10th HARD:LINE Film Festival: April 6th until April 9th 2023

And the winner is...

Slowly, the sun displaces the dark days in Regensburg and the light returns to the cathedral city. For five days, almost 1700 spectators from all over Germany indulged in the dark side of entertainment. Horror, thrillers and sci-fi from all over the world were on the agenda at the 9th HARD:LINE Film Festival, German and even world premieres were celebrated. There was discussion and judgement, both from the audience and from the three-member jury tasked with finding the winner of the prestigious Méliès D'Argent. Both the jury of experts and the fans found what they were looking for. In 2022, three awards were therefore also presented on the closing evening of the festival.

Audience Award - Best Short Film

The "Silver Razor Blade", which was created in allusion to the festival logo and awards the best short film from the audience's point of view, went to the Spanish production DANA. Director Lucía Forner Segarra had travelled from Spain especially to attend the festival and was thus able to accept the award in person. Close behind in second place was the German production O by Dominik Balkow, which brought an addiction metaphor to the screen in powerful images and, in the best Lynch tradition, was one of the highlights of the festival. The jury was also so taken with Balkow's film that it received an honourable mention.

Audience Award - Best Feature Film

For the first time, there were three German feature-length films in the festival programme, all of which were among the best four films in the audience vote and thus showed that genre cinema definitely has a future in Germany. The winner by a wide margin, however, was the crowd pleaser HOLY SHIT! which the team attended in large numbers for its world premiere. The hall, which was sold out at 75% capacity, went wild and was literally turned upside down. Director Lukas Rinker was unable to accept the "Golden Razor Blade" himself, but his producer Tonio Kellner ordered overjoyed greetings at the award ceremony. Second place went to the American puppet horror comedy FRANK & ZED, while third and fourth place went to the German films ARBORETUM and DAWN BREAKS BEHIND THE EYES.

Jury Award - Méliès D'Argent

The most prestigious prize of the festival, however, is without a doubt the Mèliès D'Argent, which HARD:LINE is allowed to present as the only German member of the Méliès International Festivals Federation (MIFF). The winner of the Regensburg competition will compete against the winning films of all other Federation festivals in October for the award for best European fantastic short film. The jury of the ninth HARD:LINE Film Festival was delighted to present this prestigious award to the Spanish production SURVIVERS. Director Carlos Gómez-Trigo was not able to be there himself, but did not miss the opportunity to send a video greeting to the Danube.

Jury statement

Honorable Mention: O
O impressed us with its impressive, abstract style and stayed in our minds for a long time, as it vividly lets us experience and empathise with how an addiction takes hold of you and doesn't let go - what it's like when you're forced to watch what you're doing to yourself.

Main prize: SURVIVERS
Carlos Gómez-Trigo manages the feat of creating a dense scenario in only seven minutes with astonishingly few means, which is gripping from beginning to end and makes you laugh as well as cry. SURVIVERS presents three survivors of a global apocalypse at the end of their scientific careers. Crisp dialogue flies from one red-glowing helmet to another in a car parked at an empty petrol station. The great question of the pandemic years rises from the argument that erupts below them. When will the time come? And if it cannot be calculated exactly, do we choose risk or are we patient? SURVIVERS is for all those who doubt humanity a little bit now and then - no matter how you spell "human condition". Great entertainment in the smallest possible format. Hats or helmets off!

This article was written by
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We have been teaching Regensburg the fear since 2010. HARD:LINE is an independent platform for extreme cinema. The extremely good cinema! You can also find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.