It's election day in America, so get out there and vote! While you're waiting for those results, the Indie Memphis Film Festival has announced the results of their own polls for the best films of the 2020 festival. Everyone who purchased a pass or ticket for the online and outdoor screenings was given a ballot to rate the films on a scale of 1-5.
The big winners were director Emma Seligman's comedy Shiva Baby, which took home the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature, and director Tali Yankelevich's experimental film My Darling Supermarket, which took home the Audience Award for Best Departures Feature. Both Shiva Baby and My Darling Supermarket had previously won the Jury Awards in their respective categories at the awards ceremony last Wednesday night. Camrus Johnson and Pedro Piccinini's animated short "Grab My Hand: A Letter To My Dad" also won both Jury and Audience awards in its category. Director Zaire Love scored a rare split two-fer by winning the Audience Award for Best Hometowner Documentary Short for "The Black Men I Know" after winning the Jury Award for Best Hometowner Short for her film "Road To Step."
The Audience Award for Best Hometowner Feature went to Anwar Jamison's bi-continental romantic comedy Coming to Africa. Jamison's film prevailed despite having its original premiere screening, which was scheduled for the riverfront, postponed due to stormy weather.
The audience ballots chose What Do You Have To Lose? for Best Documentary Feature, directed by Dr. Trimiko Melancon. What Do You Have to Lose? is the Rhodes College professor's first feature film.
The Audience Award for Best Hometowner Narrative Short went to the "The Little Death," a personal drama about miscarriage written and directed by husband and wife team Justin and Ariel Harrison.
For the Best Sounds Feature, awarded for the always-crowded category of music films, the audience chose Andy Black's documentary Shoe: A Memphis Musical Legacy.
The Audience Award for Best Documentary Short went to "Still Processing," a moving experimental documentary by Sophy Romvari in which she filmed her real-time reaction to finding lost pictures of her two brothers, who had recently passed away. The voters awarded Best Departures Short to Amin Mahe's "Letter To My Mother."
For the music video categories, Lewis Del Mar's song "The Ceiling," directed by rubberband, won the National Audience award. The Hometowner Audience Award went to Louise Page's "Paw In The Honey," directed by Laura Jean Hocking.
The audience voters chose Hisonni Johnson's "Take Out Girl" for Best Poster Design.
The winners were informed of their awards via a surprise Zoom call. You can watch their reactions, which range from the funny to the tearful, in this video.