“Waking Ned Devine Meets Mr. Ed” is how I describe Director Louise Osmond’s superbly crafted documentary Dark Horse. Dream Alliance is the “talking” horse that became the talk of the town in the village of Cefn Fforest in one of the poorest Welsh mining valleys, Gwent, north of Newport. The local Workingmen’s Club is the setting for the real life characters specifically Jan Vokes, a barmaid in the club, who has a burning desire to breed a champion racehorse. Aside from this quirky cast, Dream becomes his own pivotal character, a handsome devil, a rich chestnut color with white blaze and a deep gaze, intensely thoughtful and curious. Dark Horse was a runaway hit at Sundance 2015 winning the Audience Award in the World Cinema Documentary Competition.
Across the Sea (Deniz Seviyesi), a Turkish story of life, loving and living, written and directed by Esra Saydam and Nisan Dag, became an audience favorite at Slamdance 2015 winning Audience Award for Narrative Feature.