May 29, 2021.

The SIGNIS jury has decided to award its Prize to the film Al Dio ignoto (To The Unknown God), directed by Rodolfo Bisatti (Italy, 2020).

Lucia, a mother in mourning, is still in anguish from the loss of her young daughter several years due to illness. Lucia’s job as a hospice nurse provides her with a daily reminder of the impact of death. With the help of one patient, particularly Professor Giulio, Lucia learns to deal with her own pain and understand the delicate balance and the intricate mystery of life and death. A moving and touching tribute to life and an embracing appreciation of the Christian faith. 

The jury has also decided to award a Commendation to the film Omar and Us, directed by Marynar Er Gorbach and Mehmet Bahadir Er (Turkey, 2019).

Ismet, a recently retired Turkish Coast Guard commander, happens upon Syrian refugees Omar and his sister Mariye, trying to steal their way to Europe through Turkey and Greece. Ismet has his own family problems with his wife and son, but this is a sturdy portrayal of human tolerance and acceptance. The migrant crisis is still very real, and this film encourages continuing dialogue on this sensitive topic. 

The members of the SIGNIS Jury were Fr. Florin Ioan Silaghi SJ (Romania), Emanuela Vinai (Italy), and Douglas Fahleson (Ireland).

The Popoli e Religioni Terni Film Festival is an international film festival created in 2015 that takes place annually in November. The festival focuses on interfaith dialogue, spirituality in cinema, immigrant integration, visual education and activities for prisoners. A SIGNIS jury was invited to take part in the festival for the first time in 2017.