'Pop Aye' wins best international film at 2017 Zurich Film Festival


The winning films at the 2017 Zurich Film Festival have been announced.


Kirsten Tan’s Pop Aye won the prestigious Golden Eye for best film in the international feature film competition.

The film is Singapore’s entry for the Oscars and has already won the world cinema dramatic special jury award for screenwriting at this year’s Sundance, as well as the VPRO big screen award at International Film Festival Rotterdam.

Set in Thailand, it stars Thaneth Warakulnukroh as a down and out architect who is reunited with his childhood elephant and embarks on a road trip across the Thai countryside. 

Custody by Xavier Legrand and Under The Tree by Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurdsson earned a special mention in the category.

Rahul Jain’s Machines won the international documentary prize, with Thomas Haemmerli’s I Am Gentrification. Confessions Of A Scoundrel and Pau Ortiz’s The Other Side Of The Wall earning special mentions.

Both international feature and documentary awards come with a CHF 25,000 ($25,541) cash prize.

Lisa Brühlmann’s Swiss coming-of-age film Blue My Mind won the best film in the focus: Switzerland, Germany, Austria Competition category. The award comes with a CHF 20,000 ($20,433) prize. The film also won the critics’ choice award for best debut feature in competition.

Mark Grieco’s provocative amazon rainforest doc A River Below won the audience award.


The full list of winners


International Feature Film Competition

Winner: Pop Aye by Kirsten Tan (Singapore)

Special Mentions: Custody by Xavier Legrand (France) and Under The Tree by Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurdsson (Iceland, Denmark, Poland, Germany)

International Documentary Film Competition

Winner: Machines by Rahul Jain (India, Germany, Finland)

Special Mentions: I Am Gentrification. Confessions Of A Scoundrel by Thomas Haemmerli (Switzerland) and The Other Side Of The Wall by Pau Ortiz (Spain, Mexico)


Focus: Switzerland, Germany, Austria

Blue My Mind by Lisa Brühlmann (Switzerland)

Emerging Swiss Talent Award

Winner: Before Summer Ends by Maryam Goormaghtigh (Switzerland)

Special Mention: Animals by Greg Zglinski (Switzerland, Austria, Poland)

Critics’ Choice Award for Best Debut Feature Film in Competition

Blue My Mind by Lisa Brühlmann (Switzerland)

Audience Award

A River Below by Mark Grieco (Colombia, USA)

Kids Jury Award for Best Children’s Film

Up In The Sky by Peter Lennstrand (Sweden)

Audience Award for Best Children’s Film

Rabbit School – Guardians Of The Golden Egg by Ute von Münchow-Pohl (Germany)

Treatment Competition Award

Seraina Nyikos for Secondo (Switzerland)