Karen Winthers dokumentar om nynazistiske miljøer ble tildelt hele tre priser under avslutningsseremonien på DOK Leipzig – en av de store og eldste europeiske dokumentarfilmfestivalene (se trailer til slutt i saken).
Exit ble tildelt Gedanken-Aufschluss-Preis, Dokumentarfilmpreis des Goethe-Instituts og Young Eyes Film Award.
Som i debutfilmen The Betrayal foretar Karen Winther en personlig reise i Exit, som er produsert av Sant & Usant ved Eirin Gjørv. Filmen utforsker noen av de samme problemstillingene som i aktuelle Hatets Vugge og I møte med fienden, men skiller seg på et vesentlig punkt: Regissøren var selv involvert i nynazist-miljøet som tenåring. Derfor blir dette en personlig reise med motsatt fortegn; mens Bustnes og Khan forsøker å komme nærmere de som hater har Winther som svært ung tatt del i dette hatefulle fellesskapet. Det gir henne mulighet til å gi oss andre og kanskje enda sjeldnere perspektiver: Hva gjør at noen trekkes inn i slike miljøer? Og finnes det en vei ut? (les mer fra Rushprints omtale av filmen).
Her er juryenes begrunnelser for tildelingene:
Gedanken-Aufschluss-Preis: The film introduces persons dropping out of the right-wing scene in the USA, in Norway and in Germany as well as a former representative of the radical-islamistic scene in France. In times of islamistic terror, the nationalsocialist underground (“NSU”) and right-wing propagandistic policies in the whole of Europe, including Germany, the film has managed to convince us that these obviously very different worlds have, after all, more things in common than expected. Because the most important parallel, and revealing, by the way, as far as our project is concerned, was that the various scenes the film introduces are seeking to impose their vision of the world, or ideology, with radical and unconstitutional means based on arms. By choosing this film as the prize winner we wanted to take a stand against violence and in favor of humanity.
Dokumentarfilmpreis des Goethe-Instituts: As a former left-wing and right-wing activist Karen Winther is looking for other dropouts who have left extreme ideologies behind, in order to find out how they cope with their violent past now. On her trip through Europe and America the director shows us the far-reaching consequences of such a decision. It is impressive how Karen Winther depicts the long way from de-radicalization to re-humanization. This begins with self-recognition and self-responsibility, although it also needs external support, in order to continue on this path. A film that opens the door to an uncomfortable interspace.
Young Eyes Film Award: When filmmaker Karen Winther finds a box of propaganda materials while moving house, she is confronted with her right-wing past. Both shocked and ashamed, she sets out on a search for other dropouts, hoping to find answers. In intimate interviews they disclose their past activities as extremists. With its long fixed settings, the camera focuses on the people questioned in front of it. Sequences of muffled, hammering tones amplify the emotional depictions of their previous, violent and hateful lives. Their fear of vengeance, but above all their shame about their past, is omnipresent in every sentence they speak. The politically most topical film does not only present the dangers which emanate from extremist movements, it also shows us that it is possible to drop out from them with bravery and courage.
For debuten Betrayal fikk Karen Winther i 2011 Best Student Film på IDFA, Student Doc Award ved Sheffield Doc/Fest 2012 og New Nordic Talent Award på Nordisk Panorama 2012. Det er altså samme tematikk Winther fortsetter å utforske i Exit.