Ayako Fujitani as Aki in "Man From Remo," dir. Dave Boyle ©Tiger Industry Films

Ayako Fujitani as Aki in “Man From Remo,” dir. Dave Boyle
©Tiger Industry Films

(Relaxnews) – Asian-American crime thriller “Man from Reno” wins the Los Angeles Film Festival’s Narrative Award, with “Stray Dog” and “Los Angeles” also scooping jury awards; category winners include French-Chinese project “Butter Lamp” and France’s “The Runaway.”

Directed by Dave Boyle of “White on Rice” and “Surrogate Valentine,” produced by Ko Mori, starring Ayako Fujitani (Michel Gondry’s “Tokyo!”) in the lead role, and Pepe Serna (“Scarface,” “Black Dahlia”) as co-star, “Man from Reno” follows Japanese crime writer Aki as she becomes embroiled in a San Francisco murder case.

“Its exploration of barriers of age, language and success set against a noir plot line infuses a pop energy into the well observed portrayal of its unique characters,” wrote the festival jury.

“Stray Dog,” meanwhile, is the next up from “Winter’s Bone” director Debra Granik. The moving documentary features biker and Vietnam vet Ron Hall as he travels from Missouri to the Vietnam Memorial in Washington DC and back again and won the LAFF’s Documentary Award.

The festival’s third $5,000 prize went to “Los Ángeles” in the LA Muse category. The Damian John Harper film has young main character Mateo seek entry to the US from Mexico, employing multiple perspectives and first-time actors to great effect.

Also among the winners were “Butter Lamp,” a Chinese-French collaboration, filmed in Tibetan with English subs, which won Best Animated or Experimental Short Film, and French short “La Fugue” [en. The Runaway], centered around youth work and criminality, was the LAFF’s Best Narrative Short Film.

A full list of winners can be found at: filmindependent.org/press/press-releases/winners-announced-for-2014-los-angeles-film-festival/

cp/kc