Sunday, February 21, 2021

71st Berlin Film Festival Lineup

Still missing past fest director Dieter Kosslick's black humor.  Maybe all the lockdowns doesn't facilitate new directors couple to shine as they should but 2021 could be their moment. Sigh.

Festival will run in two stages; first, the Industry Event from March 1 to 5, 2021 and second, the Summer Special from June 9 to 20, 2021. It's in the Summer Special when Berllinale audiences will be able to see the majority of the films selected by all the sections.

Worth mentioning that Berlinale Talents offers a host of familiar events featuring top-class guests, which can be attended virtually between March 1 to 5, live and cost free.

The Berlinale being one of the first festivals in the year, this line-up is mainly made up of films that either during the shooting or editing and post-production have endured the pandemic.


According to Carlo Chatrian, festival Artistic Director, "If the competition offers a picture of the cinema as it is and will be, we can say that the disruption brought on by the events of 2020 has led filmmakers to make the most of this situation and create deeply personal films. This competition is less rich in numbers but very dense in contend and style". Fifteen (15) films will compete for top awards, two (2) are first features and all films are World premieres. Productions from 16 countries are represented.

Will not deny that it is a very-interesting selection as has works by masterfilmmakers like Hong Sangsoo and Céline Sciamma plus well-known directors as Xavier Beauvois, Radu Jude, Bence Fliegauf, and Maria Schrader who was a great actress. Talking about actors wearing the director hat, in the selection is Daniel Brühl's directorial debut which undoubtedly will be must-be-seen for me as highly enjoy his performances, he also is the star of Next Door.

Worth mentioning is Alonso Ruizpalacios second film after quite extraordianry Gueros and Ryûsuke Hamaguchi better known for his Locarno fest wins and 2018 Cannes in competition film.

It is a great selection which is refreshing for this unstable cinema days as tells us tht no matter what, we coul always have great cinema.

Albatros (Drift Away), Xavier Beauvois, France
Babardeală cu bucluc sau porno balamuc (Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn), Radu Jude, Romania, Luxembourg, Czech Republic, and Croatia
Fabian oder Der Gang vor die Hunde (Fabian - Going to the Dogs), Dominik Graf, Germany
قصیده گاو سفید Ghasideyeh gave sefid (Ballad of a White Cow), Behtash Sanaeeha and Maryam Moghaddam, Iran and France
偶然と想像 Guzen to sozo (Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy), Ryusuke Hamaguchi, Japan
Herr Bachmann und seine Klasse (Mr. Bachman and His Class), Maria Speth, Germany (documentry)
Ich bin dein Mensch (I'm Your Man), Maria Schrader, Germany
인트로덕션 Inteurodeoksyeon (Introduction), Hong Sangsoo, Korea
Memory Box, Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige, France, Lebanon, Canada and Qatar
Nebenan (Next Door), Daniel Brühl, Germany (debut film)
Una Película de Policías (A Cop Movie), Alonso Ruizpalacios, Mexico (documentary)
Petite Maman, Céline Sciamma, France
რას ვხედავთ, როდესაც ცას ვუყურებთ? Ras vkhedavt, rodesac cas vukurebt? (What Do We See When We Look at the Sky?), Alexandre Koberidze, Georgia and Germany
Rengeteg – mindenhol látlak (Forest - I See You Everywhere), Bence Fliegauf, Hungary
Természetes fény (Natural Light), Dénes Nagy, Hungary, Latvia, France and Germany (debut film)

International Jury
All members of the 2021 International Jury are Golden Bear winners.
There will not be a President of the Jury this year.

Mohammad Rasulof,  director, Iran
Director of the 2020 Golden Bear winning-film There is No Evil

Navad Lapid, director, Israel
Director of the 2019 Golden Bear winning-film Synonyms

Adina Pintilie, filmmaker, visual artist and curator, Romania
Director of the 2018 Golden Bear winning-film Touch Me Not

Ildikó Enyedi, director, Hungary
Director of the 2017 Golden Bear winning-film On Body and Soul

Gianfranco Rosi, director, Italy
Director of the 2016 Golden Bear winning-film Fire At Sea

Jasmila Žbanić, director, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Director of the 2006 Golden Bear winning-film Grbavica

Berlinale Special
Glamour and popular films in the Gala Premiers plus a space for reflection on film, its history and adjacent art forms. Films in this section can be nominated for the Berlinale Documentary Award. This year's lineup comprises eleven (11) titles from ten (10) coutnries, among them are three (3) first fetures.

Best Sellers, Lina Roessler, Canada and UK (debut film)
Courage, Aliaksei Paluyan, Germany (documentary, debut film)
French Exit, Azazel Jacobs, Canada and Ireland
Je suis Karl, Christian Schwochow, Germany and Czech Republic
Language Lessons, Natalie Morales, USA (debut film)
智齿 Limbo, Soi Cheang, Hong Kong and China
The Mauritanian, Kevin Macdonald, UK
Per Lucio (For Lucio), Pietro Marcello, Italy (documentary)
Tides, Tim Fehlbaum, Germany and Switzerland
Tina, Dan Lindsay and T. J. Martin, USA (documentary)
Wer Wir waren (Who We Were), Marc Bauder, Germany (documentary)

Berlinale Series
An exclusive first look at outstanding new series productions from around the world. Lately I have been watching hundreds of TV Series and most are not like regular TV, but like long movies and I truly LOVE them, specially Nordic Noir series which I find visually stunning with outstanding storytelling style. There is one Nordic Series in selection and definitively is must-be-seen for me.  It's a huge surprise to find a series that I have already seen but the great news is that's is a great long-movie about a subject matter explored many times but here has a fresh and what seems very-honest look; to ease the AIDS story there is a very entertaining plot that don't distract from main story plot.  Fantastic It's A Sin!

Entre Hombres (Amongst Men), Pablo Fendrik, Argentina
Ich und die Anderen (Me and the Others), David Schalko, Austria and Germany
It's a Sin, Peter Hoar, UK
Os últimos dias de Gilda (The Last Days of Gilda), Gustavo Pizzi, Brazil
Philly D.A., Ted Passon and Yoni Brook, USA  (documentary)
Snöänglar (Snow Angels), Anna Zackrisson, Sweden and Denmark

The competitive section was introduced in 2020. Its goal is to support new voices in cinema and to give more room to diverse narrative and documentary forms in the official selection. The lineup comprises twelve (12) titles from sixteen (16) countries, of which seven (7) first features. Most interesting to find here a film by Denis Côté.

زي ما انا عايزة As I Want, Samaher Alqadi, Egypt, France, Norway and Palestine (documentary, debut film)
Azor, Andreas Fontana, Switzerland, France and Argentina (debut film)
The Beta Test, Jim Cummings and PJ McCabe, USA and UK
Blutsauger (Bloodsuckers), Julian Radlmaier, Germany
Hygiène sociale (Social Hygiene), Denis Côté, Canada
Das Mädchen und die Spinne (The Girl and the Spider), Ramon Zürcher and Silvan Zürcher, Switzerland
Mantagheye payani (District Terminal), Bardia Yadegari and Ehsan Mirhosseini, Iran and Germany (debut film)
Moon, 66 Questions, Jacqueline Lentzou, Greece and France (debut film)
Nous (We), Alice Diop, France (documentary)
Rock Bottom Riser, Fern Silva, USA (experimental film, debut film)
The Scary of Sixty-First, Dasha Nekrasova, USA (debut film)
Vị (Taste), Lê Bảo, Vietnam, Singapore, France, Thailand, Germany and Taiwan (debut film)

Encounters Jury
Florence Almozini, programmer for film at Lincoln Center, France
Celia Barrionuevo, film festival artistic director, Argentina
Diedrich Diederichsen, editor and publisher, Germany

There are many more films in the following sections:

Berlinale Shorts (competitive)
Twenty (20) short films from 16 countries feature different formal languagues and range from fictional formats to experimental films, animations, hybrid and documentary forms. To check the shorts official blog go here.

Sexy, edgy, daring. Screens extraordinary cinema, is a traditional audience favorite and -with its own audience award- has the festival's biggest jury. Panorama is explicitly queer, explicitly feminist, explicitly political - and at the same time seeks to think beyond this categories.

Forum Expanded

The programs of the Forum and Forum expanded aim to expand the understanding of what film is, to test the boundaries of convention and open up fresh perspectives to help grasp cinema and how it relates to the world in new ways. The programs are independently curated and organized by Arsenal- Instute for Film and Video Art.

Generation Kplus and Generation 14plus, two competition programs screening state-of-the-art international cinema. Films that matter. For young cineastes and everyone else. This year has a reduced selection of fifteen (15) films.

Perspektive Deutsches Kino

Debut films and fresh impetus in German cinema. From a total of 225 submitted films came section selection with six (6) films.

twenty-seven (27) films with the comedic oeuvre of three American actresses Mae West, Rosalind Russell and Carole Lombard.
Berlinale Classics

To check films in each of above sections go to festival official site here. There is a list of links for each film with detail info, film stills and more.

Video of Announcement of the Competition

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