The 47th Berlinale Forum is showing 43 films in its main programme, 29 of which as world premieres and 10 as international premieres. This year’s Special Screenings will be announced in a further press release.
This year’s programme shines a light on the sheer wealth of forms employed by the documentary, including films from Southeast Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa. The spectrum could hardly be broader here, encompassing institutional portraits, long-term observational projects, and works that employ participatory, narrative, essayistic, ethnographic, political and experimental approaches. These are joined by various hybrid forms that cannot be clearly categorised as either fiction or non-fiction. One recurring motif is that of landscape, which is seldom relegated to the status of backdrop, but rather frequently takes on a leading role.
The Forum Expanded curatorial team has now completed the 2017 selection. 44 artistic works from a total of 21 countries have been invited, including 28 films of various lengths, 15 installations and a performance. The opening of the group exhibition at the Akademie der Künste am Hanseatenweg already takes place on 8.2., one day before the start of the Berlinale. 13 video and sound installations are being shown there, once again supplemented by film screenings from 10.2. onwards. SAVVY Contemporary present the exhibition The Law of the Pursuer by Amos Gitai and the multichannel sound installation Lago by Joshua Bonnetta is being exhibited at the Marshall McLuhan Salon of the Embassy of Canada.
Almost exactly a year after the world premiere of Ulrike Ottinger’s most recent film, the 12-hour opus CHAMISSOS SCHATTEN, at the Berlinale Forum, Arsenal presents the four parts of her large-scale cinematic expedition to the Arctic, along Russia’s easternmost coast and the peninsula of Kamchatka on January 15, 22, 27 & 29. Each screening will be followed by a discussion with Ulrike Ottinger.
Inspired by the accounts of former explorers such as Alexander von Humboldt, Georg Wilhelm Steller, Reinhold und Georg Forster and Adelbert von Chamisso, Ottinger too kept a logbook, linking her own artistic and ethnographic viewpoint to the historical findings and visual depictions. So past and present meet and historical and cultural changes become visible. A field of tension emerges between the then and now, showing how inseparable the two are.
The selection process for the 12th Forum Expanded is currently being finalised. This year’s theme is "The Stars Down to Earth":
The search for ways to enable art to deal with an increasingly intangible reality forms an essential similarity between the selected works. Bringing one’s gaze back down to earth now seems more necessary than ever before. Yet how can one use film to take hold of something real when that very concept is ever harder to grasp? The films and installations in the programme approach this question by attempting to both look and listen as closely as possible.
BADEN BADEN by Rachel Lang will be released in German cinemas from December 29.
The film which screened in the 2016 Forum tells of Ana, who returns to Strasbourg to be close to her best friend and beloved grandmother after a job goes sour. Moving between a hopeless affair, a self-set task and various farewells, she looks for her place in the world.
VERFLUCHTE LIEBE DEUTSCHER FILM (DOOMED LOVE - A JOURNEY THROUGH GERMAN GENRE FILMS) by Dominik Graf and Johannes F. Sieverts can be seen in German cinemas as of now.
The Munich scene surrounding directors Klaus Lemke and Roland Klick produced wild films of a great physicality in the 70s and 80s, thus giving birth to a genre cinema that showed a Germany teetering on the abyss.
LIFE AFTER LIFE (ZHI FAN JE MAO) by Zhang Hanyi has received the Grand Prix of the International Film Festival TOKYO FILMeX.
The film, which premiered in this year's Forum programme, tells a quiet ghost story that unfolds in a scrarred landscape, where the world of the living feels akin to a strange netherworld. The jury argued: "This film explores the slow, painful death of villages in the Chinese countryside ― without sentimentality or easy nostalgia. And it does so with a startling gender twist. Each image burns itself into the memory."
TEMPESTAD by Tatiana Huezo, TALES OF TWO WHO DREAMT by Andrea Bussmann and Nicolás Pereda and HAVARIE by Philip Scheffner have received awards at the Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM). The jury of the International Feature Competion extended a Special Mention to TEMPESTAD. TALES OF TWO WHO DREAMT received a Special Mention of the National Competition. An HAVARIE was given the award for best editing. Shortly before, the film had already received the Award for Best International Feature at the Festival de Cinema Independente de Barcelona, L’Alternativa.
DUBINA DVA (DEPTH TWO) by Ognjen Glavonić has received the main award at Kassel DokFest, The Golden Key for the most impressive documentary by an up-and-coming filmmaker. The prize is worth 5,000 Euros.
In 1999, the Serbian Army had the bodies of murdered Kosovars transported to Serbia to be buried there in secret. Images of the route today are connected with testimonies in voiceover to create a piercing essay on the mechanics of war crimes.
arsenal distribution is releasing LES SAUTEURS – THOSE WHO JUMP by Moritz Siebert, Estephan Wagner and Abou Bakar Sidibé on November 17. In the film, which premiered in this year's Forum programme and screened at many international festivals since, Abou Bakar Sidibé documents his attempts to overcome the border between Melilla/Europe and Morrocco together with hundreds of other migrants from Sub-Sahara Africa. His subjective gaze is contrasted by abstract thermal images of the surveillance cameras.
HAVARIE by Philip Scheffner has received the main award of the Duisburger Filmwoche - the ARTE-Dokumentarfilmpreis worth 6.000 Euros.
The jurors Alejandro Bachmann, Pepe Danquart and Antje Ehmann said: "93 Minuten, eine Einstellung, die unentwegt ein Boot mit Flüchtlingen im Mittelmeer fixiert. 'Fixiert' scheint das richtige Wort auch für die ästhetische Erfahrung, die HAVARIE seinen Betrachtern zumutet: Im Zerdehnen der Zeit, im Insistieren eines Blicks, in der Monotonie der Formen und Farben im Bild entschleunigt der Film den Bilderwahnsinn rund um die sogenannte „Flüchtlingskrise“. Die mit diesem Blick verwandten Diskurse, Geschichten, Ereignisse und Trivialitäten durchkreuzen das Bild auf der Tonebene, verleihen dem Bild Tiefe und sprengen es zugleich über die Grenzen des Kaders hinaus auf. Wenn am Ende der einzige Fixpunkt im Bild – das Boot der Flüchtlinge – scheinbar spurlos verschwunden ist, bekommt man eine Idee davon, was es bedeutet, wenn etwas verlustig gegangen ist – auf dem Meer wie im Bild."
Quite a few titles from this year's Forum and Forum Expanded programme can be seen at the Duisburger Filmwoche taking place from November 7-13: HAVARIE by Philip Scheffner, RUDOLF THOME – ÜBERALL BLUMEN (RUDOLF THOME – FLOWERS EVERYWHERE) by Serpil Turhan, HOMO SAPIENS by Nikolaus Geyrhalter, DIE GETRÄUMTEN (THE DREAMED ONES) by Ruth Beckermann, LANDSTÜCK (PIECE OF LAND) by Volker Koepp and LA CUPOLA by Volker Sattel.
DIE GETRÄUMTEN (THE DREAMED ONES) by Ruth Beckermann, which premiered in this year's Forum programme and showed at many international film festivals since, is being released in selected German cinemas this week.
In the film two young actors, Anja Plaschg and Laurence Rupp, recite the correspondence between Ingeborg Bachmann and Paul Celan, which reveals their tragic love story over 20 years. The textual drama is channeled through the actors' voices, even as they sometimes leave their roles to discuss what the words do to them.
Holot is a detention center in the Israeli desert. It houses asylum-seekers from Eritrea and Sudan who can’t be sent back to their own countries, but who have no prospects in Israel either due to the country’s policies. Avi Mograbi and Chen Alon initiated a theater workshop with them, a process which Mograbi documented in his latest film BEIN GDEROT (BETWEEN FENCES), which premiered in this year's Forum programme.
On October 23, Avi Mograbi will present the film together with outtakes and other extra material at silent green.
RUDOLF THOME – ÜBERALL BLUMEN (RUDOLF THOME _ FLOWERS EVERYWHERE) by Serpil Turhan is being released by peripher Film on September 15. The film, which screened as special in this year's Forum programme, is a portrait "brimming with warmth, humour, and wit." (Birgit Kohler) "Rudolf Thome's idiosyncratic oeuvre was created with a continuity rare in German cinema – he has directed 28 feature-length films over more than four decades since 1968. The writing of the script for film no. 29 and the parallel efforts to secure financing form the thread that runs through this cinematic portrait, which consists wholly of conversations and observations around Thome’s home, a converted farm in Brandenburg. The filmmaker is nothing if not forthcoming, and the viewer has the opportunity to experience him in various other roles: as a gardener, a father, a cyclist, and a performer of his own persona."
Accompanying the relase, the fsk cinema in Berlin is showing three early works by Thome: "Detektive" (Germany 1968, 89'), "Rote Sonne" (Germany 1970, 90') and "Berlin Chamissoplatz" (Germany 1980, 112').
Several films from the Forum programme can be seen at this year's DokFilmWoche at Berlin's fsk and Sputnik cinema running from Septemver 1-7: HOMO SAPIENS by Nikolaus Geyrhalter (Austria 2016), RUDOLF THOME - ÜBERALL BLUMEN (RUDOLF THOME _ FLOWERS EVERYWHERE) by Serpil Turhan (Germany 2016), DIE GETRÄUMTEN (THE DREAMED ONES by Ruth Beckermann (Austria2016) and HOTLINE by Silvina Landsmann (Israel 2015).
As part of the series "German Film Festivals on tour" the Goethe Institute in Brussels and BOZAR Cinéma are presenting a selection of Forum films curated by Birgit Kohler from September 14-17: DIE GETRÄUMTEN (THE DREAMED ONES by Ruth Beckermann (Austria 2016, 89'), ELDORADO XXI by Salomé Lamas (Portugal/France 2016, 125'), HISTOIRE DE JUDAS by Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche (France 2015, 99') and QUEEN OF EARTH by Alex Ross Perry (USA 2015, 90'). All films will be presented by the directors and/or Birgit Kohler.
Three films from this year's Forum and Forum Expanded programme received awards at the T-Mobile New Horizons International Film Festival in Wrocław: the Grand Prix of the Internatiomal Competition and 20,000 euros were awarded to IN THE LAST DAYS OF THE CITY (AKHER AYAM EL MADINA) by Tamer El Said. The jury for the Films on Art International Competition awarded 10,000 euros to Jumana Manna for A MAGICAL SUBSTANCE FLOWS INTO ME. The same jury also singled out MUITO ROMANTICO by Melissa Dullius and Gustavo Jahn.
HAVARIE by Philip Scheffner has received a Special Mention at Festival International de Cinéma Marseille, FID.
The film which premiered in this year's Forum progamme is a three-minute video clip of a tiny dinghy floating in the Mediterranean extended to feature-length. The coastguard's radio broadcasts, the accounts of those possibly on the boat and the hobby filmmaker each leave their mark on the voiceover.
Laura Tonke has received the German Film Award as best main actress for her role in HEDI SCHNEIDER STECKT FEST (HEDI SCHNEIDER IS STUCK) by Sonja Heiss.
The film, which premiered as part of the Forum programme in 2015, tells of Uli, Hedi and Finn - a happy family, making ends meet with various odd jobs. Hedi in particular draws on humour to offset any negative experiences. Yet when she starts suffering panic attacks out of the blue, her everyday life slowly falls apart.
Three films from this year's Forum programme have received awards at DOK.fest Munich: MAKHDOUMIN (A MAID FOR EACH) by Maher Abi Samra got the Horizonte award endowed with 3.000 Euros, LES SAUTEURS (THOSE WHO JUMP) by Moritz Siebert, Estephan Wagner and Abu Bakar Sidibé received a Special Mention, and Tatiana Huezo's TEMPESTAD won the Arri Award worth 5.000 Euros for its outstanding camera work.
LES SAUTEURS (THOSE WHO JUMP) by Moritz Siebert, Estephan Wagner and Abou Bakar Sidibé has received the Amnesty International Award at the Millennium Docs Against Gravity Film Festival in Warsaw.
Hundreds of migrants mass on Morocco's Mount Gurugu in hope of jumping the fence into the Spanish enclave of Melilla. Malian migrant Abou films his surroundings there and finds pleasure in representing the battle for a life in dignity on his own terms.
LES SAUTEURS by Moritz Siebert, Estephan Wagner and Abou Bakar Sidibé and TEMPESTAD by Tatiana Huezo have been awarded at DOCUMENTAMADRID: LES SAUTEURS (THOSE WHO JUMP) won the second prize of the international competition, endowed with 5.000 Euros; TEMPESTAD received a Special Mention. Both films had had their world premieres as part of this year's Forum progamme.
arsenal distribution is releasing QUEEN OF EARTH by Alex Ross Perry on May 5. The film had its world premiere in the 2015 Forum and screened at numerous international film festival subsequently.
It tells of Catherine and Virginia who are best friends. Last year, Virginia wasn’t doing well, while it’s Catherine who’s struggling this year. Virginia’s parents own a lakeside cabin, the perfect place for a week of mutual wound licking. Sun pours in through the windows, framing the cool green of the trees outside. But this isn’t the refuge it seems and it’s not just the music that awakens the menace in the images. The ripples across the lake and the wan sunlight offer little comfort, to say nothing of the picture of a skull lying forgotten in a cupboard. Last year’s events keep crashing in upon the present, things weren’t good then and they aren’t better now. When the two women confide in one another, it’s like two separate monologues, the camera gliding between their strained faces as if they were one and the same. They otherwise stick to wry barbs, each criticizing the other’s privilege as they still cling on to their bond. As salad leaves wilt, men come and go, and tension gives way to hostility, what even remains of this friendship? Dark-ringed eyes alight with rage, a stream of quiet bile, one face cut into another, two true Queens of Earth. (James Lattimer)
Three films from this year and last year's Forum programme have been awarded at IndieLisboa: KATE PLAYS CHRISTINE by Robert Greene received the Special Jury Award, SHORT STAY by Ted Fendt got the FIPRECI Award, and FLOTEL EUROPA by Vladimir Tomic won both the Amnesty International Award and the Culturgest Universidades Award. All three films had received their world premieres at the Forum.
MAKHDOUMIN (A MAID FOR EACH) by Maher Abi Samra has received the main prize of the Human Rights Competition at the International Festival of Independent Film in Buenos Aires, BAFICI. The film, which had its world premiere as part of this year's Forum programme, examines the penomenon of housemaids from countries of the Global South which are widespread in the middle-class households of Lebanon. Conversations at a domestic labour agency reveal both the clients' sense of privilege and the exploitative conditions under which maids must work.
BADEN BADEN and RIO CORGO from this year's Forum programme have received the main prizes of the "Crossing Europe" Film Festival in Linz: BADEN BADEN by Rachel Lang got the award for best fiction film endowed with 10.000 Euros. RIO CORGO by Maya Kosa and Sergio da Costa received the Social Awareness Award for best documentary, worth 5.000 Euros.
TOZ BEZI (DUST CLOTH) by Ahu Öztürk from this year's Forum programme has received three awards at the International Film Festival in Istanbul: Apart from the Golden Tulip for the best film in the national competition and the award for best screenplay, Asiye Dinçsoy was awarded best actress.
The film tells of the precarious situation and friendship of two Kurdish women, who live in a rundown district on the edge of Istanbul, travelling into the centre to work. But beyond the personal story of their relationship and its conflicts, Ahu Öztürk also paints a picture of an entire society in which social and ethnic origins can be insurmountable obstacles.
LES SAUTEURS (THOSE WHO JUMP) by Moritz Siebert, Estephan Wagner and Abu Bakar Sidibé has received the International Feature Award at LICHTER Filmfest Frankfurt. The film was shown as part of a series of films addressing the subject of "borders". Jury members Max Linz, Barbara Schweizerhof and Hermann Vaske said the film shows "in freiem Experiment, mit auf allen Ebenen ungewissem Ausgang, was es bedeutet, vor den Toren der Festung Europa zu stehen. Eindrucksvoll erleben wir mit, wie schwer und gefährlich es ist, ihre mit Wärmebildkameras bewehrten Mauern zu überwinden."
We are happy to announce new arsenal distribution titles from this year’s Berlinale Forum program: BALIKBAYAAN #1 OVERDEVELOPMENT REDUX III by Kidlat Tahimik, COUNTING by Jem Cohen, HOTLINE by Silvina Landsmann, THE DAYS RUN AWAY LIKE WILD HORSES OVER THE HILLS by Marcin Malaszczak and THE FORBIDDEN ROOM by Guy Maddin and Evan Johnson. Kidlat Tahimik will be presenting his new film as part of a retrospective at Arsenal cinema in March 2016.
Forum Expanded is presenting a summer screening of Jasmina Metwaly und Philip Rizk's BARRA FEL SHARE' (Out on the Street) at silent green Kulturquartier on July 14.
OUT ON THE STREET (Egypt 2015, 72 mins) is a film about a group of workers from one of Egypt’s working class neighborhoods, Helwan. In the film ten working-class men participate in an acting workshop. Through the rehearsals, stories emerge of factory injustice, police brutality, courts that fabricate criminal charges, and countless tales of corruption and exploitation by their capitalist employers. On a rooftop studio overlooking the heart of Cairo – presented as a space between fact and fiction – the participants move in and out of character as they shape the performance that engages their daily realities. The film interweaves scenes from the workshop, fictional performances, and mobile phone footage shot by a worker intended as evidence for the courts to stop the destruction of his workplace. This hybrid approach aims to engage a collective imaginary, situating the participants and spectators within a broader social struggle.
OUT ON THE STREET premiered as part of this year's Forum Expanded and can currently be seen as part of Jasmina Metwaly’s and Philip Rizk’s contribution to the German Pavillon at the Venice Biennale.
The screening at silent green Kulturquartier will be followed by a discussion with the filmmakers.
We are presenting a selection of films that premiered as part of the Forum Expanded 2015 program and are now in our distribution range, at the International Short Film Festival in Oberhausen.WAYWARD FRONDS (USA 2014) by Fern Silva; Isabelle Prim’s <b>CALAMITY QUI? / CALAMITY WHO? (Canada, France 2014); in Marwa Arsanios' <b>HAVE YOU EVER KILLED A BEAR? OR BECOMING JAMILA (Lebanon 2014), the cover pictures of the Egyptian magazine Al-Hilal provide the starting point for a portrait of the Algerian freedom fighter Jamila Bouhired; <b>ORCHARD STREET (USA 1955/2014), the first film by Ken Jacobs, is a document about the bustling Jewish Manhattan neighborhood in which he grew up.
In collaboration with Allianz Kulturstiftung, Forum Expanded presents a series of talks and panels with the title Think:Film No. 3 at Akademie der Künste.
On Saturday February 7th, this year's theme, "To the Sound of the Closing Door", will be discussed in four keynote presentations followed by several panels on the following days. Concluding, on Thursday February 12, the Think:Film Award will be given to a work from the Forum Expanded programme for the second time.
The Forum presents two fims of the B-Scheme project , an archive project and film programme on film productions for black viewers in 1970s and 1980s South Africa, initiated by Darryl Els as part of "Visionary Archive".
Until the end of the Apartheid era, state funding was granted to numerous so-called B-Scheme films, which were shot by mainly white producers for black audiences. The 1973 gangster film JOE BULLETwas South African producer Tonie van der Merwe’s attempt to conquer a new market. Inspired in equal measure by the black pop culture of the time and the American Blaxploitation genre, Louis de Witt’s action-packed film about a manipulated cup final was one of the first to be shot with an all black cast. JOE BULLET offered its audiences a vision of life that did not correspond to the reality of most black South Africans under Apartheid. Although the film was not overtly political, it was swiftly banned and not screened for an extended period of time. Now this unique work has been restored and can be shown once again. UMBANGO (THE FEUD), directed by Tonie van der Merwe in 1986, is one of the few Westerns still in existence from this period, a typical Wild West story about the battle between good and evil. With the exception of one solitary gringo (who is shot dead at the very beginning), this hugely entertaining film was also shot with an entirely black cast. Director and producer Tonie van der Merwe will be our guest in Berlin for the screening of his films on February 6.
On February 11 Darryl Els will present his project during a "Visionary Archive" panel at the Akademie der Künste. Both films will can be seen again on February 14 and 15.
The Think:Film Award which was presented as part of Forum Expanded for the very first time this year goes to Amie Siegel for PROVENANCE. The award, established in cooperation with the Allianz Cultural Foundation, honors a work that creatively uses its medium in order to grasp and reflect geopolitical contexts artistically, to broaden the space of aesthetic experience, and to encourage mental changes of perspective. The award includes presentations at the Arsenal in Berlin and at the partner institution Cimatheque - Alternative Film Centre in Cairo. Jury members were Mohamed Beshir (Cairo), Marcel Schwierin (Berlin), Ala Younis (Amman).
Following the premiere of Georg Tiller's DMD KIU LIDT the members of the portrayed band Ja, Panik as well as Christiane Rösinger, Chris Immler and Maurice Summen will play piano versions of their songs on Friday February 14 at Alter Roter Löwe Rein (Richardstraße 31, Neukölln). Music starts 8 pm sharp.
This week, two films from last year’s Forum program, FOR ELLEN and HIVER NOMADE, go on general release. FOR ELLEN, the third film by So Yong Kim following IN BETWEEN DAYS and TREELESS MOUNTAIN, tells the story of an irresponsible rock musician attempting to reconnect with his young daughter after a long absence. Manuel von Stürler’s debut HIVER NOMADE, which recently received the European Documentary Film Prize, accompanies the difficult everyday life of two Swiss shepherds during the winter months.
Again, the Berlin newspaper "Der Tagesspiegel" is putting together a Reader’s Jury, which will award a prize to the best film showing in the Forum. Anyone interested in being...
The 47th Berlinale Forum will take place from 9-19 February 2017 as part of the 67th Berlinale. The deadline for film submissions has passed. The programme will be announced...