2019-2020 

MANHATTANHENGE FILM FESTIVAL 2020 WINNERS & OFFICIAL SELECTIONS

 

 

US NARRATIVE FILMS

 

FINALIST

Redemption Day

Directed by

Hicham Hajji

After being awarded the Medal of Honor for his bravery during a firefight against ISIS, U.S. Marine Captain Brad Paxton (Gary Dourdan) is suffering from the long-term effects of being in a war zone. In the care of his loving wife, Kate (Serinda Swan), Brad is trying to adjust to civilian life. When Kate, a renowned archeologist, is given a once-in-a-lifetime career opportunity in Morocco. Brad urges her to follow it. 

Hicham Hajji is not only a very passionate filmmaker, but he’s also the first-ever Moroccan/Arab to write, produce and direct a Hollywood feature film.
In 2008, after working on a number of high-profile projects, Hicham created his Production Company H FiLMS with the aim to bridge the gap between Hollywood and Morocco and help develop major productions in the region along with the company’s own slate of high-profile projects.
He specializes in international productions with a mandate to make high-quality and commercially viable features worldwide and want to tell great, unique stories in a variety of genres that resonate with audiences everywhere.


 

SEMI-FINALIST

 

2018

Directed by

Myles Flusser

The struggles of a budding film partnership intertwined with the reuniting of a girl with her innocent childhood friend.

19 Years Old, born in New Paltz, NY. "2018" is his Writing/Directing debut. He is partnered with Alex Young and this is their first film.


 

Crappy Mother's Day

Directed by

Dan Karlok

3 generations of women get together on Mother's Day and all sorts of craziness happens.

Dan Karlok is a two-time Emmy award winning and Grammy nominated director and cinematographer. Crappy Mother's Day is his first full length feature film.
His other work includes directing an episode of the acclaimed Law and Order series.
Dan’s other notable accomplishments include shooting Ride with Bob, a documentary featuring Willie Nelson, Lyle Lovett, Dwight Yoakam and the Dixie Chicks, and the comedy feature film The Last Request, featuring Danny Aiello, Joe Piscopo and Barbara Feldon. His documentary, Antone’s Home of the Blues, premiered at the SXSW Film Festival as the Opening Night Film.

 

Ellipsis

Directed by

Ben Parsons

A young man and woman reconnect at their high school reunion and wind up spending the evening discussing their differing views on life, love, and whether they've been given another shot at being together.

 

DEADLY PROMISES

Directed by

Joseph Ramos

Dillon Copeland is an attractive, talented teenager who resides with his uncle in Colorado. He has a crush on Megan who is also interested in him. But Travis, the popular High School jock, likes her too and it's only a matter of time before the tension gets out of control.
As the plot thickens, some VERY disturbing secrets are revealed... the kind of secrets that are better kept in the basement.
How could Uncle Max keep this secret for so long? Promises are made as the story unfolds… and promises, even deadly ones, must be kept...

Joseph Ramos is a Writer and Director based in Colorado. He studied at the Art Institute of Colorado for Media Arts and Animation, followed by Colorado Film School for Writing and Directing

 

 

 

 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS

 

 

Radio Silence

Directed by

Troy Scoughton, Sr.


 

A Story Worth Living

Directed by

Vanessa Leonard


 

Last Party

Directed by

Julian Santos


 

Nika

Directed by

Leilani Amour Arenzana


 

PROBASHI

Directed by

Sayef Zaman


 


 


 


 

 

FOREIGN FEATURE FILMS

 

 

FINALIST

 

 

ETERNAL

Directed by

Shin Saito

German war-time experiments, Symphony No. 9 led by Furtwängler, and conch shell poison. This is a tale of love and science fiction depicting the fate of a couple shaped by these three entwining elements unbound by time.

Born in 1972.
He entered Yamagata University in 1992. While conducting research on detection devices for X-rays radiating from black holes, he directed 20 short films as a member of the film society in his six years there, including graduate school. Completing his graduate studies at Yamagata University in 1998, he began making independent films in 2001 while based in Shiojiri, Nagano. He has continued making films while based in Saitama since 2014.


 


 

SEMI-FINALISTS

 

Mosul

Directed by

Dan Gabriel

The gritty, thrilling story of local militias and uneasy allies who banded together to liberate Iraq's second-largest city of 1.3 million people from ISIS in 2017.

Dan Gabriel is the Executive Producer and creative direction behind MOSUL, the documentary feature film on the battle to reclaim Iraq's second largest city from the Islamic State (ISIS) in 2017.


 

The Enemies

Directed by

Giorgi Gachava

August 8, 2008. Georgian -South Ossetian conflict. Georgian troops are in main administrative town of South Ossetia – Tskhinvali. While searching a house, Georgian soldier hears extraneous noise coming from the underground. He sends his friend for help whilst he stays at the entrance to the basement. All of a sudden shell bombing starts and some shells hit the house. In order to escape inevitable death Georgian is forced to open the basement door and jump in thus trapping himself underground. What will happen to him? what is his fate? does he manage to get out?


 

Redemption Day

Directed by

Hicham Hajji

 


 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS


 

POOVANKOZHI ( The Rooster )

Directed by

UNNI AVARMA


 


 


 


 


 


 

SHORT FILMS

FINALIST

Watermark

Directed by

Rebecca Maddalo

When Meg moves in with her longtime boyfriend, she is suddenly terrorized by memories of a past trauma from years earlier. Desperate to move forward with the life she wants, she constructs an imagined space in her mind to confront her ghosts and battle their grasp on her reality.

A graduate of Harvard University, Rebecca received her B.A. in Filmmaking with a minor in Music, and is currently studying for her MFA in Directing at the American Film Institute. Rebecca began her career in documentary work, most notably acting as Associate Producer on the feature length documentary THE GUYS NEXT DOOR, which premiered in 2016 at the Sarasota Film Festival and has been screened at numerous festivals since

 

 

 

 


 

SEMI-FINALISTS

Juicy Girl

Directed by
MJ KIM

‘Juicy Girl’ is based on events surrounding the murders of several of the many Korean women committed by US Army personnel since the Korean War of the 1950’s.


 

MJ Kim is an internationally renowned photographer who has worked with some of the biggest names such as Johnny Depp, Ed Sheeran, Paul McCartney and many more.


 

 

Red

Directed by

 

Frances Wilkerson

Each day Red, a once famous TV clown, wakes up to his life. A life where his son is dead, his wife wants a divorce, bills are piling up and he is now a small time party clown. Bitter and perpetually intoxicated, he projects his unhappiness onto others, leaving a trail of chaos behind him.

 

 

Ghost of a Chance

 

Directed by

Manes Duerr

When the essence of Love is snatched from someone and locked away in a vessel with no name , what happens to those persons and how do they change? How can the broken hearted souls break that curse and recover from their pain? Can they regain their spark by overcoming dark supernatural forces?


 

A Cure for Silence

Directed by

Ian Tan, Derrick Chen

Forgotten on her own 18th birthday, Jolene resents her family's concern for her sister, who is dying of a debilitating terminal disease. When Jolene receives an emergency call from her Mother, she must reckon with her jealousy of her dying sister, who is being prepared for a dangerous but possibly life saving surgery.


 

Devil's Whisper

Directed by

Paul Mayora

Adrien is a lawyer who's past consumes his every state of being, as regret and his sub-consciousness haunts his thoughts and begins to spirals out of control.


 

Pepper

Directed by

Anna-Maria Barbaro

In 1960s rural Australia, a young girl named Pepper and her classmates are subjected to a narcissistic school teacher, Ms Harpie, and the abuse of corporal punishment. Together with her two friends, Rachel and Susie, Pepper embarks on an adventure of mischievous pranks to restore the balance of power.


 

Return to Me

Directed by

Drew M. Weiss

A grandfather starts losing touch with his rebellious granddaughter after her parents die.


 

A Missing Piece

Directed by

Grace Chang

Ling, a former Peking Opera performer, tries to enlist her teenage son, David to deliver a mysterious package to her aging Opera master. During their visit at her master’s old folks home in Chinatown, something unexpected happens that leads Ling and David to find the “Missing Piece”.


 

The Nun's Kaddish

Directed by

Luis ismael

A heart-warming vignette that portrays a true story of inter-religious kindness when a Nun observes a Jewish ritual.


 

 


 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS


 

Death Offers Life - last moments of Vincent Van Gogh

Directed by

Saheer Abbas


 

Ducks

Directed by

Nicholas V. Andros


 

Hackers: The Misfit Superheroes

Directed by

Ethan Wilk


 

Doors

Directed by

Caleb Harris


 

That's My Time

Directed by

Matthew Wayne Roberts, Ben Voelker


 

Good Intentions

Directed by

Simone Kisiel


 

Mary of Exeter

Directed by

George Barron


 

Murphy's Lost

Directed by

Anna Gamburg


 

I Resign

Directed by

Jay Mohan


 

THE ROLE OF A LIFETIME

Directed by

Marc saez


 

Photogenic

Directed by

Robert Redfern


 

EXTRA INNINGS

Directed by

John Gray


 

Definetly Soy

Directed by

Ruben Zaccaroni


 

Gone

Directed by

Joan Bentosela


 

Dear Doctor

Directed by

Michael Hook, Shannon Daughtry, Julie Willson


 

Bonne Conduite

Directed by

Théo Semeteys


 

The Light Thief

Directed by

Eva Daoud


 

Essential

Directed by

Robert X. Golphin


 


 


 


 


 

HORROR FILMS

FINALIST


 

The Barber

Directed by

Sergiy Pudich

The brutal biker comes to the barbershop when it was already closed, but the barber still agreed to make the last cut...

Sergiy Pudich is a Ukrainian film and commercials director who always tries new technics and ways to tell stories in an extraordinary way. His career starts in 2010 when he won a student video contest, after which he received several awards in different festivals and competitions. In 2016 and 2017 Sergiy became "Director of the year" during the "Creative youth of Odessa" award.
For his filmmaking career, Sergiy received more than 100 awards for his movie, commercials, social advertising and music videos.


 


 

COMEDY FILMS

FINALIST
 

Singles' Diaries

Directed by

Sascha El Waraki

"Singles' Diaries" is a comedy webseries about 5 urban singles and their daily struggle with dates, Tinder, the question freedom or relationship or the desire to have children.
What the most of them have to learn is, that they have to stop hunting their desires. Just turn to each other and give a person a chance.

In every episode the narrator view is changing from one to another character. The storylines of our 5 Singles are crossing each other on a funny way. Scenes are be shown from different angles.

 

 

 

 


 


 

SEMI-FINALISTS

Bonne Conduite

Directed by

Théo Semeteys

Fred, a driving instructor, hits a girl on the street. Thinking that she died instantly, he decides to put the body in the trunk and go to his driving course as if nothing had happened. What he does not know is that the girl is still alive.


 

Ojos Que No Ven

Directed by

Abraham Rozenbaum


Silvia and Fernando go on their first vacation together. On their first night in the hotel, their terrible sex life tears them apart. Seeking unusual solutions to their problem the vacation becomes an adventure that could flip their relationship upside down.


 

Reality Disorder

Directed by

Gerard Bianco Jr.

Nikki and Gerard, two struggling independent producers in New York City, are desperate for a hit series. After a promising meeting with a television network, they set off to make a reality show with Gerard's rich playboy cousin.


 



 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS

Help From Above

Directed by

Joshua Nelson


 

Border Patrol

Directed by

John Lopez

Dutch

Directed by

Mark Boutros


 

 

 

 

 


 

BEST STUDENT FILMS

FINALIST


 

A Cure for Silence

Directed by

Ian Tan, Derrick Chen
Forgotten on her own 18th birthday, Jolene resents her family's concern for her sister, who is dying of a debilitating terminal disease. When Jolene receives an emergency call from her Mother, she must reckon with her jealousy of her dying sister, who is being prepared for a dangerous but possibly life saving surgery.


 

 


 

SEMI-FINALIST


 

Remnant

Directed by

Jenny He

A strong-willed, resentful daughter visits her estranged, Alzheimer's-stricken father in hopes of confronting him of his wrongdoings.


 

Bonne Conduite

Directed by

Théo Semeteys

Fred, a driving instructor, hits a girl on the street. Thinking that she died instantly, he decides to put the body in the trunk and go to his driving course as if nothing had happened. What he does not know is that the girl is still alive.


 

The Ascent

Directed by

Sarah Larson, Val Bodurtha

TRAVIS HOWLAND is a sophomore at his top-tier college, pledging one of the most exclusive fraternities on campus. He and his friend CALEB attend the last night of hell week, a final round of intense hazing led by frat stars MIKE, NATE, and BRIAN, the president of Kappa Chi.


 

Meow

Directed by

Yu Shu Grace Wang

This is a story about a dog, who thinks he is a cat, meets a real dog for the first time.


 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS


 

Chateau Sauvignon: terroir

Directed by

D.M. Night Maire


 

When The Wolf Comes Home

Directed by

Nicole Rinaldi


 

Unsaid

Directed by

Sam Dobbs


 

QUARANTINE NYC

Directed by

Alexander Samuilov


 

Follow the Bubbles to the Top

Directed by

D. Patrick Grady


 

Out of Mind

Directed by

Tigran Nersisian


 

The Fall

Directed by

Ben Senior


 


 


 


 


 

DOCUMENTARY FILMS

FINALIST


 

The Donbass children

Directed by

Lubomir Dankov

This is a movie about the Donbas war, first-person stories. You will hear the stories of so-called "ordinary people". These people suffered from irrational from a military point of view strikes on civilian targets. They are victims of someone's desire to wage war on their territory at all costs.


 


 


 


 

SEMI-FINALISTS

Sockeye Salmon. Red fish

Directed by

Dmitriy Shpilenok , Vladislav Grishin

Sockeye, a species of wild salmon, is born in Kamchatkan waters and spends its entire life in the Pacific Ocean. Only once does it return to fresh waters - to give offspring, start the circle of life, and die. It is an inexhaustible resource that feeds billions of people on the planet, restored every year! But soon, we may find ourselves facing the unimaginable: humans will exhaust the inexhaustible!


 

L'EAU EST LA VIE (WATER IS LIFE)

Directed by

Sam Vinal

On the banks of Louisiana, fierce Indigenous women are ready to fight—to stop the corporate blacksnake and preserve their way of life. They are risking everything to protect Mother Earth from the predatory fossil fuel companies that seek to poison it.


 

Frank Little

Directed by

Daniel Stanislawski

Frank Little is a passionate photographer who takes photos of New York City.
He is known especially for cityscapes and for moonrise and moonset photos over NYC.
He many achievements. Among them are photo exhibitions in Spain or in the lobby of the famous Empire State Building skyscraper.
Frank is a humble man with a good heart. I decided to contact him and make a short documentary. My love for filmmaking and New York also contributed to the effect of our cooperation.


 


 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS


 

A Week In June

Directed by

Jay Sansone


 

"A World Within A World: The Bay Houses of Long Island"

Directed by

Barbara J Weber , Greg Blank

The One and Only Jewish Miss America

Directed by

David Arond


 

Rivense

Directed by

Amelia Spilger


 


 


 


 

EXPERIMENTAL FILMS

FINALIST

One Actor Short 

Directed by

Yuval David


Yuval David’s ‘One Actor Short’ Brings to Reality An Unscripted Fully Improvised High-Stakes Crime Procedural on Manhattan Streets.

Award-winning actor, host, and filmmaker Yuval David has created the first-ever episodic digital series dedicated to creating films in an experimental and improvisational format by including randomly selected individuals from the street to spontaneously play roles in the film – ‘One Actor Short.’


 

SEMI-FINALIST


 

Seduction

Directed by

Jim Lively


 


 

 

 

 

 


 

WEB SERIES

FINALIST


 

Hani's Barber Shop

Directed by

Tomer Werechson

Hani is a 35 years old single hairdresser that is struggling between her two biggest dreams: being a succesfull and well known hairdresser and finding true love.


 

 

 

 

 


 

SEMI-FINALISTS


 

Singles' Diaries

Directed by

Sascha El Waraki


 

The Void Rebooted

Directed by

Joe Bauer

 

 

 


 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS


 

Grab & Go

Directed by

Tsyen Shen


 

The Opportunist

Directed by

Lance Barrett


 

Busy As Usual

Directed by

Sean Perez, Elijah McKeogh


 

Side Hustle

Directed by

Bryan Fonseca


 


 


 

BEST DIRECTOR

FINALIST

 

 

 


 

I Resign

Directed by

Jay Mohan

Jay Mohan is a filmmaker based out of Dallas, Texas. As a new comer to the Dallas movie making arena, he started making films only from 2018. Within a short span of time he has made three short films covering multiple aspects of human life that has received worldwide recognition. As a computer engineer and software business owner by profession, he started down the path of filmmaking due to sheer passion. His enthusiasm to create stories covering wide variety of human emotions while his characters are faced with common diabolical yet heart wrenching hurdles make him stand out. As a story writer, director and cinematographer, he dreams of painting frames that will touch human emotions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

SEMI-FINALISTS


 

THE ROLE OF A LIFETIME

Directed by

Marc Saez

A man, a woman, a payback.


 

Singles' Diaries

Directed by

Sascha El Waraki


 

The Light Thief

Directed by

Eva Daoud


 

Ellipsis

Directed by

Ben Parsons


 


 


 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS

 

Doors

Directed by

Caleb Harris

 

2018

Directed by

Myles Flusser

 

 

That's My Time

Directed by

Matthew Wayne Roberts, Ben Voelker

POOVANKOZHI ( The Rooster )

Directed by

UNNI AVARMA

 

INTRUDERS - INTRUSOS

Directed by

Miguel Sahid Rodriguez, Andres F. Mejia


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

BEST ACTOR

FINALIST


 

Devil's Whisper

Directed by

Paul Mayora

Actor: Cristian Saliadarre


 

SEMI-FINALIST


 

I Resign

Directed by

Jay Mohan

Actor: Manoj Pillai


 

Singles' Diaries

Directed by

Sascha El Waraki

Actor: Lena Meckel

 

Definetly Soy

Directed by

Ruben Zaccaroni

Actor: George Zouvelos

EXTRADITION

Directed by

Anthony Grasso

Actor: Kristin Samuelson


 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS

DEADLY PROMISES

Directed by

Joseph Ramos

Actor: Julian Crouser


 

THE ROLE OF A LIFETIME

Directed by

Marc Saez

Actor: Véronique PICCIOTTO


 

Hometown Hero

Directed by

Nevin George, Fabio Rothlin

Actor:Nenad Zezelj


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

BEST TRAILER

FINALIST


 

Marilyn Fan

Directed by

Babsy Artner

 

 

 

 


 

SEMI-FINALISTS


 

Falling Back to One

Directed by

Randy Mason


 

The Gifted Ones

Directed by

Chadaporn Mitinunwong


 

 

 


 

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS

Parasito

Directed by

JD Davis


 

The Unsuperheroes

Directed by

Caitlynn Silvius


 

Anti-Heroes Promo Short

Directed by

Shawn Uebele


 

Charlene

Directed by

Hasan Qureshi

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