My Fathers, My Mother and Me (pictured), Paul-Julien Robert’s exploration of the experimental 1970s free-love commune he grew up in, has won the best doc prize at the London Film Festival.
The documentary is a portrait of Friedrichshof, one of the largest communes in Europe, which was founded by the Viennese Actionist Otto Mühl in the 1970s.
The film beat off competition from titles including Cutie and the Boxer, At Berkeley, Ukraine is Not a Brothel, Teenage, Manhunt and The Armstrong Lie, to take the festival’s Best Documentary Award, which is co-presented with the Grierson Trust.
Jury president Kate Ogborn said: “As a jury, we would like to recognise the bravery of Paul-Julien Robert for taking us on such a personal journey with My Fathers, My Mother and Me.
“It is a thought-provoking and disturbing film, intimate whilst also raising larger questions of power, parental responsibility and abuse. The incredible archive footage combined with the personal journey of a mother and son left us disturbed, angry and feeling that this is a film that deserves to be seen by a wider audience.”
The jury also commended Cutie and the Boxer for “the original and creative way in which the filmmakers crafted an intimate portrait of a relationship,” as well as Manhunt, which “gave the audience extraordinary access to usually unreachable secret intelligence operatives.”
The “exquisite cinematography” of Vitaly Mansky’s Pipeline was also recognised and commended.
Ogborn’s fellow jurors were Sky commissioning editor Chris Wilson, City Screen cinema programmer for City Screen, BBC newsreader Sophie Raworth, and Renegade Pictures CEO Alex Cooke.
The winners of the 57th London Film Festival Awards were announced at a ceremony on saturday (October 19).