Pancouver-Logo

Become a Cultural Navigator

Become a Cultural Navigator

Mà Sài Gòn (Mother Saigon) filmmaker Khoa Lê wins Colin Low Award for Best Canadian Director at DOXA fest

The gentle opening scene in the DOXA film Má Sài Gòn (Mother Saigon) lasts for seven minutes.

Films about Vietnam’s LGBTQ community and a Middle Eastern family in exile are among this year’s DOXA Documentary Film Festival prize winners.

The Directors Guild of Canada presented the Colin Low Award for Best Canadian Director to Khoa Lê for Mà Sài Gòn (Mother Saigon). Jury members Elad Tzadok, Linday McIntyre, and Nisha Platzer praised Lê’s “impeccable balance between his powerful and unwavering visual aesthetic, the delicate relationships he built with the community, and the empathy he managed to portray on screen”.

“His thoughtful  approach translates to a captivating and dynamic cinematic experience,” the jurors added.

Lê, a queer artist based in Montreal, states in his bio that he “always maintains humanity in the heart of my approach”.

His film shared intimate portraits of a range of LGBTQ people living in Ho Chi Minh City. (Read Pancouver’s article on Mà Sài Gòn [Mother Saigon] here.)

Special mention in this category went to Rodrigue Jean and Arnaud Valada’s 2012/Through the Heart.

“This telling documentary is an unflinching portrait of the struggle against entrenched colonialism and state oppression which, despite the 10 years that have passed since, bears a striking resemblance to present-day struggles in the face of policing tactics and policies in BC and across North America,” the DOXA website states.

Notes on Displacement
Notes on Displacement tracks the harrowing journey of refugees seeking a better life in Germany.

Notes on Displacement wins DOXA feature prize

The DOXA Feature Documentary Award went to Khaled Jarrar’s Notes on Displacement. The filmmaker followed a family of refugees as they embark on a perilous journey from the Greek Island of Lesbos in search of a better life in Germany.

“Jarrar’s bravery and compassion create a deeply human look at the Syrian and Palestinian individuals who find themselves forced yet again to migrate in search of safety,” jurors Dina Al-Kassim, Kent Donguines, and Nadia Shihab concluded.

Special mention in this category went to Nishtha Jain’s The Golden Thread, an empathetic documentary about low-wage Bengali textile workers. In addition, Theo Montoya’s Anhell69 received a special mention “for its hypnotic hybrid approach to storytelling”, as well as for the power it gives to queer Colombian communities.

The full list of DOXA awards is available on its website.

Follow Pancouver on Twitter @PancouverMedia.

Take Action Now

Pancouver fuels creativity and promotes a more inclusive society. You can contribute to support our mission of shining a spotlight on diverse artists. Donations from within Canada qualify for a tax receipt.

Share this article

Charlie Smith

Charlie Smith

Pancouver editor Charlie Smith has worked as a Vancouver journalist in print, radio, and television for more than three decades.

Subscribe

Tags

Related Articles

The Society of We Are Canadians Too created Pancouver to foster greater appreciation for underrepresented artistic communities. A rising tide of understanding lifts all of us.

We would like to acknowledge that we are gathered on the traditional and unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam Indian Band), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish Nation), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh Nation). With this acknowledgement, we thank the Indigenous peoples who still live on and care for this land.

The Society of We Are Canadians Too created Pancouver to foster greater appreciation for underrepresented artistic communities. A rising tide of understanding lifts all of us.

© 2023 The Society of We Are Canadians Too Privacy Policy | Terms and Conditions

We would like to acknowledge that we are gathered on the traditional and unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. With this acknowledgement, we thank the Indigenous peoples who still live on and care for this land.