Teheran, May, 1st, 2017 (SIGNIS). At the Fajr International film festival in Teheran, the Interfaith Jury prize was given to "Knife in the clear water" by Wang Xuebo, China.
The jury awarded the film “for the neat exploration of life and death in a remote village, where the basic relations mirror the universal human experience. Through pure cinematic means this debut movie achieves a stunning visual beauty which conveys authentic spiritual values, crossing cultural and religious borders.”
More informations about the movie "Knife in the clear water": Ma Zishan (Yang Shengcang) is an aging Muslim farmer, part of the Hui minority. He and his family eke out an existence farming on an arid moonscape in China’s northwest Ningxia province. Forty days after his wife dies, Ma must perform a memorial service and invite his village neighbours to a feast. He and his adult son make the difficult decision to sacrifice their aging cow for the service, but the cow soon stops eating and drinking, as if in anticipation of its slaughter.
The film offers an un-exoticized depiction of everyday Islamic ritual in rural China; prayers, ablutions and other practices radiate a sense of inner tranquility. Made with astonishingly expressive non-professional actors, this film mixes super-reality with magical intensity. It has a stark spiritual purity, and beauty infuses every shot. (Shelly Kraicer)