HOLLYWOOD—24 March 2018. Hollywood International Independent Documentary Awards (HIIDA) has granted Awards of Recognition in two categories: Feature and Director for the Hungarian documentary DAUGHTER OF THE REVOLUTION and its director Tünde Tálas (July, 2017). The winning documentary is the story of a child survivor of the tragic 1956 Hungarian Revolution. The child becomes a refugee in America and ultimately an award-winning translator. Peter Hargitai, winner of the Landon Translation Prize from the Academy of American Poets, travels back to Hungary with his adult son 60 years later to recover his past. He reflects what it was like to be a child witness to man’s inhumanity to man, how seeing violence and death affected his life, and how, as a refugee, he had to learn to build bridges between languages, peoples and cultures. And how he had to write DAUGHTER OF THE REVOLUTION not only to rid himself of his demons but to regain his faith in humanity, and at the same time pay tribute to the brave women, some as young as 14, who had taken their fight for freedom to the streets of Budapest. He recalls the mass demonstrations, the massacres, and what it was like to be an innocent bystander caught in a crossfire: a metaphor for all child victims caught in the crosscurrents of violence and political strife. But his is also a story of a refugee who finds humanity beyond borders and nationality. Under the artful direction of Tünde Tálas scenes from the author’s book are animated and weaved into the narrative to bring history to life. Her film is structurally innovative, enriched by original scores and informed by historical and personal motifs that resonate with young people today who are starting their own revolution against violence. The lessons from the students of Budapest are both timely and timeless. This is the first time Hollywood has awarded a documentary about the Hungarian Revolution against Russian aggression.

Peter Hargitai
First Poet Laureate of Gulfport
Senior Lecturer, Retired
Department of English
Florida International University

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