A film by Vietnamese female director Nguyen Hoang Diep beat seven other foreign debut features to be selected as the  Best Film at the 2014 Venice International Film Festival by the Federation of Film Critics of Europe and Mediterranean (FEDORA).

Dap Canh Giua Khong Trung (Flapping in the Middle of Nowhere) tells the story of Huyen (played by Nguyen Thuy Anh), a girl who needs money for an abortion after her boyfriend deserts her. She then turns to a transsexual close friend for help and begins to find happiness with a man (by Tran Bao Son) who has a special passion for pregnant women.

Produced by local company VBlock Media in co-ordination with partners from France, Germany and Norway, the film won acclaim from foreign critics.

"Poised in its mise-en-scene, poetic in employing visual panache and precise in capturing details which hint at the harsh realities of inner-city life, Diep's film offers a sensitive, sensual and surprisingly candid representation of sexuality and adolescence in Vietnam," The Hollywood Reporter wrote.

Director Diep said, "I'm very happy because, together with my crew, we have added a special atmosphere and colour to our first full-length movie. We call that the atmosphere of the fifth season – not spring, summer, autumn or winter – but the season of loneliness, filled with feminine emotions."

As Diep is currently at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival to attend the screening of her film, actors Son and Anh accepted the Lion of the Future Award on her behalf. The movie also won a cash prize of 100,000 USD.

Local audiences can see the film at the Hanoi International Film Festival, slated in November.-VNA