BERLINALE SHORTS: WHITE FLAGS ARE MORE VISIBLE!
27 films from 18 countries will be competing for a Golden and a Silver Bear, as well as the nomination for best short film at the European Film Awards and the first-ever EUR 20,000 Audi Short Film Award. This year’s members of the International Short Film Jury are documentary filmmaker and curator Madhusree Dutta, Turkish artist Halil Altındere, and producer and festival director Wahyuni A. Hadi from Singapore. Screening in competition are the latest works of Nadav Lapid, Amit Dutta, Jennifer Reeder, Matt Porterfield, artist duos Daniel Schmidt & Alexander Carver, Mischa Leinkauf & Matthias Wermke in collaboration with Lutz Henke, Billy Roisz & Dieter Kovačič, among many others.
Reflections on the current social and political conditions, in which the order of subject, predicate and object have been permanently suspended, pervade the programme and generate all kinds of symmetries. Independently of large production budgets, filmmakers today have the possibility of using analogue and digital technologies to fill cinematic space with hypotheses on and solutions to relevant issues.
What images have the power to dispel the pleasure found by some in being a soldier? Israeli director Nadav Lapid asks himself this question and then discovers an image that is able to do exactly that inLama? (Why?). In Japan, there’s a new term since Fukushima: “atomic divorce”. It is what the many divorces are called that have been filed all over Japan in the aftermath of the catastrophe. Christian Bau attempts to capture this phenomenon in Snapshot Mon Amour. David Muñoz visits a Syrian refugee camp in Lebanon. The production of his film El Juego del Escondite (Hide & Seek) relates directly to the question of what enables a refugee to remain the subject of his or her own narrative. Then there is the quintessence of artist intervention in public space – the raising of white flags atop the Brooklyn Bridge last summer in New York City – which can be seen as either an affront or a chance: the documentary Symbolic Threats by Leinkauf, Wermke and Henke offers a number of interpretations.
Matt Porterfield’s Take What You Can Carry tells of a young woman who is a foreigner in Berlin – and in doing so portrays Generation Y, with performance group Gob Squad as its mouthpiece. Jennifer Reeder’s Blood Below the Skin gives a glimpse of the tender and tangled web of love and dependency between a mother and her daughter that goes beyond the traditional allocation of roles.
German short films are making a strong showing, which can be ascribed, among other things, to intensive funding policies. “Yet the fact that for a long time now short films have not been limited to 15 minutes, but are on the average 22-minutes long, should – if German cinema is to remain competitive – be taken into account when revising film funding regulations,” says Maike Mia Höhne, curator ofBerlinale Shorts.
In February 2015, the Golden Bear for the Best Short Film will be awarded for the 60th time. A special programme, titled The Golden Night of the Short Bears, with a selection of films from 60 years of the Berlinale will be held at the Kino International on Saturday, February 14.
Berlinale Shorts 2015:
Architektura, Ulu Braun, Germany, 15’ (WP)
Bad at Dancing, Joanna Arnow, USA, 11’ (WP)
Blood Below the Skin, Jennifer Reeder, USA, 32’ (WP)
Chitrashala (House of Paintings), Amit Dutta, India, 19’ (WP)
Däwit (Daewit), David Jansen, Germany, 15’ (WP)
Dissonance, Till Nowak, Germany, 17’ (WP)
Hosanna, Na Young-kil, South Korea, 25’ (DP)
La Isla está Encantada con Ustedes (The Island is Enchanted with You), Alexander Carver & Daniel Schmidt, USA / Switzerland / Australia, 28’ (IP)
El Juego del Escondite (Hide & Seek), David Muñoz, Spain, 23’ (WP)
Kamakshi, Satindar Singh Bedi, India, 25’ (WP)
Lama? (Why?), Nadav Lapid, Israel, 5’ (IP)
Lembusura, Wregas Bhanuteja, Indonesia, 10’ (IP)
Lo Sum Choe Sum (3 Year 3 Month Retreat), Dechen Roder, Bhutan, 20’ (WP)
maku (veil), Yoriko Mizushiri, Japan, 6’ (WP)
The Mad Half Hour, Leonardo Brzezicki, Argentina / Denmark, 22’ (WP)
Mar de Fogo (Sea of Fire), Joel Pizzini, Brazil, 8’ (WP)
Of Stains, Scrap & Tires, Sebastian Brameshuber, Austria / France, 19’ (IP)
Pebbles at Your Door, Vibeke Bryld, Denmark, 18’ (WP)
Planet Ʃ, Momoko Seto, France, 12’ (WP)
San Cristóbal, Omar Zúñiga Hidalgo, Chile, 29’ (WP)
Shadowland, John Skoog, Sweden, 15’ (IP)
Snapshot Mon Amour, Christian Bau, Germany, 6’ (WP)
Superior, Erin Vassilopoulos, USA, 16’ (IP)
Symbolic Threats, Mischa Leinkauf, Matthias Wermke & Lutz Henke, Germany, 16’ (WP)
Take What You Can Carry, Matt Porterfield, USA / Germany, 30’ (WP)
The, Billy Roisz & Dieter Kovačič, Austria, 13’ (WP)
YúYú, Marc Johnson, France / Spain / USA, 15’ (WP)
January 13, 2015