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Powerful documentaries stand alongside highly personal essay films, while works of fiction draw on pared-down plots or surrealist exuberance in equal measure. Whether narrow analogue formats or digital scans, 80s video footage or hand-coloured images from cinema’s early years: the 28 films that make up the 53rd Berlinale Forum main programme celebrate the diversity of cinematic forms, approaches and narratives, and explore the predicaments of the past and the present in unflinching fashion.

You can find essays, interviews and episodes of the Forum podcast on aesthetic and political issues of the programme in the Supplément section of our website. Additionally, every film site of this year's edition features comprehensive Bonus Material on the selected titles: essays, director's statements, interviews and image galleries.

The Forum Main Programme

Forum Special

Queer flamboyance in Rio de Janeiro, inverted ethnography in Bärwalde and the camera-aided dissections of Sohrab Shahid Saless: this year’s Forum Special programme explores marginalised areas of film history. The "Fiktionsbescheinigung" series shows ten short, medium-length and feature-length films by Black directors and directors of color who live or have lived in Germany. They are complemented by two newly restored films dedicated to Black culture in the US and Brazil.

Films in the Forum Special programme

Forum Special “Fiktionsbescheinigung”


For more than 50 years the Berlinale Forum has engaged in thinking about the medium of film, setting discourses in motion, accompanying aesthetic strategies in analytical fashion and discussing the role of cinema in society. Q&As with the filmmakers and extended film talks with guests take place after most of the Forum film screenings. The following panel discussions complement this year's programme.

Teaser Events

  • A collage of portraits showing panel host Can Sungu and the directors Cana Bilir-Meier, Cem Kaya and Yüksel Yavuz.

    Arriving, Staying, Making Films

    This year’s edition of “Fiktionsbescheinigung” is largely screening films from the 1970s, 80s and 90s. Filmmakers from families with a migration history talk about their experiences in the German film industry back then and now.

  • A panel discussion at silent green Kulturquartier, shot from above, showing the audience and the stage with 6 people participating in a discussion.

    Without Being an Accomplice

    The Berlinale Forum regularly presents films that deal with difficult subjects: with crimes against humanity, with violence, with complicity and responsibility. How can cinema approach these themes in an appropriate way?

Funded by:

  • Logo Minister of State for Culture and the Media
  • Logo des Programms NeuStart Kultur