June 2011

"Besprechung" ("Meeting")

by Stefan Landorf, opens June 9, 2011

Two film stills from Meeting

A film for anyone who feels like they’re just rehashing the same old pre-formulated phrases and is beginning to wonder why. A film that takes stock of verbal dos and don’ts.

Meetings seem to be being held everywhere you look, taking place every day and in a huge variety of different forms: from board meetings to departmental meetings, morning briefings to customer consultations. All of them are characterized by a particular linguistic dynamic and architectural continuity – the meeting room promises to provide clarity and reason and forms the best possible setting for both presentation and representation.

Stefan Landorf’s film allows audiences to barge in on meetings held at a wide range of different companies and institutions, introducing them in the process to such seemingly indecipherable terms as base shifting, interest barriers, shell companies and profit retention discounts. Whether at GlaxoSmithKline, the 14th tank division of the German army or the Africa department of a leading German children’s charity, wherever people hold meetings, they do so in special rooms and often make use of a special type of language in the process. A world of tables and chairs, coffee and mineral water, video projectors and room dividers, peopled by a wealth of different types of suits and costumes ranging from camouflage gear to jeans.

BESPRECHUNG infiltrates these normally hidden worlds, examining the words and gestures of those taking part in the meetings in order to map the rapidly growing arena of formal communication.

A selection of the companies and institutions where the film was shot:
- Glaxo Smith Kline, Munich
- Berliner Stadtreinigung (Berlin City Sanitation Department)
- Ideea Exhibition Stands, Berlin
- Gerina AG, Marburg
- Kindernothilfe, Duisburg (A Leading German Children’s Charity)
- Lingen Young Offenders Institution
- Department for Taxation Policy, Federation of German Industry, Berlin
- German Army, Neubrandenburg
- Xchanging, Frankfurt am Main

Trailer available on the production company website (if... Productions).

BESPRECHUNG (MEETING)
Country / Year: Germany 2009
Running time: 82 min
Format: 35mm, 16:9
Idea, director, sound and editor: Stefan Landorf, Cinematography: Christof Oefelein, Post production: Elektrofilm TMT, Frank Bürger, Producer: Ingo Fliess With: Anne-Marja Lützkendorf, Kerstin Peupelmann, Matthias Pick, Albrecht Schuch, Juliane Spaniel