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RELEASES Germany / Austria

Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky looks at bright side of life

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Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky looks at bright side of life

This week’s major European release in Germany and Austria is a film with a summer flavour: Happy-Go-Lucky [+see also:
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, written and directed by the UK’s Mike Leigh.

The film – which won the Silver Bear for Best Actress (Sally Hawkins) at the latest Berlin Film Festival – dispenses with complicated storylines and radiates light-heartedness and joie de vivre. Happy-Go-Lucky centres on the colourful daily life of Poppy, a nursery school teacher whose cheerfulness – vaguely irritating at first – turns out to be anything but superficial.

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This big-hearted film includes a number of enjoyable scenes, such as the flamenco lesson. The title was released in Germany yesterday by Tobis, who are launching it on Austrian screens today.

German audiences will also have the chance to discover two domestic productions. Preview are releasing the documentary Eye to Eye: All About German Film, by Michael Althen and Hans Helmut Prinzler, which retraces 100 years of German cinema, from Murnau to Doris Dörrie, looking at Dominik Graf, Fassbinder and Wenders along the way. Arsenal Experimental are launching Stephan Geene’s experimental film After Effect, which combines eroticism and existentialism and stars Sabine Timoteo.

The other two European releases hitting German screens this week are Céline Sciamma’s French film Water Lilies [+see also:
film review
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film profile
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(distributed by Pro-Fun) and the collective and varied (as the name suggests) work Tapas Mixtas, by six Spanish directors (distributed by W-Film).

Meanwhile, Austrian audiences will have the chance to discover Martin Gypkens’s superb German title Nothing But Ghosts [+see also:
trailer
film profile
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. The film, starring August Diehl, is divided into five parts set in different locations around the world, from Iceland to Nevada, and traces the changing but contradictory perceptions of its 30-year-old characters, in a slightly ironic way, as they start to see themselves and the world around them in a new light. The title is being released by Senator.

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(Translated from French)

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