An impressive German line-up for Locarno
by German Films
- Germany will be a major protagonist at the 69th edition of the festival, with 3 (co-)productions in competition, 2 on the Piazza, a 70-film retrospective, a career award, a jury president and more
Germany is a true guest of honour at the upcoming 69th Locarno Film Festival (3-13 August). The impressive delegation it will send to the major Swiss event is led by two International Competition titles. Angela Schanelec’s The Dreamlike Path [+see also:
film profile] is a story about powerlessness and happiness produced by Filmgalerie 451, where the paths of two lovers cross again after their being separated for 30 years. Award-winning short-film director Michael Koch will present his debut feature, Marija [+see also:
interview: Michael Koch
film profile], about a young Ukrainian cleaning lady working in Dortmund who will sacrifice anything to achieve her dream of owning a hairdressing salon. The film was produced by Pandora Film Produktion and Little Shark Entertainment with Swiss partners. A third title, a minority co-production by Komplizen Film, will be representing Germany in competition: Romanian director Radu Jude’s Scarred Hearts [+see also:
Two more Germans will be featured on the giant screen of the Piazza Grande: Christian Schwochow’s Paula [+see also:
film profile], about the pioneer of Expressionist painting Paula Modersohn-Becker (a production between Pandora Film Produktion and Grown Up Films also supported by French partners), and a portrait of another great figure produced by X Filme Creative Pool (with France and Austria) – namely, actress-turned-director Maria Schrader’s Stefan Zweig: Farewell to Europe [+see also:
interview: Maria Schrader
film profile], which focuses on the Austrian writer’s (played by Josef Hader) years in exile and has already sold over 150,000 tickets in Germany.
The Filmmakers of the Present competition section will open with Douglas Gordon’s I Had Nowhere to Go [+see also:
film profile] (Moneypenny Filmproduktion, olddognewtricks). The filmmaker and video artist partly based in Berlin found his inspiration in the diaries of Lithuanian-born Jonas Mekas, the driving force behind American avant-garde cinema, who is one of the last living contemporary witnesses of the labour camps in Germany and will be present in Locarno. In the same section, out of competition, Zero One Film will be showing Corinna Belz’s literary documentary portrait Peter Handke – In the Woods, Might Be Late [+see also:
film profile] (after her film on painter Gerhard Richter).
In the Leopards of Tomorrow section, which presents short and medium-length films by young directors who have not yet made a feature film, Francy Fabritz is competing with the 14-minute title Etage X.
A vast retrospective consisting of over 70 films is dedicated to Cinema in the young Federal Republic of Germany from 1949 to 1963. The retrospective’s catalogue will be published by the Deutsches Filminstitut on 28 July, and after Locarno, a selection of films will go on an international tour (from Trieste and Turin to Portugal and the United States).
German actor Mario Adorf will be presented with a Career Leopard, while three of his older films will be screened to complement this tribute. And last but not least, cult director Edgar Reitz has been chosen as the Leopard of Tomorrow jury president.
The complete list of the German productions and co-productions selected for Locarno is available here.