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BERLINALE 2020

The Berlinale’s Panorama calls for political action

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- Further additions to the section include a new documentary by Karim Aïnouz and the latest fiction films by Srdan Golubović, Andrea Štaka and Guillaume Brac

The Berlinale’s Panorama calls for political action
Father by Srdan Golubović

Joining the likes of the already-announced #MeToo drama The Assistant with Julia Garner and Matthew Macfadyen, and a new Stellan Skarsgård starrer, Hope [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Maria Sødahl
film profile
]
, which have all found their way into the Berlinale’s Panorama (20 February-1 March 2020), new titles added to the section continue to widen the scope. They include Guillaume Brac’s À L'abordage [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Guillaume Brac
film profile
]
, which will show the adventure born of one summer night in Paris; Surge [+see also:
film review
interview: Aneil Karia
film profile
]
, with Ben Whishaw as a young man living a life of unbearable monotony until one day he embarks on a trip through Central London; and Father, described by the festival as “a moving tale about inequality”, focusing on a man whose children are taken away by social services.

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Protagonists experiencing dramatic changes will also appear in Minyan, all about New York in the 1980s, with a young boy looking for happiness outside of his rigid Jewish community, as well as Mogul Mowgli, with comedian Riz Ahmed (who also co-wrote the script) starring as a British rapper, whose big break is undercut by an illness that brings him back to something he tried his best to escape – his family and its Pakistani traditions. Poland’s Mateusz Kościukiewicz will flex his foreign acting muscles again after 2019’s The Informer [+see also:
trailer
interview: Andrea Di Stefano
film profile
]
, this time in Mare – showing a woman resignedly dedicated to her family, until a sudden encounter awakens the needs she had already considered dormant.

In the documentary field, the Swedish title Always Amber by Lia Hietala and Hannah Reinikainen will spotlight a new generation no longer interested in being constrained by fixed gender roles, while Teboho EdkinsDays of Cannibalism [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Teboho Edkins
film profile
]
will show Chinese merchants fighting for supremacy with Basotho cattle breeders, trying their best to preserve their traditions. The Brazilian – and black-and-white – movie Amazon Mirror will bring us closer to those living next to the world’s largest hydroelectric plants in Amazonia, struggling to make ends meet, and thanks to some never-before-seen footage, Bettina Böhler will tell the story of artist Christoph Schlingensief in Schlingensief – A Voice That Shook the Silence [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Bettina Böhler
film profile
]
, inviting the one and only Udo Kier along for the ride.

I Dream of Singapore promises an unflinching look at the life of migrant workers in Southeast Asia, and The Foundation Pit by Andrey Gryazev gives found footage a brand-new spin – by compiling YouTube videos of people addressing president Putin, angrily or adoringly, reflecting various moods felt all over the country. Finally, Karim Aïnouz, who not so long ago made quite an impact with The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Karim Aïnouz
film profile
]
and is no stranger to the Berlinale – most recently winning the 2018 Amnesty International Film Prize for Central Airport THF [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Karim Aïnouz
film profile
]
– now turns his attention to a young Algerian female activist in Nardjes A [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
.

Back to fiction, albeit in this case inspired by a real-life phenomenon, in One of These Days [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Bastian Günther
film profile
]
, Carrie Preston and Joe Cole will be joining in with the Texan “Hands on a Hardbody” competition, with contestants standing around a pickup truck for days, touching it with one hand. Sow the Wind [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Danilo Caputo
film profile
]
will show an uneasy return to a place that was once called home, as a woman fights for her grandmother’s olive grove, even if it means standing up to her father, and Francisco Márquez’s A Common Crime [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
will point out social injustice through the story of a woman whose refusal to let her housekeeper’s son into the house has tragic consequences. Last but not least, Dry Wind will riff on the unforgettable Tom of Finland, as a man who looks exactly like the character from the sexually charged drawings suddenly shows up in a small town.

“The Panorama programme is emblematic of the urgent need for political action and civil disobedience. Filmmakers and protagonists are standing up against the authorities,” said Michael Stütz, chosen as the new section head. “Russian citizens who have been left behind socially stagger between neo-imperialist subservience and making angry accusations against their president. A young woman whacks patriarchal dominance in the face with a shovel. And, in Sweden, self-determined young people are defining their own gender. They are all engaged in a search, stimulating change and breaking out. The films display the power of resistance and the scope of what is possible.”

Berlinale Special has also advertised some brand-new things on offer, embracing genre filmmaking with High Ground, a western developed in close collaboration with Australia’s indigenous communities, and Time to Hunt – a South Korean thriller boasting the participation of Parasite’s Choi Woo-shik. Oleg Sentsov himself will present Numbers [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Oleg Sentsov
film profile
]
, based on his eponymous 2011 play, and Golda Maria [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Patrick Sobelman and Hugo S…
film profile
]
, a documentary about the titular Holocaust survivor, directed by both her grandson and great-grandson, Patrick and Hugo Sobelman, will take an intimate look at the past. Finally, Courtney Stephens and Pacho Velez will come along clutching The American Sector, recounting the odd journey of the fragments of the Berlin Wall scattered across the USA.

Here is the full list of the Panorama section and the new additions to Berlinale Special:

Panorama

À l'abordage [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Guillaume Brac
film profile
]
Guillaume Brac (France)
Always AmberLia Hietala, Hannah Reinikainen (Sweden)
The Assistant - Kitty Green (USA)
Notes from the Underworld [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Tizza Covi and Rainer Frimmel
film profile
]
- Tizza Covi, Rainer Frimmel (Austria) (documentary)
Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets - Bill Ross, Turner Ross (USA)
Shine Your Eyes [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
- Matias Mariani (Brazil/France)
Days of Cannibalism [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Teboho Edkins
film profile
]
Teboho Edkins (France/South Africa/Netherlands)
Digger [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Georgis Grigorakis
film profile
]
- Georgis Grigorakis (Greece/France)
Eeb Allay Ooo! - Prateek Vats (India)
Exile [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Visar Morina
film profile
]
- Visar Morina (Germany/Belgium/Kosovo)
No Hard Feelings [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Faraz Shariat
film profile
]
- Faraz Shariat (Germany)
Hope [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Maria Sødahl
film profile
]
- Maria Sødahl (Norway/Sweden)
I Dream of SingaporeLei Yuan Bin (Singapore)
Running on Empty [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Lisa Weber
film profile
]
- Lisa Weber (Austria) (documentary)
Wildland [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jeanette Nordahl
film profile
]
- Jeanette Nordahl (Denmark)
The Foundation PitAndrey Gryazev (Russia)
One in a Thousand [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
- Clarisa Navas (Argentina/Germany)
Mare [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Andrea Staka
film profile
]
Andrea Štaka (Switzerland/Croatia)
MinyanEric Steel (USA)
Mogul Mowgli [+see also:
film review
interview: Bassam Tariq
film profile
]
­­– Bassam Tariq (UK)
Nardjes A [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
Karim Aïnouz (Algeria/France/Germany/Brazil/Qatar)
One of These Days [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Bastian Günther
film profile
]
Bastian Günther (Germany/USA)
Father [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Srdan Golubović
film profile
]
Srdan Golubović (Serbia/France/Germany/Croatia/Slovenia/Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Pari [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Siamak Etemadi
film profile
]
- Siamak Etemadi (Greece/France/Netherlands/Bulgaria)
Little Girl [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Sébastien Lifshitz
film profile
]
- Sébastien Lifshitz (France) (documentary)
Amazon Mirror ­– Fernando Segtowick (Brazil)
Saudi Runaway [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
Susanne Regina Meures (Switzerland)
Schlingensief – A Voice That Shook the Silence [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Bettina Böhler
film profile
]
Bettina Böhler (Germany)
Black Milk [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Uisenma Borchu
film profile
]
- Uisenma Borchu (Germany/Mongolia)
Sow the Wind [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Danilo Caputo
film profile
]
Danilo Caputo (Italy/France/Greece)
If It Were Love [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Patric Chiha
film profile
]
- Patric Chiha (France) (documentary)
Suk Suk - Ray Yeung (Hong Kong/China)
Surge [+see also:
film review
interview: Aneil Karia
film profile
]
Aneil Karia (UK)
A Common Crime [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
Francisco Márquez (Argentina/Brazil/Switzerland)
Dry WindDaniel Nolasco (Brazil)
Welcome to Chechnya - David France (USA) (documentary)

Berlinale Special

The American SectorCourtney Stephens, Pacho Velez (USA)
Golda Maria [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Patrick Sobelman and Hugo S…
film profile
]
Patrick Sobelman, Hugo Sobelman (France)
High Ground
Stephen Maxwell Johnson (Australia)
Numbers [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Oleg Sentsov
film profile
]
Oleg Sentsov in collaboration with Akhtem Seitablaiev (Ukraine/Poland/Czech Republic/France)
Time to HuntYoon Sung-hyun (South Korea)

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