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April 27, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Rachel Mwanza in War Witch

Two films about children whose lives have been impacted by political upheaval have won top awards at New York’s Tribeca Film Festival. War Witch, which tells of the plight of a 12-year-old girl abducted by rebels in her sub-Saharan country, won the jury prize for best narrative feature, while its young star, Rachel Mwanza won the prize for best actress. The two young male stars of the Cuban film Una Noche received a joint award in the actor category, but only one showed up to claim it. Two of the film’s actors, co-winner Javier Nuñez Florian and female costar Anailin de la Rua de la Torre apparently defected at Miami airport on their way to the New York festival. The other male lead, Dariel Arrechada, did claim his award. In a case of life imitating art, the movie concerns three Cuban teenagers who defect to the United States. The World Before Her, which contrasts women participating in the Miss India beauty pageant with those living in a fundamentalist Hindu girls camp, won the award for best documentary.