The winners of the 22° edition of ShorTS International Film Festival

The 22nd edition of ShorTS International Film Festival ended on Saturday 10 July with the award ceremony live at the Cinema Ariston in Trieste and on the Facebook page. The Trieste-based event announced the winners of the 2021 edition of the various competitive sections, confirming its commitment to the search for new cinematic viewpoints.

This is the statement from the director Chiara Valenti Omero and the co-director Maurizio di Rienzo: “This was a very special edition, which on the one hand saw the return of the public and on the other the confirmation of online consumption at international level. Personally, we are satisfied, even if we realise that the entire sector will have to make huge efforts to ensure that people return to the cinema. In any case, despite the health uncertainties and turbulent nature of the current times, there was a good turnout and a higher-than-expected level of guest participation. This bodes well for the future, towards which we are already working.”

There was also large participation on the virtual side of the Festival. The streaming platform of MYmovies, technical partner of ShorTS 2021, has seen an extraordinary success of online audience, with around 100 thousand views from more than 30 different countries. After Italy (from which 84% of the online audience came), the largest number of hits on the ShorTS 2021 streaming platform came from Israel, the United States and China. Out of the virtual participation in Italy, a large part came from Lombardy (30%), which, like last year, confirmed itself as the Italian region that followed the festival online the most. Friuli Venezia Giulia (12%) was in second place, Veneto (11%) in third place, followed by Lazio (8%) and Liguria (7%). These are significant figures, as they make it clear that the online edition does not impinge on the live one, but rather complements and brings the two aspects of the event together, expanding its audience through new channels.

The winners of the 22nd edition of the ShorTS International Film Festival


(Jury composed of director and screenwriter Ella Cieslinski, actress Nadia Kibout and director and producer Amos Geva)

Premio EstEnergy – Hera Group
Best Short Film – €5,000

I Am Afraid to Forget Your Face by Sameh Alaa
(Egypt/France/Belgium/Qatar, 2020)

“For confronting traditions, norms and gender roles, and treating the topics with a deep, yet universal emotion. For the unique camerawork, which amazes while remaining simple, touching a political nerve from an unexpective perspective and for wanting to see the face of a loved one for the last time. The emotions stayed with us long after watching the film.”

Special mention to

Välguga löödud (Struck by Lightning) by Raul Esko e Romet Esko
(Estonia, 2020)

“This film is a brave, personal and unconventional tribute by the filmmakers to their friend Brandon who, as they say, was too special for this world. As they mourn his death, they embark on a journey through time and memories, celebrating their friendship with what held them together: humour, fun, and music. Exploring the boundaries of storytelling, the filmmakers have created an eclectic and playful collage that reveals an unexpected power. Just like their friend Brandon, the film doesn’t tuck away neatly in a drawer but expands the possibilities of modern cinema.”


Premio AcegasApsAmga
(Jury composed of employees of AcegasApsAmga and the Hera Group)
Best Italian Short – €3,000

Ape Regina by Nicola Sorcinelli
(Italy, 2019)

“For the second year in a row and with an even greater sense of responsibility, given the €3,000 prize introduced this year, as the Hera Group jury we had the arduous task of choosing the winner of the best Italian short film. This was not an easy choice due to the consistently high level of the shorts selected by ShorTS, as well as the presence of several animated films that created a debate among the jurors on the variety of languages and styles that characterised this selection. Nevertheless, it was evident from the outset that the jury was united in a clear preference for one short film, which in the end did not require any discussion. Both the vividness of the images and the ability to narrate very topical issues, but with a new language and a different point of view, convinced everyone almost immediately. For having managed to expose the meeting of cultures in a few delicate frames, elevating differences to an element of union and solitude to a perspective of community.”


Premio del pubblico
Best Short voted for by the audience.

Solitaire by Edoardo Natoli
(Italy, 2020)

Premio AMC
Best editing in an Italian Short

Ape Regina by Nicola Sorcinelli
(Italy, 2019)

“Direct in stating its intent, it deals with sensitive and topical issues through an impressive parallelism with insects. This is a symphony about life, help, sharing, friendship and survival of the whole planet. The editing as well as the direction are well constructed and elegant. It offers linear editing which always remains faithful to the story, without smears or mannerisms of any kind. We have rewarded the simplicity and fluidity of this editing.”

First Special Mention to

La Grande Onda by Francesco Tortorella
(Italy, 2020)

“The story, in its harshness and simplicity, is fluid and captivating, and the editing follows suit, with impeccable filmic timing. It is visually convincing, everything is well calibrated and has an artistic coherence with a well-constructed and well-developed plot. It also tells a complex and articulated story in a clear, convincing and interesting way. This is a story with dense and pungent content.”

Second Special Mention to

Gas Station by Olga Torrico
(Italy, 2020)

“There was a great effort in the making and editing especially of the parts on film, resulting in a creative use of repertoire that reinforces the language chosen and “completes” the discourse of the film. The acting is slight, sometimes forced and not very believable. We acknowledge the young age of the director and the creative effort made in using the repertoire, which is undoubtedly very interesting”.


(Jury composed of film journalist Marta Balaga, director and producer Ilir Butka, Lithuanian actress Aisté Diržiūtė and director Giuseppe M. Gaudino)

MYmovies Award
Best Feature Film

Mighty Flash (Destello Bravio) by Ainhoa Rodríguez
(Spain, 2021)

“For its particular and original approach to taking on the themes of patriarchy, feminism and liberation, going one step further than their usual representation. Thanks to its innovative cinematography, the roles of characters and places interchange and add an intriguing grandeur to the scene of independent cinema.”

First Special Mention to

Pebbles (Koozhangal) by P.S. Vinothraj

“Because of its authenticity, the director has enabled us to learn about a human condition that seems distant to us, and to be surprised by what we see. Thank you for this good film which is able to enrich us and speak to the heart.”

Second Special Mention to

Radiograph of a Family by Firouzeh Khosrovani
(Norway/Iran/Switzerland, 2020)

“In this film, the director analyses the history of her divided country through her family’s complicated heritage. From scanning old letters and photos in search of answers she never received as a child, the director finds a new way to show that sometimes, in order to understand the present, you need to look back to the past.”

Premio del pubblico
Best feature film voted by the public

Longing Souls (El Alma Quiere Volar) di Diana Montenegro García
(Colombia/Brazil, 2020)

Premio SNCCI – Sindacato Nazionale Critici Cinematografici Italiani

(Jury composed of critics Adriano De Grandis, Gemma Lanzo and Raffaele Meale)
Best feature film voted by the SNCCI jury

Pebbles (Koozhangal) by P.S. Vinothraj
(India, 2021)

“For its ability to seamlessly blend a vivid representation of reality and a metaphor for the human condition, through the aridity of its natural and mental landscapes. Following in the footsteps of neo-realism and Iranian cinema, this dualistic film manages to put us into a child’s shoes and to portray inequality in a society where those at the bottom, the poor, children and women (the only ones who might still know how to find water) must pay the highest price.”



Premio Shorter Kids
Best Kids Short Film

Tobi and the Turbobus by Verena Fels and Marc Angele
(Germany, 2020)

Premio Shorter Teens
Best Teens Short Film

Tikkun Olam by Bob Ahmed
(USA, 2021)


Premio Rai Cinema Channel VR
Best Virtual Reality Short Film – €3,000

Black Bag by Shao Qing
(China, 2019)

Premio ShorTS Virtual Reality
Best Virtual Reality Short Film voted by the public – €2,000

Om Devi: Sheroes Revolution by Claudio Casale
(India/Italy, 2020)


Premio Cinema del Presente 2021

Alice Rohrwacher


Premio Prospettiva 2021

Luka Zunic

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