After "Fortress Europe" and the "Kenedi" trilogy that we showed as part of our Žilnik retrospective in January 2014, in his new film LOGBOOK_SERBISTAN (Serbia 2015) the director once again looks at the life of migrants in a European continent divided by border fences. Asylum seekers from Syria, Afghanistan and different countries of Africa, who have landed in rural Serbia - a country itself on the edge of Europe that is trying to get into the EU. Many of them have a long journey by foot through Turkey and southeastern Europe behind them. They are all in an uncertain transition phase. Some of them need to have their residency status clarified, others want to move on. Žilnik follows them with his camera, as they talk to other people and become performers of their own story.
The screening on September 3 will be followed by a discussion with the director.
What is known today as the Yugoslav Black Wave ("crni talas") started out in the early 1960s as New Yugoslav Film ("novi yugoslovenski film"). The movement questioned old myths, challenged the political order and called loudly for a better kind of socialism. The discrepancy between daily life and the ideal socialist society led to disappointment about the stagnation in building socialism. However, the criticism of the system was meant in a constructive way. The attack on authority and official ideologies concurred with the demand for an egalitarian society and constant further development of revolutionary ideals. A far cry from partisan film – the partisan struggle against German occupation was one of the founding narratives of socialist Yugoslavia – whose heroes dominated the post-war cinema landscape, the films of the Black Wave were about society's flip side. Analytically acute and frequently featuring anarchic humor, they shed light on poverty, unemployment, homelessness,
violence, and knew no taboos. They were often characterized by a bleak, fatalistic perspective and did not fail to provoke an official reaction. The name "Black Wave" was coined in 1969 by a functionary who wrote a disparaging article in the newspaper Borba ("Struggle") about the films and their way of looking critically at Yugoslav society, in contrast to partisan films (which today are known as the "Red Wave"). Želimir Žilnik used the originally defamatory term ironically when he made his short CRNI FILM (Black Film). Although there was no official censorship, many films were shelved and directors were prevented from working. Today, Black Wave film is almost unknown. With the exception of a few renowned protagonists, such as Dušan Makavejev and Želimir Žilnik (who both continued to make films into and beyond the 1970s), most of the directors and their works have been forgotten outside of former Yugoslavia.
With our "Black Waves, Red Horizons" retrospective we want to shed light on this important period of Yugoslav cinema and are pleased to welcome two important representatives of New Yugoslav Film - Želimir Žilnik and Karpo Godina - to Arsenal. The films will be put into context by a series of introductions and lectures about the relationship between love, sex and politics, about workers’ organizations and about the representation of women in socialism.
2015 is dedicated to the remembrance of the victims of the Holocaust – a subject that is of particular significance for our institution, given that the cinematic engagement with the Holocaust has formed a key concern of our work since the very foundation of our association in 1963, then called the Friends of the German Film Archive. From 1st October to 9th November, Arsenal will once again show all 10 of the films that were digitalized as part of this year's Asynchronous project - the screenings will be accompanied by a comprehensive program featuring international guests. Moreover, the catalogue published in collaboration with the Department of Film Studies at the Free University Berlin is now on sale in bookstores and at the Arsenal box office. It presents the project's 46 films and contextualizes them in the history of film and features introductory texts by Christian Pischel and Tobias Ebbrecht-Hartmann.
On 20th September at 5 p.m., René Frölke's LE BEAU DANGER (Germany 2014) will screen at Filmkunst 66, as part of the Berlin International Literature Festival (ilb). There will be a post-screening discussion between the director and the film's protagonist, the Holocaust survivor and writer Norman Manea.
The Film and Television Museum opened on Potsdamer Platz in September 2000. To celebrate the 15th birthday of a museum that preserves the estate of the great silent movie era star Asta Nielsen as well as that of many others, a special matinee is being organized on September 20. The program includes a short 'cross-section' film by Walter Jerven, a "small souvenir" of the already "legendary" silent movie past that was marked by Nielsen. Thereafter, the Danish actress presented herself as being perfectly versatile when she played a yearning teenager disappointed by men in DAS LIEBES-ABC (Magnus Stifter, D 1916). Dressed as a man, she succeeds in introducing a young Parisian youth to the ABC of love. Asta Nielson plays this "role in trousers' dramatically and in a finely nuanced way at once, stirring up gender roles.
The Portuguese filmmaker Pedro Costa (*1959) is one of the most radical and original directors of his generation. Since 1989, he has made eight feature-length films and numerous shorts, many of which are milestones in contemporary cinema. A large part of his work is anchored in a specific place: Fontainhas, a slum without electricity or water on the outskirts of Lisbon, which was settled by immigrants from Angola, Cape Verde and Guinea-Bissau in the 1970s. Now torn down, it was a place where the consequences of Portugal's colonial history materialized. Costa's 20-year-long examination of the marginalized and excluded of society brought about a revision of his working methods until then and the emergence of a changed cinematographic signature. After renouncing the use of a big team and 35-mm film, he started composing magnificent pictures with a small digital camera and developed a very unique form of documentary fiction. The stretching of time, texturing of light and shadows, and an extremely elliptic narrative style with time jumps further characterize his Fontainhas films.
From September 24-27, Arsenal is showing four of Pedro Costa's exceptional feature-length films, all of which have a connection to Fontainhas and its inhabitants, as part of an overview that includes his latest award-winning work CAVALO DINHEIRO (2014), which will enjoy its Berlin premiere. We are particularly pleased that he will present the four films in person.
Stage Fright Alfred Hitchcock USA 1950
With Jane Wyman, Marlene Dietrich, Michael Wilding
35 mm OV 110 min
*Riddles of the Sphinx
Laura Mulvey, Peter Wollen UK 1976
DCP OV/GeS 91 min