Lav Diaz wins best director award at Venice film fest

Published September 13, 2020, 12:31 PM

by Robert Requintina

Filipino filmmaker Lav Diaz, known for his film masterpieces that sometimes run up to 11 hours, won best director for his movie “Lahi, Hayop (Genus, Pan)” in the Orizzonti section of Venice film festival held last Saturday.

French director Claire Denis led the jury of the Orrizonti section. For the main competition, Oscar winner Cate Blanchett is president of the jurors. 

“Lahi, Hayop” is about three illegal miners’ journey back to their island after months of toiling in hellish conditions. With their hard-earned money, they traversed the sea, the mountains and the forest until they reached their destination. The three miners are Paulo (played by Guingona), Baldo (played by Josef) and Andres played by DMs Boongaling.

Diaz was also the writer, editor, and cinematographer in his latest movie that runs for two hour and 37 minutes. “Lahi, Hayop” was also nominated for best film and jury prize in the same section.

This is not the first time that Diaz won recognition in the prestigious Venice film festival now in its 77th year.

On Sept. 10, 2016, the black-and-white revenge tale “The Woman Who Left” by Diaz won the Golden Lion prize for best picture.  

In 2007, his movie “Kagadanan sa Banwaan ning mga Engkanto (Death in the Land of Encantos),” the Closing Film of the orizzonti section of the 64th Venice Film Festival, was awarded with a Golden Lion Special Mention.

At the 65th Venice International Film Festival in 2008, his film “Melancholia” won the Orizzonti Grand Prize.

The Venice film festival is said to be the oldest film festival and equals in prestige alongside Cannes and Berlin film festivals.

READ MORE: Lav Diaz to compete anew in Venice