'Saigon, I Love You' cleans up Vietnamese Oscars

By An Nguyen   April 9, 2017 | 08:15 pm PT
'Saigon, I Love You' cleans up Vietnamese Oscars
A scene from "Saigon, I Love You".
The film, in the format of 'Paris, Je T'Aime' and 'New York, I Love You,' wins the Golden Kite in an award show that favors safe choices.

A romantic comedy about five love stories in Saigon has swept the board at Vietnam's most prestigious event for movies, winning the coveted Golden Kite after beating 18 other features.

Saigon, Anh Yeu Em," or "Saigon, I Love You," also took home the prizes for best supporting actor, best screenplay, best production design and best music on Sunday.

The victory of the movie, directed by Ly Minh Thang, did not come as a surprise at the end of a good night for many other box office hits. Director Luong Dinh Dung, whose small arthouse film "Father and Son" only won a consolation award, dismissed the results as unfair.

"Saigon, I Love You" connected well with the local audience and critics when it hit theaters last fall. The film, with an ensemble cast, has been praised for familiar yet effective storylines that promote inclusiveness and diversity. Many also love how the city's vibrant culture and Vietnamese traditional southern opera cai luong are featured in the film.

12 Chom Sao: Ve Duong Cho Yeu Chay” (12 Zodiac: Five Steps of Love), another romantic comedy, won best director, best leading actress and best supporting actress.

The best actor and best cinematography went to the soccer movie “Sut” (Shoot).

This year’s competition received 145 entries in a wide range of categories, including 19 feature films, all productions of privately owned studios.

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