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Winners & Special Mentions: Austin Lift-Off Film Festival 2022

A massive thank you to everyone who participated in the Austin Lift-Off Film Festival 2022. It's been absolutely fantastic having so many filmmakers involved and seeing the global support for true indie film...

The judges' votes have been counted and added to the audience's feedback. Huge congratulations to the filmmakers who screened with us!  A particular well done to the following films...


Festival Winners

Best Film

(next screening with Lift-Off in Los Angeles 2022)


Dir. Mel Mah
Synopsis: After discovering she's pregnant, a young painter reaches out to her estranged mother to seek advice on whether or not she’s ready to raise her own child.

Best Film

(next screening with Lift-Off in Los Angeles 2022)

Arkansas, etc.

Dir. Brandon Tyler
Synopsis: The lives of a runaway and a loner spiral when they cross paths.

Season Award Nominations

The Lift-Off Season Awards is an annual event that celebrates the very best of indie film. Following each Lift-Off film festival, films that have excelled in their respective category are nominated and invited to attend the prestigious Lift-Off Season Awards, culminating at the end of the Lift-Off season. Click here for more information about the Lift-Off Season Awards.

Turbo Cola

Dir. Luke Covert
Synopsis:"AUSTIN MORRIS is foregoing the biggest party of the year to work overtime at the Quality Mart, much to the chagrin of his new girlfriend, Mary Jane. What his friends don't know, however, is that his true plan is the rob the store's ATM with his stoner side-kick, SWEARSKY, so that he can be with the girl of his dreams. This New Year's Eve...1999...will change everything."

Best Feature Live Action Narrative


Dir. Ryan Lovell
Synopsis: In May of 2019, DJ Stewart was filling out onboarding paperwork for his new job when he suddenly had a seizure. Waking up in the hospital, DJ was told he had a glioblastoma multiforme (GBM)—a malignant Grade IV brain tumor that reproduces rapidly and is difficult to remove.

Nominated for Best Short Documentary

Arkansas, etc.

Dir. Brandon Tyler
Synopsis: The lives of a runaway and a loner spiral when they cross paths.

Nominated for Best Cinematography

Audience Choice

The Audience Choice award is given to the filmmakers whose film received the most votes during the festival. The filmmakers will be invited to join us on the Lift-Off YouTube channel for a directors commentary roundtable. Join in the conversation as we delve deeper into each film.

La Fiera: The Piera Rodriguez Story

Dir. Spencer Trinwith
Synopsis: You ask your child what they want to be when they grow up. They look at you and say: I want to be fighter in the UFC. For Piera Rodriguez, a contract with the UFC has always been a distant dream. Now, after seven years her one shot to be on the UFC roster has finally arrived. After a tumultuous journey from Venezuela through Panama and finally arriving in Los Angeles, her economic and emotional hurdles strengthen her dream and determination.


Dir. Tyler Mann
Synopsis: In a dystopian future where everyone is powered by batteries, Jace and Em decide to risk everything at the hope of a better future.

The People Who Live There

Dir. Connor O'Brien
Synopsis: This documentary provides a whimsical and detailed picture of a unique city called Lakeland. It explores the unexpected and rich stories of historic homes and the people who live there.

Bad Romance

Dir. Chad Hamilton
Synopsis: Bad Romance is a comedic neo-noir about a socially awkward lonely guy, Rob, who attempts to track down the man who killed his wife -- but not for revenge, just to make friends and find love along the way.