Competitive Sections

FEST 2019 will have its usual wide range of competitive sections; rewarding and exhibiting some of the most ground-breaking works from around the world. Each section focuses on a particular genre and format, even if all of them seasoned by an incessant search for new film discourses and new artistic interpretations, a search that is always conscient that it is within the so-called “New Cinema” world that this endless quest persists in its purest form.  


Golden Lynx Competition

The Golden Lynx competition focuses on first or second feature films by some of the most outstanding and innovative new figures in the international film scene. Born out of our old Silver Castle competition, this new format has exhibited some truly inspirational works in the fields of Fiction and Documentary, by figures such as Kyle Patrick Alvarez (USA), Rúnar Rúnnarson (Iceland), Sebastian Silva (Chile), Dome Karuskoski (Finland), Rob Savage (UK), David Pablos (Mexico), Rungano Nyoni (UK) and Ian Lorenos (Philipines), among many others. Being an unique opportunity to find out the most inspiring features of the moment, this competition represented a major boost for films such as “The Fits” by Anna Rose Holmer (USA), “Victoria” by  Maya Vitkova (Bulgaria), “Dancing with Maria” by Ivan Gregolet (Argentina), “Mother of George” by Andrew Dosumnu (USA), or “Aloys” by Tobias Nolle (Switzerland).


Silver Lynx Competition

The Silver Lynx Competition is a short film competition that attempts to provide a launch board for new filmmakers under the age of 35, covering four different formats: Fiction, Documentary, Animation and Experimental Cinema. Names such Govinda Van Maele (Luxembourgh), Christos Massalas (Greece), Mati Diop (France), Adriano Valerio (Italy) or Lukasz Ostalski (Poland), who are now exploding on the international scene, gave their first steps in this competition. Throughout the years this section has been the target of much praise, providing a deep look at extraordinary pieces of filmmaking such as “Everything will be ok” by Patrick Vollrath (Germany), “Afro” by Ninja Thyberg (Sweden), “La Reina” by Manuel Abramovich (Argentina), “Come and Play” by Daria Belova (Russia), “Leidi” by Simon Mésa Soto (Colombia), “Fragments” by Aga Woszczynska (Poland), or “The Meadow” by Jela Hasler (Switzerland), among hundreds of others.


Portuguese Grand Prix

The Portuguese scene obviously takes a stand-out position at FEST, with films spread across the program, as well as a special competition focused just on local filmmakers. Salomé Lamas, Basil da Cunha, Pedro Almeida, Diogo Costa Amarante, Jorge Quintela, Rita Quelhas, Ico Costa, Pedro Lino, Mariana Gaivão, Bruno Carnide, Ricardo Leite or Bernardo Lopes, you name it, the names that have turned Portugal into a hotbed of cinematic creativity have all been through our scope. “Caça Revoluções” by Margarida Rego, “Batrachian’s Ballad” by Leonor Teles, “Born in Luanda” by Cristele Alves Meira, or “Ascenção” by Pedro Peralta are just a few titles of some of the local films that have left a mark on our audience in the past few years. 2019 will once again put the new national scene under the spotlight.



A festival that aims at discovering all the freshest talents in filmmaking could not possible stray off too far from academic circles, where the new creative minds are incubating. Through a widespread network of film and audio-visual schools and institutes from across the planet, built through the last 15 years, FEST created NEXXT, an all-inclusive academic competition that intends to let the world know that brilliance knows no age. As in previous years, 2019 will once again bring us a series of works from students of prestigious institution such as UNATC (Romania), Wadja School (Poland), ECIB (Spain), EICAR (France), Centro de Capacitacion Cinematografica (Mexico), ESTC (Portugal), DBS Film (Germany), Moholy-Nagy University of Arts and Design Budapest (Hungary), London Film School (UK), Baltic Film and Media School (Estonia), Prague Film School (Czech Republic), KASK (Belgium), Dublin Institute of Technology (Ireland), DFFB (Germany), University of Creative Arts (UK) or Universidade Lusofona (Portugal), among many others.




Originally a non-competitive series of screenings for children, FESTinha has been one of the fastest expanding sections of our event, opening the festival to a wide new audience. Three different juries composed by children or young teens of different ages, will analyse several blocks of short films and a series of feature length productions finely tuned for each age group. Through a specialized workshop method, the participating jury members will begin to learn how to look at a film from a different perspective, considering all sort of aspects related to filmmaking, narrative construction, semiotics and a series of other factors. And in the end, this fresh and vibrant new jury will reward 3 different productions with the now coveted FESTinha awards.