As Far As I Can Walk, a contemporary re-imagining of a traditional medieval epic in which African migrants taking the role of Serbian national heroes, has won this year’s Crystal Globe as the best film of the 2021 Karlovy Vary Film Festival.
The film is the second feature from Serbian director Stefan Arsenijevic, Oscar-nominated for his 2003 short A)Torsion, following his full-length debut Love and Other Crimes (2008). The Karlovy Vary jury thought the 13-year gap between features was worth the wait, giving its top honor, as well as the accompanying €25,000 ($30,000) cash bursary for the 2021 Crystal Globe to Arsenijevic and his producer Strahinja Banovic. Ibrahim Koma also took Karlovy Vary’s best actor honor for his starring performance in the film.
As Far As I Can Walk is a co-production of Serbia’s Art&Popcorn, Luxembourg’s Les Films Fauves, France’s Surprise Alley, Bulgaria’s Chouchkov Brothers and Lithuania’s ArtBox. Belgrade-based Soul Food is selling the film worldwide.
Karlovy Vary’s special jury prize went to Every Single Minute, Erika Hnikova’s documentary about a family obsessed with raising the perfect child, while Dietrich Brüggemann took the festival’s best director honor for his German-language dramedy Nö.
Best actress honors went to Canadian Éléonore Loiselle for her starring performance in Nicolas Roy’s Wars, in which she plays a female soldier struggling in a male-dominated world.
Karlovy Vary’s audience award went to Zatopek, a sports drama from Czech director David Ondricek about a fateful meeting in 1968 between Australian runner Ron Clarke, at the time the world record holder, and his old friend and role model, legendary Czech long-distance runner Emil Zatopek.
The awards for the 2021 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival were handed out in a ceremony Saturday night.