Mudbound - MVFF Audience Favorite Award
Garrett Hedlund, Mary J. Blige and Rob Morgan appear in Mudbound by Dee Rees.

Dee Rees’ Mudbound has been voted overall audience favorite at the prestigious Mill Valley Film Festival.

Other favorites include Aaron Sorkin’s Molly’s Game, Greta Gerwig’s well received Lady Bird, Santiago Rizzo’s Quest and Jessica M. Thompson’s The Light of the Moon.

Mudbound, which tells the story of two men returning home from WW II only to face racism and the rigors of adjusting to post-war life, has been winning over critics and audiences alike. While playing Toronto at TIFF, The Globe and Mail called it a “timely, searing look at race in the U.S.” In another positive review, Variety said, “The white characters in Mudbound are products of their time, and there’s an honesty to that which sometimes supersedes choices that might otherwise have been more satisfying or dramatic.”

During the opening weekend at MVFF, Dee Rees and members of her production crew participated on a panel discussion about female filmmakers during the “Mind the Gap” one day summit. There Rees demonstrated that she was an auteur on the rise: confident, engaging, opinionated. And very entertaining — especially when talking about her pre-film career as a consumer goods employee on a perpetual performance improvement program.

Mudbound stars Carey Mulligan, Garrett Hedlund, and Jason Clarke. Rees co-wrote the screenplay with Virgil Williams. Look for the movie to hit theaters here in the U.S. next month.

Other MVFF audience favorites, from world cinema and documentary categories include: Goodbye, Christopher Robin (Simon Curtis), The Invisibles (Claus Räfle), An Act of Defiance (Jean van de Velde), The Divine Order (Petra Volpe), Kim Swims (Kate Webber), City of Joy (Madeleine Gavin), and Faces Places (Agnès Varda).

The 40th anniversary of the Mill Valley Film Festival closed last Sunday with the Bay Area premiere of Lady Bird.