• The Norwegian production directed by Ole Giæver, which narrates the struggle of the Saami people to defend their river and its recognition in Norway in the seventies, receives the award for Best Fiction Feature Film

  • The Canadian feature film by Julie Elien, which addresses mining looting in Mexico, has been recognized as Best Documentary Feature Film

  • The Italian production “Riscaldamento Locale”, by Manuel Vitali, and the Spanish “Puyuelo”, by Sara Sarrablo Asensio, have won Best International Fiction Short Film and Documentary, respectively

  • The awards in a Valencian key, Best Short Film and Best Short Film Script, have gone to “Pasando Teruel”, by Manuel Omonte, and “Troleig”, by Luis E. Pérez Cuevas

Norwegian production Let the River Flowof Ole Giæver, and the Canadian The White Guardof Julie Elien, films that address from different perspectives the struggle of the indigenous population to defend their community against the threat of large energy corporations, have been awarded the best feature film awards in the fiction and documentary categories, respectively, of the XV edition of the Valencia International Film and Human Rights Festival, Humans Fest, organized by Fundación por la Justicia since 2009.

The awards of the XV Humans Fest were announced this Saturday, June 8, in an event that took place at the MuVIM, where nearly 200 people from the cultural and social sphere gathered to accompany the awards ceremony, in a gala presented by the À Punt journalist Sara Garcia Lopez.


Ole Giæver, film director, screenwriter and actor saami from Norway, relates in Let the River Flow the fight of his people against the construction of a large dam in Alta and, at the same time, for their own recognition as a town in Norway in the 1970s. The jury, made up of the filmmakers Elena Escura, Tess Van Bommel y Rafa Molés, has chosen Let the River Flow “for its solidity as an audiovisual story, based on a script that not only delves into the main theme but also branches out and delves into other themes, such as the concept of identity or roots.” Furthermore, he has valued “the organic construction of a strong character, who experiences an inner journey about her roots and a profound transformation, a woman whom we follow throughout the film going through her emotions, well told and staged.”

The jury of the Humans Fic section has also awarded a Special Mention to the Spanish production Red rooster, feature-length fiction debut by the Valladolid filmmaker Enrique García-Vázquez, “for the freshness of the story and the originality that permeates the entire film.” The jury was “impressed” by “the naturalness of the actresses –Pablos Pine y Lucia Lobato-, which we undoubtedly consider one of the strong points of the story", in addition to highlighting "how it establishes a mosaic of micro-stories in the town, which genuinely capture the rural essence and the feeling of returning home." Enrique García-Vázquez collected this award at the closing gala held this Saturday at the MuVIM.

For its part, The White Guard, a title that refers to Mexican organized crime groups paid by mining companies to maintain control of the environment, explores the mutually beneficial relationship between large corporations, the government and the cartels that are taking down more and more activists. The jury has chosen the Canadian director's proposal Julie Elien as Best Documentary Feature Film for “the relevance of the topic and its clear relationship with climate change, indicating some of the causes and very explicitly the environmental, economic and social consequences it has in countries where large corporations exploit natural resources.”

Likewise, the jury made up of the filmmakers Almudena Verdes y Gabi Ochoa and the activist Nuria Baeza, highlights “the diversity of voices and realities presented provides a complete and enriching vision,” in addition to “in its cinematographic aspects we discover a broad and diverse landscape, getting to know through images places virgin to our eyes,” discovering “in images and sounds a unique shape and a clear look.”

The White Guard has premiered for the first time in Spain thanks to the Humans Fest and from today until Sunday the 16th it can be seen in the festival's online programming. 


The award for Best Fiction Short Film has gone to Global Riscaldamento, Italian production directed by Manuel Vitali, for “its poetic narrative, its beauty in the cinematographic look, its visual creativity, its elegance without artifice and its ability to transmit emotions and sensations that go beyond the screen and directly affect the viewer,” according to the section's jury, which has been made up of the actress Maite Gil, the filmmaker Navarro Sea and the activist Miguel Crespo. This jury has also valued “the way it treats the drama of climate change with that skill and that sense of acid humor, which introduces us even further, if possible, into reality, and for the excellent fusion of music and sound.” .

This jury has decided to award a special mention in this competitive category to the short Lion Dreamsof Jordi López Navarro, “for the wonderful story of survival, which borders on magical realism, and for its impeccable technique and photography, make this film deserve a special mention.”

On the other hand, Puyuelo was the Best Documentary Short Film, an award that was collected at the closing gala by its director, Sara Sarrablo Asensio. The jury, made up of the filmmakers Carlos Laullon y Pepa Sastre and the activist  Marc Ferri He has chosen it for "the simplicity and humanity with which it deals with the problem of depopulation in the Pyrenees, contrasting the visions of the old neighbors against the new settlers." Furthermore, it has decided to grant a Special Mention to Where Children Don't Dream (Stefano Sbrulli, Peru/Italy), “for the way in which this heartbreaking story presents such a hard topic as contamination by heavy metals and its impact on childhood.”


The Official Section of Humans Fest includes two awards for Valencian creations. Thus, the award for Best Valencian Short Film has been awarded to Passing Teruelof Manuel Omonte, “for its technical quality, interest in the content and staging, connection with human rights, current relevance and emotional impact on viewing,” in the words of the jury formed by the filmmakers Coke Arijo, Claudia Estrada, Iván Fernández de Córdoba y Honorato Ruiz, which has also decided to give a mention to the 13of Mariam Zelaia, for its portrait of “the current reality of sexuality in adolescence.”

For its part, the EDAV award for Best Valencian Short Film Script went to Trolleyof Luis E. Pérez Cuevas, for a structure and a script that work perfectly to create a story that tells the complicated situation that single mothers or single-parent families face when faced with the complicated transition to adolescence in a time when screens, social networks and the likes "They seem to be above the precarious situation of the family environment."


Humans Fest has a historical section within its official competition: 1 minute, 1 right, whose objective is to promote cinema as a tool for defending human rights among Valencian students. This year it has been possible thanks to the participation of students from Comenius Center Educatiu, IES Number 1 of Requena, the Degree in Audiovisual Communication of the Campus of the Universitat Politècnica de València in Gandia and the CEIP Angelina Carnicer. Among the 24 works presented, through public voting, the winner was Zarwa, made by students of the CEIP Angelina Carnicer from Valencia. 


Humans Fest celebrated its 15th edition from May 30 to June 8. During these days they have been projected more than 40 movies fiction and documentaries from four continents to show citizens how to fight against climate change from different parts of the world, as well as multiple initiatives in defense of territory from the local to the international level.

One of the big news this year has been the launch of Humans Media (www.humansmedia.org), a platform of its own cinema on demand which allows us to expand the scope of the festival, making it accessible online for people who cannot attend and for all of Spain. A selection of the films participating in the Official Section of the 15th edition of Humans Fest, two other documentaries screened out of competition and the winner of the last edition, the Mexican documentary Kenya, will be available until June 16 with a one-time subscription of 5 euros.

Furthermore, thanks to a collaboration agreement between Fundación por la Justicia and Fundación ELEVEN, three days of cinema have been held with audio description, so that people with visual disabilities have been able to enjoy them, and four activities have had the presence of a sign language interpreter.

Added to all this are multiple activities in which they have collaborated until 80 activists from more than 30 entities different. This has been the case of, for example, the so-called Vermouths Humans, a relaxed discussion to reflect with protagonists of different struggles for human rights.

In addition to the screenings, meetings and talks, the public will be able to visit the Tabacalera Building (C/ Amadeo de Saboya, 11) for free until June 16. photo exhibition African activism against climate change, an exhibition about first-person stories of activists and the environmental impact that changes the view usually given by the East African media.

For the third consecutive year, the cinema has been taken to the streets of the city for free with the “fresh” sessions in the courtyard of the Nuestra Señora de los Desamparados School, in the Nazaret neighborhood; in the Plaza Jardín de la Ermita, in the Orriols neighborhood and, for the first time, in the Garden of the Mayor's Office of El Saler.

Finally, together with La Filmoteca IVC, the cycle Against invasions, peace and justice, screening three Palestinian films with the presence of the Palestinian actor Ramzi Maqdisi and the activist Rawaa Abu Abdou, also Palestinian. Thus, like the Oscar-winning documentary in March, 20 days in Mariupol, a screening that had a large representation of the Ukrainian community in Valencia.

Humans Fest is part of the international Human Rights Film Network. Its 15th edition is celebrated thanks to the collaboration of the Second Vice Presidency and Department of Social Services, Equality and Housing, Diputació de València, Ajuntament de València, Institut Valencià de Cultura, Caixa Popular and Teika. For its part, the Valencian regional radio and television station, À Punt, is the official media of the festival.