Gabriel Abrantes‘ films explore historical, social and political themes through an investigation of post-colonial, gender and identity questions. Two of his numerous short films (Taprobana (2015) and Freud und Friends (2016)) have already screened in Berlinale Shorts. This year he is selected with his film »Os Humores Artificiais«23 films from 19 countries will be competing for the Golden and the Silver Bear as well as the Audi Short Film Award, worth € 20,000, and a nomination for the European Film Awards at the 2017 edition of Berlinale Shorts.


What is your ambition in the film?

I wanted to make a sci-fi film that crossed artificial intelligence, south american indigenous anthropology and comedy.  Most of my films have characters that have difficulty communicating, sharing their worldview, or feeling alienated – that are dealing with strong sensations of estrangement. Then I like to  bring these people together – so I came up with a love story about a stand-up comedy robot that fell in love with a Yawalapiti girl that was expelled from her village.

How did you get started in the film business?

In the last year of art school I bought about two hours of Kodak short-ends and made four shorts over six months.  They are very rough, but I really like them. It was very important for my psychology that I had this investment in a precious material like film – it made me have a lot of care for what I was shooting. Shortly after university I moved to Portugal, and I have been working there ever since, making short films. It is a form that I really like – how it is not an easily lucrative form – so it becomes a laboratory for experimentation, which is where I really like to be when I am writing and making films – in the laboratory, trying out things that I am curious to experiment with work.

What are your future plans for 2017?

I’m currently editing my first feature, and I am working on writing a second feature my high school days, when I spent most of the time painting. I will also make my first short animation, which is about a sculpture that comes alive in the Louvre, and escapes to go participate in the Republique occupation protests.

films_humores_still_001-tifFilm excerpt from »Os Humores Artificiais«


Together with Brenda Lien and her film »Call of Cuteness«  we’re reframing the image of kitten cuteness: “While we watch the ‘cat fail’ of the day in cheerful safety, all that remains invisible in this neoliberal nightmare catches up with us. The cat’s body is consumed, exploited and controlled.“, she says. 23 films from 19 countries will be competing for the Golden and the Silver Bear as well as the Audi Short Film Award, worth € 20,000, and a nomination for the European Film Awards at the 2017 edition of Berlinale Shorts. Brenda Lien was born in Offenbach am Main, Germany in 1995, she works as an independent filmmaker and film music composer. She has been studying art with a focus on film and animation at the University of Art and Design Offenbach since 2012. In 2017 she is  selceted to the Berlinale Shorts competition with her film.


What is your ambition in the film?

Currently I am working on a triology about different kinds of internet videos. The first film Call of Beauty is about beauty-bloggers on YouTube, the second Call of Cuteness about cat videos and the third Call of Comfort (work in progress) will be about relaxation videos. I want to reflect why these videos are so popular, and what their high consumptiont tell us about our cultur and the viewers? Do these videos have any effects on our thinking or behaviour?

How did you get started in the film business?

First I wanted to be a pianist, then a composer, then an artist – and then I realized, that I could combine all of these interests in film somehow. At artschool I started with very experimental films, and I worked on the specific rotoscoping style, you can see in Call of Cuteness. Though I´ve made several animated films, I feel my real passion is telling stories in live action films. Here I like to think a lot about visual story telling and music, and I guess sometimes you´ll still find some experimental elements.

CallOfCuteness-Still2.jpgFilm extract from »Call of Cuteness«

What are your future plans for 2017?

I will be working on the script to my new (live action) shortfilm, about robots with eczemas and two workaholics trying to exorcise each others demons. Besides that there are several (film) music projects coming up and a theater performance, for which I will make an interactive animation.


Victor Lindgren is selceted to the Berlinale Shorts competition with his film »Kometen«. 23 films from 19 countries will be competing for the Golden and the Silver Bear as well as the Audi Short Film Award, worth € 20,000, and a nomination for the European Film Awards at the 2017 edition of Berlinale Shorts. Victor Lindgren was born in 1984 in Holmsund, Sweden, in his films he tells stories about people, with all their flaws and greatness, difficult relationships, failures and social injustices. His films often have a political undertone, an injustice to show or a norm to question.


What is your ambition in the film?

The Comet tells an important refugee story about having to flee your homeland, across the Mediterranean Sea, to a cold and closed Europe. It is made with small means and many dedicated people. I’m incredibly happy that I got to know Abdi and he has inspired me to write this story. He has made a similar hellish voyage from Somalia to Sweden, because of his sexual orientation. I hope this film can change his situation and raise the issue of refugees, especially LGBTQ refugees who today often become marginalized.

How did you get started in the film business?

I’m not really sure. I think I soon realized that I wasn’t meant for a long school education. I didn’t have the brain for it. And I don’t like the idea of working with the same thing each and every day not being able to choose. So I quitted my career in construction and started to seek for work or practice within the film industry.

kometen1neuFilm excerpt from »Kometen«

What are your future plans for 2017?

My first feature film. We shot it this summer and the material looks gorgeous but we don’t have money to edit the whole thing and do a proper distribution. So that’s my plan, to find money.


The Greek Jacqueline Letzou decided she wanted to become a film director after seeing Gus Van Sant’s film Elephant. She graduated with a distinction from the London Film School in 2013 and participated in Berlinale Talents in 2015. Her work revolves around coming-of-age, loneliness, non-traditional family constructs, intimacy and dreams. In 2017 she is selected for the Berlinale Shorts competition with her film »Hiwa«. 23 films from 19 countries will be competing for the Golden and the Silver Bear as well as the Audi Short Film Award, worth € 20,000, and a nomination for the European Film Awards at the 2017 edition of Berlinale Shorts.


What is your ambition in the film?

At a first level, I want to present Athens, my home-city, in a newfound way, exotic and peculiar, so that even people that have visited it, would be surprised. At a second, deeper level, my ambition is to evoke the real dream experience. I am highly intrigued by the dream concept and all of its parts: what we see, why we see what we see and how we see. Most of cinema tends to beautify dreams, yet I aim to portray dreams, no matter how harsh or ugly.

How did you get started in the film business?

I knew I wanted to write and direct films, since I was 15. So, in a way the start coincided with my personal start: the movement from adolescence to adulthood. My first non-amateur film was Thirteen Blue (2013) my thesis for The London Film School. With this short, I travelled to my first film festival, I received my first accreditation as a film director and I even won some awards. I officially entered the business part of our job.

What are your future plans for 2017?

My future plans involve focusing solely on my debut feature film, along with travelling with my films all around the world.

At the same time, I would like to finish a photo book, and another book, however I know it’s too much. So, these plans are no more than dreams for the moment. We’ll see.

athenFilm excerpt from »Hiwa«


Only a few more days and the time has come: the Berlinale starts! Here is a small overview of all films of our 2017 Berlinale Shorts programme with short synopses. And do not forget: after the screenings there will be Q&S and artist talks, the Berlinale Shorts invite everybody to join this conversation, from Monday to Friday, after the 4 p.m. short film screening in CinemaxX 5.

Keepthatdreamburning1.jpgkeep that dream burning, Rainer Kohlberger

Berlinale Shorts I 

– Fuera de Temporada (Außerhalb der Saison), Sabrina Campos, Argentinien, 23’ (WP)
Ein Sommerwochenende mit Freunden am Pool an der Peripherie der großen Stadt. Plötzlich steht Bruno vor Vera. Früher waren sie ein Paar, seitdem haben sie sich nicht mehr gesehen. / A summer weekend with friends by the pool, on the outskirts of a big city. Bruno suddenly appears before Vera. They used to be a couple, and haven’t seen one another since.

– keep that dream burning, Rainer Kohlberger, Deutschland / Österreich, 8’ (WP)
Aus einer Vielzahl von Actionfilmen hat Rainer Kohlberger unter Verwendung unterschiedlicher Algorithmen Noise und Störgeräusche herausgearbeitet und mithilfe dieser die Dramaturgie auf das Wesentliche reduziert./ Rainer Kohlberger applied various algorithms to extract the noise and disturbing sounds from a vast number of action films and with the aid of these disturbing sounds, has reduced the dramaturgy to its essence.

– Martin Pleure (Martin weint), Jonathan Vinel, Frankreich, 16’ (WP)
Stell dir vor, du wachst auf und alle deine Freunde sind verschwunden. Du machst dich auf den Weg und suchst sie. Überall. In der Stadt, in den Bergen, in den Flüssen. Aber du kannst sie nicht finden. / Imagine waking up to find that all your friends had disappeared. You set off to look for them. Everywhere. In the city, in the mountains, in the rivers. But you can’t find them.

– Avant l’envol, Laurence Bonvin, Schweiz, 20’ (IP)
1960 wird die Elfenbeinküste unabhängig und in der damaligen Hauptstadt Abidjan entstehen eine Reihe von offiziellen Gebäuden, die Spiegel des neuen Selbstbewusstseins sind: heroisch, modern, futuristisch. Wie passen diese Gebäude ins Heute? / The Ivory Coast gained independence in 1960 and in its then-capital, Abidjan, an array of official buildings developed which reflected the new self confidence: heroic, modern, futuristic. How do these buildings fit into the present day?

– Coup de Grâce (Gnadenschuss), Salomé Lamas, Portugal, 26’ (WP)
Francisco & Leonor, Vater und Tochter. Lange haben sie sich nicht gesehen. Er hatte nicht mehr damit gerechnet, sie wiederzusehen. Je mehr Zeit sie miteinander verbringen, desto abwegiger werden die Situationen und Momente. Salomé Lamas versteht die Beziehung zwischen den beiden als Skulptur. Aus der Bewegung in den Stillstand und vice versa. / Francisco & Leonor, father and daughter. They haven’t seen each other for a long time. He no longer counted on ever seeing her again. The more time they spend with one other, the absurder the situations and moments become. Salomé Lamas perceives their relationship as a sculpture. From motion to standstill and vice versa.

octopusOh Brother Octopus, Florian Kunert


– Kometen (Der Komet), Victor Lindgren, Schweden, 11’ (IP)
Zwei schwule Männer sind auf der Flucht von Somalia nach Schweden. Nur einer wird das gemeinsame Ziel erreichen. Abdi Aziiz, der einen der beiden spielt, hat eine solche Flucht selbst erlebt. „Er ist unser Komet“, sagt Regisseur Viktor Lindgren. / Two gay men flee from Somalia to Sweden. Only one of them will reach their intended destination. Abdi Aziiz, who plays one of the men, experienced a similar flight. “He is our comet”, director Viktor Lindgren explains.

– Miss Holocaust, Michalina Musielak, Polen / Deutschland, 22’ (WP)
Wer wird Miss Holocaust Survivor? Ein jährlicher Schönheitswettbewerb der anderen Art. Gegen allgemeine Bedenken und makabre Assoziationen behaupten sich alte Damen, die die Erinnerung wach halten wollen. / Who will be the Miss Holocaust Survivor? An annual beauty contest of a different kind. Against general misgivings and macabre associations, old women stand their ground in order to keep the remembrance alive.

– Cidade Pequena (Kleine Stadt), Diogo Costa Amarante, Portugal, 19’ (IP)
Als der sechsjährige Frederico in der Schule lernt, dass die Menschen sterben, wenn das Herz aufhört zu schlagen, kann er des Nachts nicht schlafen. Am nächsten Tag geht seine Schwester zum Lehrer: Muss man Kindern unbedingt die Wahrheit sagen? Muss man das? / When six-year-old Frederico finds out at school that people die when their hearts stop beating, he is unable to sleep that night. The next day his sister confronts the teacher: Must one always tell children the truth? Always?

– Le film de l’été (Der Film des Sommers), Emmanuel Marre, Frankreich / Belgien, 30’ (WP)
Zwei Männer, Freunde, und der Sohn des einen. Ein Sommer, eine Reise. Der eine Mann wartet auf die Mutter, die das Kind abholen soll. Der andere Mann will gehen, endlich gehen. Das Kind hält den Mann – und das Miteinander macht die Krise vergessen. / Two men, friends, and one of the men’s son. A summer, a journey. One of the men waits for the mother to pick up the child. The other man wants to leave, finally leave. The child holds the man back – and their togetherness renders the crisis forgotten.

Still_FDE_2.jpgLe film de l’été (Der Film des Sommers), Emmanuel Marre


– The Rabbit Hunt, Patrick Bresnan, USA / Ungarn, 12’ (IP)
Die Zuckerfelder brennen und die Jungen in Pakohee bereiten sich auf ein Ritual vor, das im Süden Floridas seit vielen Jahren als Initiationsritual praktiziert wird: die etwas andere Kaninchenjagd. / The sugar fields are burning and the boys in Pakohee prepare for an initiation rite that has been held in the south of Florida for years: A somewhat different kind of rabbit hunt.

– Fishing Is Not Done On Tuesdays, Lukas Marxt & Marcel Odenbach, Deutschland / Österreich, 15’ (WP)
Ein Stelzenhaus wird durch seine Architektur zum kinematographischen Apparat, die Küste Ghanas zum Ausgangspunkt für eine Reise in die Gegenwart und das Gestern. / A stilt house becomes a cinematographic device by means of its architecture, Ghana’s coastline the starting point of a journey in the present day and the yesteryear.

– Monangambeee, Sarah Maldoror, Algerien, 18’ – Außer Konkurrenz
Eine Frau besucht ihren Mann im Gefängnis. Beim Weggehen verspricht sie ihm ein „Complet“. Der Gefängniswärter verrät den Mann beim Direktor. Der Film beruht auf einem Missverständnis. Der Film steht für ein Kino im Dienst der Befreiung Afrikas. / A woman visits her husband in prison. When departing, she promises him a “Complet”. The guard betrays the man by informing the prison director. The film is based on a misunderstanding. The film represents cinema for the liberation of Africa.

– Oh Brother Octopus, Florian Kunert, Deutschland, 27’ (WP) 
Die indonesischen Seenomaden glauben, dass mit der Geburt eines jeden Jungen ein Zwillingsbruder in Gestalt eines Oktopus das Licht der Welt erblickt. Wenn diesem Bruder ein Unglück zustößt, wird er sich rächen. / The sea nomads of Indonesia believe that with every newborn there is a twin brother in the form of an octopus. Rituals are carried out to appease the brother in the water and prevent misfortunes. When dishonor occurs, Jakarta is portrayed as the apocalyptic revenge of the brother octopus.

– Ensueño en la Pradera (Träumerei in der Prärie), Esteban Arrangoiz Julien, Mexiko, 17’ (WP)
In wenigen Bildern und Einstellungen erzählt Regisseur Esteban Arrangoiz Julien von der täglichen Gewalt in Mexikos Gesellschaft. Er verbindet fiktionale mit dokumentarischen Teilen, um dem, was passiert – wirklich passiert – näher zu kommen. / In just a few pictures and shots, director Esteban Arrangoiz Julien tells of the power structures in Mexico. In this essay he combines fictional and documentary parts to draw closer to our concept of what it is that happened, really happened.

CallOfCuteness-Still2.jpgCall of Cuteness, Brenda Lien


– Centauro (Zentaur), Nicolás Suárez, Argentinien, 14’ (IP)
Mann und Pferd werden eins. Nur für einen kurzen Augenblick. Dann zieht der eine das Messer und das Motiv der Rache durchbricht die Idylle. Auge um Auge. Mensch um Tier. Das Feuer brennt auf der Straße und der mythische Raum wird um den realen Raum erweitert. / Man and horse become one. Just for a brief moment. Then one of them draws a knife and the motive of the revenge violates the idyll. An eye for an eye. A human for a beast. Fire burns on the street and the mythical realm overflows into the realm of reality.

– Call of Cuteness, Brenda Lien, Deutschland, 4’ (WP)
„Während wir heil und munter den Katzen-Fail des Tages gucken, holt uns alles, was unsichtbar bleibt in diesem neoliberalen Albtraum, wieder ein. Der Katzenkörper wird konsumiert, ausgenutzt und kontrolliert. Wir sind hier, weil ihr dort wart – und Abfall wird im Meer entsorgt.“ (Brenda Lien) / “While we watch the ‘cat fail’ of the day in cheerful safety, all that remains invisible in this neoliberal nightmare catches up with us. The cat’s body is consumed, exploited and controlled. We are here because you were there – and waste is disposed of in the sea.” (Brenda Lien)

– The Boy from H2 (Der Junge aus H2), Helen Yanovsky, Israel / Palästinensische Gebiete, 21’ (WP)
Muhammad ist 12 Jahre alt und lebt mit seinen neun Geschwistern in Hebron, im Sektor H2. Die Zone wird vom israelischen Militär kontrolliert, was das Leben dort bestimmt. Doch Muhammad hat einen Traum… / Muhammad is 12 years old and lives with his nine siblings in Hebron, in the H2 sector. The zone is controlled by the Israeli army, which shapes life there. But Muhammad has a dream…

– Altas Cidades de Ossadas (Hohe Städte aus Totengebein), João Salaviza, Portugal, 19’ (WP)
Karlon, ein Pionier des kapverdischen kreolischen Raps in Portugal sucht sich seinen Zufluchtsort selber. Er flieht in das Dunkel der Nacht und die Poesie des Untergrunds. / Karlon, a pioneer of Cape Verdean creole rap in Portugal searches for his own place of refuge. He takes shelter in the darkness of night and poetry of the underground.

– Estás vendo coisas (Du siehst Dinge), Bárbara Wagner & Benjamin de Burca, Brasilien, 18’ (IP)
Tecnobrega! Ein Musical inszeniert von zwei Protagonisten der Szene. „Lass uns Liebe machen, jeden Tag und immer!“ Ja! / Tecno brega! A musical staged by two protagonists of the scene. “Let’s make love, every day and always!” Yes!

– Everything, David OReilly, USA / Irland, 11’ (WP)
„Everything“ ist ein Videospiel – Alles bist Du. Das Spiel ist eine Simulation der Welt, gesehen aus der Perspektive von Allen und Allem. Atomen, Pflanzen, Tieren, Planeten, Galaxien. Der englische Religionsphilosoph Alan Watts erzählt die Geschichte, die keine Geschichte ist, weil es einfach die Welt ist, wie sie ist. / “Everything“ is a video game about being you. It is a procedural simulation of the systems of nature, seen from the points of view of everything in it, from atoms, to plants and animals, to planets and galaxies. There is no narrative or story – just the world as it is. It is narrated by Alan Watts (1915-1973).

07_ESTAS VENDO COISAS_STILL_02.jpgEstás vendo coisas (Du siehst Dinge), Bárbara Wagner & Benjamin de Burca


– The Crying Conch, Vincent Toi, Kanada, 20’ (WP)
Im 18. Jahrhundert führt Franswa Makandal eine Revolte auf Haiti an, um die Sklavenbesitzer zu töten. Ein Film ohne sentimentalen Pathos, der den Weg in den Widerstand deutlich macht. / In 18th century Haiti, Franswa Makandal leads a revolt to kill slave owners. A film devoid of sentimental pathos, clearly illustrating the route to the resistance.

– Street of Death, Karam Ghossein, Libanon / Deutschland, 23’ (WP)
Ein Platz am Ende der Stadt, ein Fluss von Bildern und Geschichten. Eintauchen in die Erzählungen von Gestern und die Orte von heute. / A place on the end of the city, a flood of pictures and stories. Immersion into the tales of the past and places of the present.

– Hiwa, Jacqueline Lentzou, Griechenland, 11’ (WP)
In Jays Traum ist die Sonne in Athen so schwach, dass man direkt hineinschauen kann, ohne blind zu werden./ In Jay’s dream, the sun in Athens is so weak that one is able to look at it without going blind.

– Os Humores Artificiais (Die Künstlichen Humore), Gabriel Abrantes, Portugal, 30’ (WP)
Gabriel Abrantes erzählt die Liebesgeschichte zwischen dem indigenen Mädchen Jo, vom Stamm der Yawalapitis aus dem Amazonasbecken und Andy Coughmann, einem Roboter, der in São Paulo zum berühmten Stand-Up-Comedian wird. / Gabriel Abrantes tells the love story of Jo, an indigenous girl belonging to the Yawalapitis tribe from the Amazon Basin and Andy Coughmann, a robot who becomes a famous stand-up comedian in São Paulo.



Laurence Bonvin studied photography at the École Nationale Supérieure de la Photographie (ENSP) in Arles, France. Her documentary practice in photography and video has recently focused on urban transformation processes, segregation, human displacement and the architecture of power. She has exhibited her work extensively worldwide and has published four monographs. She is selected for the Berlinale Shorts competition 2017 with her film »Avant L’envol«. 23 films from 19 countries will be competing for the Golden and the Silver Bear as well as the Audi Short Film Award, worth € 20,000, and a nomination for the European Film Awards at the 2017 edition of Berlinale Shorts. In our Interview she speaks about the fascination of modernist architecture, her beginnings and the future.

Laurence Bonvin, Studio: Berlin, Köpenicker Strasse 146-147, 4.5.2015©Michael Danner

What is your ambition in the film?

The film is an attempt to tell something about the city of Abidjan through architecture, to make architecture speak of it’s historical and political context. And it’s been quite a challenge. I’m fascinated by modernist architecture, especially outside of the Western World. I wanted to do a film about modernism in Africa, then a succession of events eventually lead me to Ivory Coast. More specifically I wanted to give a glimpse of what the vision and ambitions for Abidjan were in the 60s and 70s and what the current state is, an apparent status quo. But actually things are taking off again after 10 years of civil war and the city center is going through a fast urban rejuvenation. Unfortunately few people are really aware of the quality of some of these buildings and the necessity to preserve them. So I also wanted to pay a tribute to that fantastic architectural heritage. But beyond that I wanted to look at the relation between modernism and post-­coloniality, power and architecture, formality and informality, between monumental spaces and the body, gestures and mouvements of everyday users and passerbys. And eventually let the failure, the dystopia become apparent. The film tries to tell a lot in a very minimal way: time, power structures, post-­colonial heritage and everyday life, gestures and people. Yet, there is a kind of melancholy, of tropical numbness one can sense, as if time had really been suspended.

How did you get started in the film business?

The desire to make films had been in the back of my mind for a very long time. While I was involved with photography I always watched a lot of movies of all kinds: art, experimental, documentary, independent fiction. I even attempted entering a film school in my early thirties and failed to be accepted. Finally it just happened, almost by chance – and also thanks to the new full-­frame photo cameras–, and I co-­directed my first short-­film After Vegas, with Stéphane Degoutin, in 2013. That was the start of it.

Avant l'envol_3.jpgFilm excerpt from »Avant L’envol«

What are your future plans for 2017?

I’ll be accompanying my film wherever it’s going to go. Further I have several projects in preparation and I don’t know yet which one I will be eventually be able to shoot this year.


In German language!

Of presumed documentary moments, a philosophical computer game, sensually direct cinema and films with explosive potential. In this candid interview, Berlinale Shorts curator Maike Mia Höhne explains how assembling a short film programme can represent an opportunity to show a variety of perspectives and invite the audience to perceive and assimilate special points of view along the way.

Agustín Alcides Otero in Centauro (Centaur) by Nicolás Suárez

How are we to interpret this year’s leitmotif “Reframing the Image”?

For me, “Reframing the Image” means first and foremost questioning what sort of clichés our reality is occupied by. It’s an invitation to recalibrate one’s own perception, an invitation to let your own conceptions be shaped by something or someone else, by having one’s own gaze channelled through a new perspective. For instance the way Esteban Arrangoiz Julien from Mexico does this in a remarkably elegant manner that leaves a lasting impression in his film Ensueño en la Pradera (Reverie in the Meadow). The opening long shot shows a barren prairie landscape. Somewhat off in the distance, a young couple is conversing, while an automobile approaches from far away. From the exposition of the voice-over narrator, we learn that the young man had returned to Mexico from the United States a year before, due to terrible homesickness. For a home that is firmly in the grip of drug cartels, a home where blackmail and kidnappings are the order of the day. On the screen, the vehicle draws closer. Then a cut to a black screen, and later a gunshot. And immediately the viewers have the feeling that they have grasped the situation, since we all know how the drug trade works from innumerable feature films, right? This moment of apparent understanding is ruptured by the unmasking of this presumably documentary account as pure fiction: The story is an invention, as the narrator goes on to explain. Then – again over a black screen – little children talk about their dreams, how they want to be drug bosses when they grow up. A really affecting approach to the inner picture of what has occurred. After that, you’re so spellbound that you have to catch your breath for a second.

Everything by David OReilly

In his computer game Everything, David OReilly (Please Say Something, Golden Bear for Best Short Film 2009 & RGB XYZ, Special Mention, Berlinale Shorts 2008) takes the leitmotif to another level by choosing a philosophical approach. OReilly had two sources of inspiration for his film: on the one hand, the writings of English philosopher of religion Alan Watts, who above all undertook a deep investigation of the philosophies of Zen, Buddhism in general and Taoism; and on the other hand, the short film Powers of Ten by Charles and Ray Eames from the year 1977, in which the camera is at first focussed on a picnicking couple in a park and then, in steps corresponding to powers of ten in surface area, zooms out further and further all the way into deep space, before finally diving back in towards Earth and the park, all the way into the inside of the human body. Everything is an invitation to be everything and everyone and to overcome the little needy self. This also represents a “reframing”. In the framework of Berlinale Talents, David OReilly will also be speaking about his philosophy and aesthetic, and presenting the game version of Everything.

How does this fit with this year’s Forum Expanded title “The Stars Down to Earth” and the section’s associated statement that turning our gaze from the heavens and directing it at the ground of hard facts is more necessary than ever in a world turned upside down?

The great potential of a short film programme is of course precisely the possibility of using shifts, being able to show one side and the other too and offer various perspectives. With his film A Man Returned (Silver Bear for Best Short Film 2016), Mahdi Fleifel granted audiences nuanced glimpses into Lebanon’s largest Palestinian refugee camp – beyond all preconceived notions. With The Boy from H2, once again this year the section’s programme features a similarly concrete work in the style of direct cinema, which makes the everyday existence of a 12-year-old Palestinian boy in the divided city of Hebron immediately available for the viewer to experience. The sector H2 is under the control of the Israelis and the Palestinians’ freedom of movement is severely limited. The protagonist takes us out on the street with him, we accompany him on his everyday trek through the innumerable checkpoints, the division of the city becomes directly tangible. A nightmare.

The big question behind many of this year´s works is: How can balance be achieved in this world turned upside down? The programme is defined by the colours black and green. For me, it’s an expression of the necessity to re-enter into a dialogue – with our fellow humans, with nature – and the need to consume less, and all that is possible without the films resorting to moralising. They leave plenty of space for the viewers’ minds to wander.

The Boy from H2 (Der Junge aus H2) by Helen Yanovsky

In Florian Kunert’s Oh Brother Octopus, the equilibrium of the world has been thrown off. The apocalypse approaches in the form of an artificial world, one which reminds me of Dubai. It annihilates the basis of human existence and is at the same time a promise of salvation.

Oh Brother Octopus by Florian Kunert

Last year you described your own particular hallmark as a curator with the terms sex and politics, as well as sensuality and the body. Where can we find the sensual and corporeal in this year’s programme?

Fuera de Temporada (Out of Season) by Sabrina Campos from Argentina is a story without a climax. The film tells of a love that once was but is no more. The sensuality is created by the portrayal of bodies in search of themselves – without a climax, and without drama.
But when I talk about sensuality, I am by no means only referring to the sexual. I mean the direct, the finely-pored, the touchable. The cliché that is dissolved by unravelling it.

Balthazar Monfé, Vincent Minne and Jean-Benoît Ugeux in Le film de l’été(The Summer Movie) by Emmanuel Marre

In Le film de l’été (A Summer’s Film) by Emmanuel Marre, there is a scene in which two friends are talking with one another. One of them is newly in love. “Then you must have fucked like rabbits, huh?” asks the other. “No, actually we didn’t. We were just together, that’s all. And since then I’ve been using the shower gel that she bought the whole time.” What a great, concrete image for love! While the one guy is totally in the here and now, the other is trapped in his world of concepts that has absolutely nothing to do with the real world of his counterpart.

A building can be a body too, as in Fishing is Not Done on Tuesdays, where the house becomes a cinematographer that we peer through and which guides our gaze. The actions depicted on the screen elude a definitive interpretation. Only the cement of the house remains concrete and thus comprehensible.

Martin Pleure (Martin Cries) on the other hand was born exclusively of a feeling, which is precisely its strength. Jonathan Vinel (Tant qu’il nous reste des fusils à pompe, Golden Bear for Best Short Film 2014 & Notre Héritage, Berlinale Shorts 2016, both in collaboration with Caroline Poggi) rearranges sequences from the computer game “Grand Theft Auto V” into a lyrical narrative on loss, longing and anger. It conveys its sentiment squarely, doesn’t shy away from big emotions or strong images and refuses to pay tribute to the larger discourse regarding the “harmful” influence of computer games.

Martin Pleure (Martin Cries) by Jonathan Vinel

The Crying Conch also offers a sensual cinematic experience through its direct addressing of the audience – performed in a manner analogous to the use of the choir in Greek tragedy. A man stands in front of the dark sea and shouts into the night towards the viewers: Franswa Mackandal was carried off to Haiti against his will as a slave in the 18th century, where he subsequently became the leader of the revolt against the French colonial rulers. Vincent Toi’s film is set in the present – Mackandal is a construction worker who is ordered around by his foreman. Just as back then, he sees through the mechanisms of power and sets about to defend himself. And thus history reverberates as an echo once again in the present day.

With its directness, a film like The Rabbit Hunt doesn’t offer many options for viewers to distance themselves either. Patrick Bresnan has already shot several documentary films in the small town of Pahokee in the state of Florida. In The Rabbit Hunt, he shows young men on the threshold of adulthood who embark on a rabbit hunt that resembles an initiation ritual. When the fields are burned for the sugar cane harvest and the rabbits flee from the flames, concentration, speed and courage are in high demand, as the animals are caught and killed with bare hands. That’s very direct cinema and I am sure that the audience is going to react to it. And that’s exactly what it’s all about of course: to get us activated.

What sort of challenges did you have to deal with in assembling the programme?

Putting together the programme was indeed very interesting this year. Especially considering the fact that each and every individual work possesses great explosive potential. I invited one film after another, assembled the programme step by step and thought really long and hard about the overall composition.

Libreta Michalchov, Marina Reines and Rita Berkowitz in Miss Holocaust by Michalina Musielak

For instance, contrary to my first impulse, I didn’t place Miss Holocaust at the end of a programme, because the film already offers space to reflect on the represented content during its immediate reception. Since 2012, there has been an annual beauty pageant for holocaust survivors organised in Haifa in Israel. During preparations for the pageant, the contestants learn to present themselves and practice strolling down the catwalk. The competition is the subject of heated debate within Israeli society. For the women, it’s something positive, because their motivation is to keep the memory alive. Especially considering the nature of the subject, I think it’s a real accomplishment how the filmmaker Michalina Musielak manages to maintain a distance between the viewers and protagonists of her film in order to allow for reflection.

By way of contrast, I put Kometen (The Comet) by Victor Lindgren (Ta av mig, Teddy Award for Best Short Film 2013), which is incredibly powerful for its part due to its concentration, at the beginning of the programme – even before Miss Holocaust. In fewer than ten images, Lindgren relates the flight to safety, arrival and loneliness of a young man from Somalia. Both films are united by the question of how life can go on when it’s all over. They thus serve as a departure point for a programme that slowly embarks on an upward climb.

One of the films in this year’s programme is being screened out of competition. Why did you decide to include Monangambeee in your selection?

Monangambee opens up a dramatic arc that allows us to bring the contemporary films into a dialogue with their precursors. “Monangambeee”, which can be translated as something like “white death”, was once upon a time the alarm call that warned of the arrival of Portuguese slave traders in Angola. “Today it serves as a signal to come together for the People’s Liberation Front,” as critic Nadia Kasji wrote in the 1970s. Director Sarah Maldoror, herself born on the French island state of Guadeloupe, shot her own film for its part in Algeria – in the spirit of the liberation of Africa and with official support from the C.O.N.C.P. (The Conference of Nationalist Organizations of the Portuguese Colonies) and technical assistance from the Algerian People’s National Army. The film makes use of a misunderstanding to illustrate in an exemplary fashion the difficulties in mutual comprehension between colonial rulers and those they oppress: A woman visits her husband in prison. In parting, she promises him a “complet”, a simple dish of beans and fish in Algeria. For the oppressors however the word “complet” means “suit”. And so it is that the wife’s promise is interpreted by the guards as an indication of an impending attempt to appeal the husband’s sentence in front of a tribunal, which ends up having dire consequences for the imprisoned man. Sarah Maldoror foregoes illustrating the oppression by depicting presumably realistic methods of torture, instead choosing to employ a mimetic representation of the sensations. Liberating one’s own culture from the gaze of the colonial rulers, that is what’s at stake here.

In Altas Cidades de Ossadas (High Cities of Bone) João Salaviza (Rafa, Golden Bear for Best Short Film 2012) finds a similarly strong image for the question of the place that society assigns to any given individual. The rapper Karlon was born and raised in a housing estate near Lisbon. His songs explore his Capeverdean-Creole roots. Salaviza translates this theme into a fictional film about Karlon, wherein the protagonist withdraws from his council estate to the sugar cane fields. Individuals from his world at home attempt to convince him to return, but the rapper simply doesn’t want to go back.

In her film Avant l’envol (Before the Flight) , Laurence Bonvin examines the architectural style of the government buildings constructed in the wake of Ivory Coast’s gaining its independence from France – the parliament, the city hall, the headquarters of the Ministry of Finance. Back then, foreign architects were commissioned with the unique task. The French architect Henri Chomette, who emigrated to Ethiopia in 1949, designed many of the public buildings that today still number among the most distinctive in Abidjan. In Avant l’envol too, the buildings are bodies, the architecture becomes the protagonist.
I am very much looking forward to perceiving and assimilating these special perspectives together with our audience and filmmaking guests for eleven wonderful days during the Berlinale.

Avant l'envol_2.jpg
Avant l’envol (Before the Flight) by Laurence Bonvin



Sarah Maldoror is a French filmmaker of African descent and her film Monangambeee,
produced in 1969 will  be screened out of competition at the 2017 edition of Berlinale Shorts. The film is part of the collection of Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art e. V. and was only recently digitized, bears witness to a cinematic practice in opposition to colonial oppression. In the following interview she talks about her beginnings in the film industry and how important films are from a Black perspective.

tournage-un-dessert-pour-constanceSarah Maldoror while filming „Un dessert pour Constance“

What is your ambition in the film?
Monangambeee, is my first motion picture, shooted  in 1969. The film’s script (written collaboration with Serge Michel) is based on a short story by the Angolan writer and political activist Luandino Vieira, who had been sentenced by the Portuguese colonial regime to serve a fourteen-year term at the camp of Tarrafal in Cape Verde.

Shot in the late 1960s, depicts Portuguese ignorance of Angolan culture and the cruel treatment and imprisonment of people actively opposed to colonialism.

How did you get started in the film business?
In the late 50’s, I and three friends, the Haitian singer Toto Bissainthe, Timité Bassori, and Ababacar Samb, decided to create our own troupe, the Compagnie d’Art Dramatique des Griots. Our objetcives were to introduce black authors and literature and also to create an art schools for African actors

In early 1960s, I abandoned the legitimate stage to became actively involved in the struggle for African liberation. I realize that in Africa, cinema was the most appropriate medium that could be used to raise the political awareness of the masses of people, many of whom were and still are illiterate. At that point I set out to become a filmmaker. Awarded a scholarship by the Soviet Union, I went to Moscow to study filmmaking at the Gorki Studio under Sergei Gerassimov and Mark Donskoy, who introduced me to the techniques and ideology of Soviet cinema. Both with Sembene we worked as assistants won Donskoy’s film Hello Children (1962).

Later in Algeria, where I became Gillo Pontecorvo’s assistant during the filming of The Battle of Algiers.  This 1966 film, which illustrates the bloody confrontations between the Algerian freedom fighters and French paratroopers in 1957 and 1958, now stands as a classic of militant cinema. It was also in Algeria that I made my first motion picture, Monangambeee, in 1969.

I made films because I am deeply interested in both cinema and African history.
I believe that we, as blacks, have a moral responsibility to present a fair account of African history. If we want to eradicate racism, we will have to study our culture very thoroughly in order to present it to the world….If only Westerners make films about Africa, people will only see Africa through their eyes…When Americans made films about Africa, they made westerns transposed in Africa! These films were remarkably well done, but their African characters were, more often than not, stupid and ignorant….In my films, I mainly strive to present issues of importance to Africa or the Black Diaspora from a Black perspective. This does not mean that only Blacks can make those kinds of films or that I should only be limited to Black themes. Culture is an exchange and a mixing of ideas. Whenever culture is limited it stagnates. I strongly believe that tomorrow’s culture will be largely based on images and this is why filmmakers have such an important role to play in their society.

6237_2_140831monangambee_2Excerpt from Monangambeee



Christian Jankowski, German artist and professor at the Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design talks about his work, interests and the responsibility as a fine artist. This year, he is a member of the International Short Film Jury.

christian-00081-3.jpg© Jörg Reichardt

Nowadays how can an artist wake up your interest?

By making an art work that surprises me. With energy, courage, monkeyshines and honesty.

It’s important for you to experiment and to take a risk with the uncertain, what’s your vision behind that?

The hope to find something new. To experience new alliances holds surprises.

You have said that art must differ from the normal life to be art. Why?

Because it does not exist, if it doesn’t end up in the feuilleton one day. At least, it has to be abnormal normal to be recognized.

If you would have a big wall on a skyscraper that everybody can see and you could write one sentence on it. What would you write?

„The same like you“ or „To all the blind people“ or „Everybody can see me“ or „See me, feel me, touch me, heel me“ or „Ask Jenny Holzer“

Which films are out of the official canon / out of conversation that you really miss? Why would you like to highlight it?

I am not missing anything, but curious to see what will be different and outside the official canon. I think nowadays everything is in conversation – also the obsessed action film maker in an African slum gets internationally notice and it´s good like this. I think that everything that looks for conversation gets into conversation.

You respond frequently that it is your responsibility as a fine artist to build bridges between people and different ideologies of life. In terms of that: What was your most impressive experience?

Many. It is as challenging to work on contemporary performances with the Vatican as it is to work with professional sport coaches.

Fine artist, curator and jury member. What’s next?

Actor in a German crime story.


In German language!

23 films from 19 countries will be competing for the Golden and the Silver Bear as well as the Audi Short Film Award, worth € 20,000, and a nomination for the European Film Awards at the 2017 edition of Berlinale Shorts. The Algerian film Monangambeee, produced in 1969 and directed by Sarah Maldoror, will also be screened out of competition.

The International Short Film Jury 2017 will be composed of Christian Jankowski, artist and professor at the Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design, curator and social media manager of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York Kimberly Drew and the artistic director of SANFIC Santiago International Film Festival Carlos Núñez (see press release from December 13, 2016).

The Berlinale Shorts competition will feature works from a wide range of filmmakers including Gabriel Abrantes, Salomé Lamas, Jonathan Vinel, Victor Lindgren, Lukas Marxt and Marcel Odenbach, Bárbara Wagner and Benjamin de Burca, David OReilly and Rainer Kohlberger.

“A preconceived image, a clichéd notion of something or someone, can only alter its form if my own view of things expands to include a new perspective. All of the films selected for Berlinale Shorts 2017 have in common the fact that they invite one to recalibrate one’s own perception,” commented curator Maike Mia Höhne in reference to this year’s  programme.

In his new film keep that dream burning, Berlin-based director Rainer Kohlberger visualizes an intimation for everything new that comes into being: a promise of the greatest possible indeterminacy.

The Boy from H2 on the other hand, produced by the Israeli human rights organisation B’Tselem, takes us right out on the street so that we may be able to experience what it means to live as a 12-year-old in the divided city of Hebron, opposite ever-present security forces.

David OReilly (Please Say Something, Golden Bear for Best Short Film 2009 & RGB XYZ, Berlinale Shorts 2008 ), who will also speak about his filmmaking philosophy at the 2017 edition of Berlinale Talents, will present his new computer game Everything. Everything is the complete opposite of how we commonly conceive of games – there are no levels to be reached, instead there is only the possibility to become anyone and everything. The insight acquired along the way represents a reframing.

Jonathan Vinel (Notre Héritage, Berlinale Shorts 2016 & Tant qu’il nous reste des fusils à pompe, Golden Bear for Best Short Film 2014, both created in collaboration with Caroline Poggi) rearranges sequences from the video game Grand Theft Auto V into a new narrative about losing one’s friends in his film Martin Pleure.

In Avant l’envol, the modern, futuristic architecture that sprang up in Ivory Coast in the wake of independence from France assumes the role of protagonist, an architecture that stands for the newly gained self-confidence of the period. The film Monangambeee, which is part of the collection of Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art e. V. and was only recently digitized, bears witness to a cinematic practice in opposition to colonial oppression.

The extraordinary diversity of Portuguese cinema is represented by no less than four productions at Berlinale Shorts, including among others the most recent work from filmmaker Salomé Lamas (Eldorado XXI, Forum 2016 & Terra de ninguém, Forum 2013), Coup de Grâce, in which a father and daughter explore a space marked by absence. João Salaviza’s new film Altas Cidades de Ossadas follows a Creole rapper on a deep dive into the darkness of night and the aggressive poetry of his lyrics. In 2012 Salaviza took home the Golden Bear for Best Short Film for Rafa, dedicating the award to the Portuguese government: “We are in a moment where we really don’t know what will happen,” Salaviza declared at the time, adding that the dedication was contingent on the administration taking a stand to improve conditions for the country’s filmmakers. Today the situation in Portugal has improved considerably through structural changes in funding.

201716202_Centauro.jpgCentauro (Zentaur) von Nicolás Suárez

Included among the films to be screened at Berlinale Shorts 2017 are:

Altas Cidades de Ossadas (High Cities of Bone), João Salaviza, Portugal, 19’ (WP)

Avant l’envol, Laurence Bonvin, Switzerland, 20’ (IP)

The Boy from H2, Helen Yanovsky, Israel / Palestinian Territories, 21’ (WP)

Call of Cuteness, Brenda Lien, Germany, 4’ (WP)

Centauro (Centaur), Nicolás Suárez, Argentina, 14’ (IP)

Cidade Pequena (Small Town), Diogo Costa Amarante, Portugal, 19’ (IP)

Coup de Grâce, Salomé Lamas, Portugal, 26’ (WP)

The Crying Conch, Vincent Toi, Canada, 20’ (WP)

Ensueño en la Pradera (Reverie in the Meadow), Esteban Arrangoiz Julien, Mexico, 17’ (WP)

Estás vendo coisas (You are seeing things), Bárbara Wagner & Benjamin de Burca, Brazil, 18’ (IP)

Everything, David OReilly, USA / Ireland, 11’ (WP)

Le film de l’été (A Summer’s Film), Emmanuel Marre, France / Belgium, 30’ (WP)

Fishing Is Not Done On Tuesdays, Lukas Marxt & Marcel Odenbach, Germany / Austria, 15’ (WP)

Fuera de Temporada (Out of Season), Sabrina Campos, Argentina, 23’ (WP)

Hiwa, Jacqueline Lentzou, Greece, 11’ (WP)

Os Humores Artificiais (The Artificial Humors), Gabriel Abrantes, Portugal, 30’ (WP)

keep that dream burning, Rainer Kohlberger, Germany / Austria, 8’ (WP)

Kometen (The Comet), Victor Lindgren, Sweden, 11’ (IP)

Martin Pleure (Martin Cries), Jonathan Vinel, France, 16’ (WP)

Miss Holocaust, Michalina Musielak, Poland / Germany, 22’ (WP)

Monangambeee, Sarah Maldoror, Algeria, 15’ – Out of competition

Oh Brother Octopus, Florian Kunert, Germany, 27’ (WP)

The Rabbit Hunt, Patrick Bresnan, USA / Hungary, 12’ (IP)

Street of Death, Karam Ghossein,  Lebanon / Germany, 23’ (WP)



Berlinale Poster 2017 – Beloved Bears Return

To attract attention to the Festival these inquisitive animals are again making their rounds through nocturnal Berlin. “Berlin is big and this year we’ll again follow the bear tracks to some typical spots in the capital,” remarks a delighted Berlinale Director Dieter Kosslick. Once more the motifs have been designed by Velvet, a Swiss advertising agency.

The six posters in the series will be visible around town as of mid-January 2017. They will also be on sale at the Berlinale Online Shop starting January 16. Here you can see the other posters.




In German language!

Artist and professor at the Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design Christian Jankowski; curator and social media manager at the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art Kimberly Drew; and the artistic director of SANFIC (Santiago International Film Festival) Carlos Núñez make up the 2017 International Short Film Jury. They will award the Golden and the Silver Bear, as well as the Audi Short Film Award. In addition, the Jury will nominate one film for European Short Film 2017 at the European Film Awards.

Maike Mia Höhne, curator of Berlinale Shorts, comments on the 2017 Jury: “The top-notch biographies of Jankowski, Drew and Núñez give us a jury for 2017 that combines three highly accomplished and very different points of view. I’m very pleased!”

Christian Jankowski (Germany)

Jankowski works in the area of concept and media arts using film, video, photography and performance, as well as painting, sculpture and installations. His special focus is on the performative interaction between the artist and an audience far removed from the professional art world. His works are exhibited in numerous museums and collections, and have been shown at the Venice Biennale in 1999 and 2013, among other events. In 2016, he curated the European Biennial of Contemporary Art in Zurich, “Manifesta 11”. Christian Jankowski also holds a professorship in sculpture at the Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design.

Kimberly Drew (USA)

Kimberly Drew is a curator, writer and the social media manager at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Her blog “Black Contemporary Art”, founded in 2011, and her Instagram channel “museummammy” are among the most influential digital platforms for African and African-American art worldwide. She has been awarded the AIR Gallery Feminist Curator Award and the Gold Rush Award by the Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation for her curatorial work. Kimberly Drew studied art history and African-American studies with an emphasis on museum studies at Smith College in Northampton, USA.

Carlos Núñez (Chile)

Festival programmer and film producer Carlos Núñez is the co-founder and artistic director of SANFIC, the Santiago International Film Festival, an important forum for Chilean and Latin American film. In addition, he is the director and co-founder of the production and distribution company Storyboard Media. Among other films, he has co-produced La Mujer de Barro by Sergio Castro San Martín, which screened in Forum at the 2015 Berlinale. Carlos Núñez is also a university lecturer and a member of Cinema23, a platform for the promotion of film culture in Latin America, Spain and Portugal.

Maike Mia Ho¦êhne SAM_4004.jpg

Maike Mia Höhne, curator of Berlinale Shorts © Sarah Bernhard

Jury picture credits by Jörg Reichhardt, Naima Green & Nicolás Tello



von Christian Bomm

Viele Wege führen nach Rom, auch der des jüngeren Filmemachens. In Rom nämlich schrieb Ovid um das Jahr Null seine Geschichte von Narziss, jenem Jüngling der aufgrund seiner Arroganz und seiner abweisenden Art verflucht wurde: Über einen See gebeugt, verliebt er sich in sein eigenes unerreichbares Spiegelbild erstarrt vor Rührung und sehnt sich zu Tode. Noch in der Unterwelt soll er am Wasser gesessen sein und sich angebetet haben. Bei der Spiegelung auf den Wellen könnte man vom ersten menschlichen Bewegtbild sprechen.

Zur gleichen Zeit, Ovids Mythen machten gerade die Runde, traf ein junger Römer namens Obsius in der Stadt ein und brachte Plinius dem Älteren ein Gestein aus Äthiopien mit. Es hatte noch keinen Namen und der Naturforscher taufte es nach seinem Entdecker: Obsidian. Dieses Gestein entsteht, wenn heiße Lava in Wasser fällt und erstarrt. Die rasche Kühlung erzeugt ein schwarzes Lavaglas. Seine Bruchstellen und Kanten sind messerscharf und deshalb nutzen es Steinzeitmenschen vornehmlich als Waffen zur Jag oder im Krieg. Glattgeschliffen wurde Obsidian schon vor 10000 Jahren als Spiegel verwendet, das sieht in etwa so aus wie Kubricks Monolith in Space Odyssee, nur kleiner . Der große Vorteil des Obsidianspiegels: Das eigene Abbild wurde transportabel.

Jumpcut: Heute schauen Menschen, über Smartphones und Tablets gebeugt, ihre virtuellen Ebenbilder an, zeichnen sie auf, verbreiten sie im Internet und erzeugen Content. Das Netz ist voll mit narzisstischen Selbstdarstellungen und Ratgebern und überhaupt: Bezieht man Youtubefilme bestimmter Längen ins Spektrum der Kurzfilmgenres ein, haben jene Formen, bei denen Kamera, Regie und Darsteller in einer Person zusammen kommen, einen hohen Anteil. Autorenproduktionen neuerer Schule, könnte man sagen. Manchmal kommt dabei nicht nur Content, sondern ein Film mit Inhalt raus.

Night Fishing

In der Festivallandschaft des Kurzfilms hielt der Smartphone-Film auch recht bald Einzug. Den GOldenen Bären gewann 2011 PARKing Chance‘s Kurzfilm NIGHT FISHING, der komplett mit einem iPhone gedreht wurde. Und schon 2008 schoss Markus Wambsganss seinen Film IN URANIAS mit einem Handy. Er filmte jeweils Reisen in den USA und dem Iran. Darüber legte er Jasmin Tabatabais Stimme, die den inneren Monolog eines iranisch-amerikanischen Moslems spricht. Das narzisstische Prinzip des Ichs im Hier und Jetzt muss also per se nichts schlechtes sein – Selbstreflexion eben, bestenfalls Selbsterkenntnis. Und die war ja das höchste Ziel der alten Griechen und Römer, wenn sie nachdenklich in ihre Spiegel  aus Silber oder Obsidian schauten.

Obsidian besteht im Übrigen bis zu siebzig Prozent aus Kieselsäure Si(OH)4 . Spaltet man die Säure auf entsteht Siliziumdioxid, das wichtigste Produkt zur Herstellung von Computerchips. Smartphones, Tablets und Digi-Cams sind also damit die Urenkel der steinzeitlichen Werkzeuge, Waffen und Spiegel. Doch war der Obsidan mit seinen Einsatzmöglichkeiten entweder Mittel zur Selbstzerstörung oder Selbsterkenntnis, sind seine heutigen Verwandten immer beides: Jedes aufgenommene Video, jeder kurze Smartfilm sind auch Informationen in einem Techno-Krieg. Selfie-Partyvideos beenden Karrieren, Dokumentationen von Straßenunruhen stürzen Diktaturen. Waffen sind eben auch zur Verteidigung da, man darf es nicht allzu schwarz sehen.

Insofern ist der auf dem Handy gedrehte Film nicht nur minderes Youtubematerial sondern subversiv, bisweilen avantgardistisch, und bringt neue Impulse in die Kurzfilmproduktion. Nicht nur ästhetisch, auch inhaltlich und vor allem in der Herstellung, die flexibler und oftmals förderfrei zu hoher Qualität und großem Publikum führen kann (Reichweite sagt man heute bei Filmen im Netz, Wurfweite sagte man bei Speerspitzen).  Auch wenn man hier noch immer von einer kleinen Menge im riesigen See der Contentproduktion spricht, in dem sich neue Generationen von Filmemachern spiegeln.

In Uranias from mrks.16 on Vimeo.

Weißblende: Dreht sich die Menschheit seit Jahrtausenden tatsächlich um sich selbst und das immer gleiche Material der Selbst-Erkenntnis und Selbstzerstörung, so sorgt doch das Kreisen heute für viele neue Möglichkeiten, Sprachen und Bilder kurzen Films. Und das muss man einfach auch mal positiv sehen. Ich fange jetzt an, einen Film über Elektroschrotthalden in Äthiopien machen. In diesem Sinne: Ermächtige dich selbst! Erkenne dich selbst! Mache Filme!

Christian Bomm studierte Kunst und visuelle Kommunikation an der Bauhaus-Universität in Weimar. Er diplomierte mit zwei Filmen zu Mikrotechnologien, Mythen und Reflexion. Seit 2013 arbeitet er für die Berlinale.