L'Etrange 2014: THE VOICES Speaks To Voters At Festival's End

Contributor; Paris
L'Etrange 2014: THE VOICES Speaks To Voters At Festival's End
One of the great fantastic film festivals came to a close last night. Paris' l'Etrange Festival closed out its 20th edition by honoring Marjane Satrapi's The Voices with not one, but two big prizes. 

The Franco-Persian director, best known for the adaptations of her own graphic novels Persepolis and Chicken With Plums, marked both her English language debut and her first time with somebody else's screenplay with The Voices. She was duly recognized for her effort, beaming as she was beamed in from Skype to collect the Canal+ Nouveau Genre Award (the festival's grand prize) and the equally prestigious Audience Award. While our Jason Gorber had a mixed reaction to the film, finding it both silly and schizoid, I found the work -- which plays something like Bill Lustig's Maniac were it directed by Rocky and Bullwinkle animator Jay Ward -- a lot easier to love and admire. 

The same two prizes were awarded in the short film competition as well, there the Grand Prix Canal+ going to Joost Reijmers Pony Place, a comedy of iPad apps and generational disconnect, and Carlos Torrens' more frenetic Sequence, about a man who finds he's on everyone's mind, taking home the Audience Award. 

A round of applause for all three, and a larger one to the festival organizers for putting together another stellar lineup. Stay strange, guys, and see you for next year's blackjack edition!
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