Ha presieduto la giuria internazionale Juliette Binoche, coadiuvata da Justin Chang, Sandra Hüller, Sebastián Lelio, Rajendra Roy e Trudie Styler.
Con un pizzico di orgoglio nazionale iniziamo proprio dall’Italia, vince l’Orso d’Argento per la miglior sceneggiatura La Paranza di Bambini di Roberto Saviano, Maurizio Braucci e Claudio Giovannesi, di quest’ultimo la regia. La storia si svolge a Napoli, in uno dei quartieri più popolosi. E’ una full immersion tra italianità ed espressioni di criminalità – oramai internazionale – vissuta sin nei primi anni di vita. Vespe, discoteca, donne, soldi e droga fanno da sfondo ad una condizione sociale di difficile superamento proprio perché radicata nei valori più intimi e nei desideri dei protagonisti. Saviano ha dedicato il premio alle ONG che salvano vite nel Mediterraneo e ai maestri di strada che a Napoli aiutano i bambini nei quartieri. Difficile fare il quadro dell’esistenza, ha aggiunto, “raccontare nel nostro paese la verità oggi è una cosa molto complessa”. Commosso l’appello e la dedica di Maurizio Braucci in favore dei bambini del sud Italia, con l’invito ad un maggiore supporto per la situazione illustrata nel film. Giovannesi ha concluso ringraziando la giuria, il suo team, i ragazzi che hanno recitato nel film, la sua compagna Manuela. La sua dedica è andata all’Italia, con la speranza che l’arte, la cultura e la formazione tornino a essere una priorità.
Vince l’Orso d’oro per il miglior film Synonymes, il film di Nadav Lapid della SBS Films con Tom Mercier, Quentin Dolmaire e Louise Chevillotte, una coproduzione franco-tedesco-israeliana.
Doppio centro per la pellicola cinese So Long, My Son di Wang Xiaoshuai, che aveva riscosso i maggiori consensi dalla critica e dal pubblico: conquista ben due Orsi d’Argento, per la miglior interpretazione femminile, l’attrice Yong Mei, e per la miglior interpretazione maschile, l’attore Wang Jingchun.
La lista completa:
Orso d’oro per il miglior film (consegnato al produttore)
“Synonymes”, di Nadav Lapid
Orso d’argento, Gran Premio della Giuria
“Grâce à Dieu”, di François Ozon
Orso d’argento, Premio Alfred Bauer (nuove prospettive)
“System Crasher”, di Nora Fingscheidt
Orso d’Argento, Miglior Regia
Angela Schanelec, per “I Was at Home, But”
Orso d’Argento, miglior attrice
Yong Mei in “Di jiu tian chang” (So Long, My Son)
Orso d’Argento, miglior attore
Wang Jingchun in “Di jiu tian chang” (So Long, My Son)
Orso d’Argento, miglior sceneggiatura
Maurizio Braucci, Claudio Giovannesi and Roberto Saviano per “La paranza dei bambini” (Piranhas)
Orso d’Argento, per il miglior contributo artistico
Rasmus Videbæk per “Ut og stjæle hester” (Out Stealing Horses)
I film in concorso
- Der Boden unter den Füßen (The Ground beneath My Feet) by Marie Kreutzer (Austria)
- Di jiu tian chang (So Long, My Son) by Wang Xiaoshuai (People’s Republic of China)
- Elisa y Marcela (Elisa & Marcela) by Isabel Coixet (Spain)
- Der Goldene Handschuh (The Golden Glove) by Fatih Akin (Germany / France)
- Gospod postoi, imeto i’ e Petrunija (God Exists, Her Name is Petrunya) by Teona Strugar Mitevska (Macedonia / Belgium / Slovenia / Croatia / France)
- Grâce à Dieu (By the Grace of God) by François Ozon (France)
- Ich war zuhause, aber (I Was at Home, But) by Angela Schanelec (Germany / Serbia)
- The Kindness of Strangers by Lone Scherfig (Denmark / Canada / Sweden / Germany / France) – Opening film
- Kız Kardeşler (A Tale of Three Sisters) by Emin Alper (Turkey / Germany / Netherlands / Greece)
- Jones by Agnieszka Holland (Poland / United Kingdom / Ukraine)
- Öndög by Wang Quan’an (Mongolia)
- La paranza dei bambini (Piranhas) by Claudio Giovannesi (Italy)
- Répertoire des villes disparues (Ghost Town Anthology) by Denis Côté (Canada)
- Synonymes (Synonyms) by Nadav Lapid (France / Israel / Germany)
- Systemsprenger (System Crasher) by Nora Fingscheidt (Germany)
- Ut og stjæle hester (Out Stealing Horses) by Hans Petter Moland (Norway / Sweden / Denmark)
The Kindness of Strangers
Danimarca, Canada, Svezia, Germania, Francia
Di Lone Scherfig, con Zoe Kazan, Andrea Riseborough, Tahar Rahim, Caleb Landry Jones, Jay Baruchel
Durata: 112 min.
Produzione: Malene Blenkov, Sandra Cunningham / Creative Alliance – Strada Films
Distribuzione: HanWay Films
Shot in darkly nostalgic images, Lone Scherfig’s densely atmospheric film tells the moving story of a number of people in crisis. A modern urban fairy tale about love, hope and a new beginning set against the backdrop of harsh social conditions. Clara arrives in wintry New York with her two sons on the back seat of her car. The journey, which she has disguised as an adventure for her children’s sake, is soon revealed to be an escape from an abusive husband and father. He is a cop, and Clara is desperately trying to elude his attempts to pursue her. The three have little more than their car, and when this is towed away, they are left penniless on the street. But the big cold city shows mercy: in their search for refuge, the family meets a selfless nurse named Alice who arranges beds for them at an emergency shelter. While stealing food at a Russian restaurant called ‘Winter Palace’, Clara meets an ex-con, Marc, who has been given the chance to help the old eatery regain its former glory. The ‘Winter Palace’ soon becomes a place of unexpected encounters between people who are all undergoing some sort of crisis and whom fate has now brought together. With a keen eye for character, Lone Scherfig explores human behaviour in extreme conditions. She depicts the harshness of life in the urban jungle, but she also demonstrates what can grow when strangers approach each other in friendship and with an open heart.
The ground beneath my Feet
(titolo originale: Der Boden Unter den Füssen)
Lola is almost thirty. A successful management consultant, she is constantly on the move between the companies she is tasked with restructuring. Her chic apartment in Vienna is more of a mailbox and a launderette than a home. A hundred working hours a week is not uncommon in addition to five sessions at the gym, expensive dinners with clients and nights spent in sterile hotels. Her career, which she is advancing with cleverness, efficiency and ruthless cunning, appears to be unstoppable. She applies a similarly disciplined approach when it comes to managing her private life. This means that nobody is allowed to know about the existence of her older sister Conny, who has been suffering from mental illness for a long time and who never leaves her apartment. But when Conny attempts to commit suicide, Lola searches for a way to be there for her. Marie Kreutzer’s portrait of the jet-setting Lola reveals that there is sometimes just a thin line separating polar opposites such as order and chaos, rise and fall – even for someone who thrives in a society fixated on achievement.
di Marie Kreutzer, con Valerie Pachner, Pia Hierzegger, Mavie Hörbiger, Michelle Barthel, Marc Benjamin
So Long, My Son
(Titolo originale: Di jiu tian chang)
Repubblica popolare cinese
di Wang Xiaoshuai, con Wang Jingchun, Yong Mei, Qi Xi, Wang Yuan, Du Jiang.
Durata: 185 min.
A family saga as social panorama. Spanning the upheaval that followed the Chinese Cultural Revolution to the present day and told in sweeping tableaux, this film exposes the deep scars that lie beneath the surface of an ostensibly unbroken success story. ‘We’re waiting to grow old’. This sentence briefly sums up Yaoyun and his wife Liyun’s bitter realisation about their lives. They were once a happy family – until their son drowned playing by a reservoir. And so Yaojun and Liyun leave their home and plunge into the big city, although nobody knows them there and they cannot even understand the local dialect. Their adopted son Liu Xing does not offer them the comfort they had hoped for either. Defiantly rejecting his ‘foreign’ parents, he one day disappears altogether. The married couple are repeatedly enmeshed in their memories. Finally, they decide to return to the site of their lost hopes. In this family saga spanning three decades of Chinese history, the private and the political merge and the individual gets caught up in the gears of a society in the throes of constant change. Part melodrama, part critique of the times, this film takes us from the country’s upheaval in the 1980s following the Cultural Revolution to the prospering turbo-capitalism of the present day. Told in sweeping tableaux, it makes visible the deep scars that lie beneath the surface of an ostensibly unbroken success story.
Elisa y Marcela
di Isabel Coixet, con Natalia de Molina, Greta Fernández, Sara Casanovas, Tamar Novas, María Pujalte
Prodotto da: Rodar y Rodar, Legal Zenit TV, La Nube Películas
Spain around 1900. Elisa and Marcela have been in love since their schooldays. At a time when lesbian love is considered a sacrilege, these women refuse to be separated and this exposes them to great dangers. A paean to passion, dignity and resistance. When Marcela and Elisa meet on their first day in high school, it is love at first sight. A deep friendship begins which soon turns into a romantic relationship. Nothing can prevent the two girls’ feelings for each other, not even Marcela’s suspicious parents, who eventually send their daughter to boarding school. Years later, the two women meet again and decide to live together. Both are respected teachers, but their partnership has to be kept secret from the critical Catholic population. For this reason, Elisa decides to pose as a man and marry Marcela. Their wedding photo depicts two young women, one in a black dress with her hair up, the other with a short haircut and wearing a suit; both are looking hopefully into the future. But their love remains exposed to great dangers. Based on true events, Isabel Coixet’s film makes use of black-and-white images and letters for her unfussy but deeply empathetic rendition of the story of Elisa Sánchez Loriga and Marcela Gracia Ibeas, who tied the knot in the church of San Jorge in A Coruña in Spain in 1901. A paean to passion, dignity and resistance.
The Golden Glove
(titolo originale: Der goldene Handschuh)
di Fatih Akin, con Jonas Dassler, Margarethe Tiesel, Katja Studt, Martina Eitner-Acheampong, Hark Bohm
A portrait of the infamous serial killer Fritz Honka, who strangled and dismembered lonely, down-at-heel women in Hamburg’s St. Pauli district. A social study about the flip side of the West German economic miracle. Adapted from the novel by Heinz Strunk. Hamburg’s St. Pauli district in the 1970s is a neighbourhood of night-time entertainment and its nocturnal figures: habitual drinkers and prostitutes, gambling addicts and other lonely souls. Fritz Honka, a short man with thick horn-rimmed glasses and an unfortunate face, is one of them. An unskilled labourer, he picks up lonely older women, down-at-heel drinkers, in a local boozer called ‘Zum Goldenen Handschuh’ (The Golden Glove). Nobody realises that he batters and strangles these women in his attic apartment, then dismembers them and disposes of their remains behind the attic wall. Distributing scented air-fresheners throughout the building to disguise the stench of decay, he blames the neighbouring Greek family for the penetrating smells. Based on the true case of serial killer Fritz Honka and on Heinz Strunk’s 2016 crime novel, Fatih Akin has created a portrait of a socially depraved, violent criminal, driven by misogyny, sexual greed and sentimentality. Akin’s film is a social study of the flip side of the then recent economic miracle; it is about individuals thrown off-kilter by the war and post-war turmoil in a dark Germany wholly lacking in confidence.
God Exists, Her Name Is Petrunya
(titolo originale: Gospod postoi, imeto i’ e Petrunija
Macedonia / Belgio / Slovenia / Croazia / Francia
di Teona Strugar Mitevska, con Zorica Nusheva, Labina Mitevska, Simeon Moni Damevski, Suad Begovski, Violeta Shapkovska
Durata: 100 min.
Producer: Labina Mitevska / Sisters and Brother Mitevski
Distribuzione: Pyramide International
Traditional diving to celebrate Epiphany is a man’s business. But this time it is Petrunya who retrieves the holy cross from the icy waters. Come what may, she defends her triumph. A satire about a society full of stereotypes and fatal opportunism. ‘Tell them you’re 24’, advises Petrunya’s mother as her daughter heads off to another interview. But Petrunya is 31; moreover, she has studied history, a subject that no one in Macedonia seems to need. So there she sits in front of her potential employer, a factory owner, who looks down on her floral dress and refuses to take her seriously. On her way home – naturally, she did not get the job – Petrunya decides to take the plunge. It is Epiphany and, like every year, the young men of the city are diving for the holy cross that the priest has thrown into the icy river. This time, Petrunya is quicker than everyone else and ends up holding the trophy aloft for the TV cameras. For one whole day and one night, she will defend the cross, accompanied by much public commotion and against the closed ranks of the male world. Teona Strugar Mitevska delivers an angry yet melancholic satire that questions the status of democratic change in Macedonian society and passes scathing judgement on representatives of the church, the judiciary and the media. The film’s sympathies are all with the determined woman who asserts herself against archaic traditions and paralysing opportunism.
By the Grace of God
(titolo originale: Grâce à Dieu
Durata: 137 min.
Produzione: Eric Altmayer, Nicolas Altmayer / Mandarin Production
When Alexandre learns that the priest who abused him as a boy is still working with children, he and other victims take action against the perpetrator. A psychological study and an angry polemic, but also a film about the pain that is the price of truth. Alexandre lives with his wife and children in Lyon. One day he discovers by chance that the priest who abused him when he was a boy scout is still working with young people. Long repressed memories awaken. Distraught, Alexandre finally finds the courage to take action against the man. His search for further victims of the clergyman, who is highly respected in his office, leads Alexandre to François and Emmanuel. Each of these three men is struggling with himself in a different way. And each of them will have to do battle with the shadows of their past in order to cope with the far-reaching consequences of this process. The creation of the self-help organisation ‘La Parole Libérée’ (The Liberated Word) is just the first step. Based on the real case of Father Bernard Preynat who in 2016 was charged with sexually assaulting around 70 boys in Lyon, François Ozon portrays the victims as adult men and reveals the lifelong wounds they have sustained. At the same time, the film criticises the church’s silence on paedophilia and asks about its complicity. As of January 2019, Cardinal Philippe Barbarin is standing trial for ‘non-denunciation of sexual aggression’.
François Ozon: born in Paris, France in 1967, this director and screenwriter studied at La Fémis film school and is now one of the most renowned filmmakers in his country. His work has already screened in the Berlinale Competition four times, with the ensemble cast of one of his most successful films, the comedy 8 femmes, winning the Silver Bear in 2002. In 2012 he was a member of the International Jury. He has made four films with Charlotte Rampling who this year is being presented with the Honorary Golden Bear for her lifetime achievement; Sous le Sable and Swimming Pool are both screening in the Homage.
Francia / Israele / Germania
di Nadav Lapid, con Tom Mercier, Quentin Dolmaire, Louise Chevillotte
Durata: 123 min.
Produttori: Saïd Ben Saïd, Michel Merkt / SBS Films
Distribuzione: SBS International
Yoav, a young Israeli, is determined to wipe out his origins and become French. In Paris, he abandons the Hebrew language and strives in all sorts of ways to find a new identity. A tragicomic puzzle that wisely knows how to keep its secrets. In Paris, things do not exactly get off to a good start for Yoav. He knocks on the door of a flat, only to discover the place is empty and, while he is taking a bath there, his things are stolen. Yet this young Israeli had arrived with such great expectations. He is determined to get rid of his nationality as quickly as possible. For him, being Israeli is like a tumour that has to be surgically removed. Becoming French, on the other hand, would quite simply mean his salvation. In order to erase his origins, Yoav first tries to replace his language. From now on, he will not utter a single word of Hebrew. The dictionary becomes his constant companion. The necessary visits to the Israeli embassy annoy him; he finds his compatriots to be a total burden. But the naturalisation test also has its pitfalls. And the young French couple whom he befriends has some rather strange ideas about how to help him.
Based on his own experiences, Nadav Lapid explores the challenges of putting down roots in a new place. His attempt to find himself awakens past demons and opens up an existential abyss. A tragicomic puzzle that wisely knows how to keep its secrets.
A Tale of Three Sisters
Titolo originale: Kız Kardeşler
Turchia / Germania / Olanda / Grecia
di Emin Alper, con Cemre Ebüzziya, Ece Yüksel, Helin Kandemir, Kayhan Açıkgöz, Müfit Kayacan
Durata: 108 min.
Produzione: Nadir Öperli, Muzaffer Yıldırım / Liman Film / NuLook Production
Distribuzione: The Match Factory
There is no escape from patriarchy for these three sisters in a village in the Anatolian mountains. Their dream of a better life dies, but their bond remains. The gulf between life here and in the town is made palpable in images of the rugged landscape. The three sisters Reyhan (20), Nurhan (16) and Havva (13) all live with their father in a remote village in central Anatolia. One after the other they were sent away to town to work as housemaids, but each of them has now returned. The last of the sisters to do so is Nurhan. She beat the local doctor’s son because he wet his bed every night. When Reyhan returned home pregnant, her father hastily married her off to the shepherd, Veysel. One day, the inebriated Veysel rises up against the village elder; his actions have dramatic consequences. Even if the dream of a better future does not come true for any of these young women and they always seem to be getting into arguments with each other, they nonetheless steadfastly stick together. While they wait for the snow-covered roads to become passable again, father and daughters pass the time with stories.
Emin Alper, who grew up in the Anatolian mountains himself, unfolds his fairy tale in haunting images. He portrays a society in which neither women nor men have a chance to break their predetermined cycle, and yet he still leaves room for hope.
I Was at Home, But
(titolo originale: Ich war zuhause, aber)
di Angela Schanelec, con Maren Eggert, Jakob Lassalle, Clara Möller, Franz Rogowski, Lilith Stangenberg
Durata: 105 min.
Produzione: Angela Schanelec / Nachmittagfilm Angela Schanelec
Distribuzione: Deutsche Kinemathek
After having disappeared for a week, Astrid’s 13-year-old son Phillip returns home one day without saying a word. Both his mother and teachers suspect that his disappearance may be related to the loss of his father. Only gradually does everyday life get back on track. Astrid now finds herself confronted with questions that provide a whole new perspective on her middle-class existence and her career in Berlin’s cultural sector. Her ideas about art also begin to change. At home, it becomes more and more difficult for this single mother to accept that her son is leading his own life. And then Phillip is admitted to hospital with blood poisoning. Astrid is a nervous wreck, wiped out by worry, guilt and her feelings of failure. But Phillip and his little sister do not turn away from her. The family may be disintegrating, but only to form itself anew. The camera in this film remains at a discrete distance, providing mother and children with the space and time they need to rediscover and reappraise their feelings. These scenes are framed by others depicting school rehearsals of Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’, the purchase of a broken bicycle and other loose storylines that all echo each other.
(titolo originale: Systemsprenger)
by Nora Fingscheidt | with Helena Zengel, Albrecht Schuch, Gabriela Maria Schmeide, Lisa Hagmeister, Melanie Straub
Dutata: 118 min.
Produzione: Peter Hartwig, Jonas Weydemann, Jakob D. Weydemann / Kineo Filmproduktion / Weydemann Bros.
Distribuzione: Beta Cinema
Nine-year-old Benni radically defies every rule. But this feared ‘system crasher’s’ only desire is to stop living in a residential home and go back to her mother. An intense drama about one child’s overwhelming need for love and security. Bernadette, or Benni as she prefers to be known, is a delicate-looking girl with unbridled energy. She is a ‘system crasher’. This term is used to describe children who break every single rule; children who refuse to accept any kind of structure and who gradually fall through the cracks in Germany’s child and welfare services. No matter where this nine-year-old is taken in, she is booted out again after a short time. And that is exactly what she is after, because all she wants is to be able to live with her mother again: a woman who is totally unable to cope with her daughter’s incalculable behaviour.
Made from her own multi-award-winning script, Nora Fingscheidt has created an intense drama about one child’s overwhelming need for love and security and the potential for violence that this engenders. At the same time, the film depicts the tireless attempts of educators and psychologists who use respect, trust and confidence to create a way forward for children who threaten to destroy others and themselves as a result of their unpredictable outbursts.
Out Stealing Horses
(titolo originale: Ut og stjæle hester)
di Hans Petter Moland, con Stellan Skarsgård, Bjørn Floberg, Tobias Santelmann, Jon Ranes, Danica Curcic
Norvegia / Svezia / Danimarca
Durata: 122 min.
Lingua: svedese e norvegese
Produzione: Håkon Øverås, Turid Øversveen / 4 1/2 Fiksjon
Trond Sander, 67, recalls the summer of 1948. When this blissful time came to an end, nothing was the same as before. A moving father-and-son story, based on Per Petterson’s novel ‘Out Stealing Horses’, set against breathtaking natural scenery. November, 1999. Following the death of his wife, 67-year-old Trond Sander has retired from Oslo to a small village in the east of Norway. The millennium is coming to an end, and so too it would appear is Trond’s life. One winter night he suddenly recognises an old acquaintance from his youth in his neighbour, Lars. The encounter brings back memories of 1948 when Trond spent an entire summer in a simple wooden hut by the river with his much-admired father. Long afternoons in the forest, rides on wild horses and hard work felling wood begin to blur into a series of images of carefree happiness but also fateful experiences. Filmed in the midst of a breathtaking landscape of mountains and rivers between Norway and Sweden, Hans Petter Moland unfolds a drama about love, loss and disappointment, lifelong traumas and feelings of guilt. Based on Per Petterson’s award-winning novel ‘Ut og stjæle hester’ (‘Out Stealing Horses’), the film also addresses Norway’s Nazi past. The oscillation between collaboration and resistance also had an impact on personal decisions and became an indelible part of Trond’s childhood memories.
Ghost Town Anthology
(titolo originale: Répertoire des villes disparues)
di Denis Côté, con Robert Naylor, Josée Deschênes, Jean-Michel Anctil, Larissa Corriveau, Rémi Goulet
Durata: 96 minuti
Produzione: Ziad Touma / Couzin Films
Distribuzione: Films Boutique
Irénée-les-Neiges is a remote village somewhere in Quebec with only 215 inhabitants. When young Simon Dubé dies in a car accident, the villagers’ tranquil and regulated existence is thrown out of step. People are decidedly reluctant to talk about the particulars of the accident. For Simon’s parents and his brother, their grief means that time seems to lose all meaning and their mood gradually spreads to others. The mayoress’s pragmatism increasingly comes to nought, and this older married couple find themselves unable to maintain their quirky habits in peace. Snowy, frosty winter days stretch out into infinity. Something barely tangible descends on the region, like a veil. Mysterious figures emerge from the fog and commit strange acts. To intensify the unreal atmosphere, this film was shot on 16mm. Stories from another time appear to lurk behind the coarse-grained, flickering celluloid images. But what seems strange is sometimes more familiar than one might suspect.
La paranza dei bambini
di Claudio Giovannesi, con Francesco Di Napoli, Viviana Aprea, Mattia Piano Del Balzo, Ciro Vecchione, Ciro Pellecchia
Durata: 110 min
Produzione: Carlo Degli Esposti, Nicola Serra / Palomar
Distribuzione: Elle Driver
Six boys race on their scooters through the narrow streets of their Sanità neighbourhood in Naples. Nicola, Briatò, Lollipop & Co. are fearless daredevils, desperate to make money like their role models, and wear designer clothes and the latest sneakers. These 15-year-olds use the city’s rooftops for assault rifle practice. They deal drugs and do not hesitate to use their weapons to take control of the neighbourhood. Their smart leader, Nicola, knows the rules: in order to get his gang into the game and quickly to the top, he challenges one of the old bosses. But whoever is in charge today may well be dead tomorrow. When his girlfriend causes Nicola to be caught between all fronts, he is forced to make a decision.
Neapolitan author and Camorra expert Roberto Saviano (‘Gomorrha’, 2006) wrote the screenplay for this adaptation of his eponymous novel with Maurizio Braucci and Claudio Giovannesi. Portrayed by non-professional actors from the locality where it is set, this film provides a shocking portrait of a younger generation in a state of permanent war. These are children who are willing to deal in drugs, rob and kill in a world without a future, where money, power and survival are all that matters. The director, screenwriter and musician was born in Rome, Italy in 1978 and works in both fiction and documentary. His films have screened at numerous international festivals and have won a number of awards, including the Nastro d’Argento Italian film prize. He was one of the nine directors to work on 9 x 10 Novanta, a compilation documentary that screened at the 71st Venice International Film Festival. He has also directed two episodes of the television series Gomorrha.
Filmography: 2009 La casa sulle nuvole · Fratelli d’Italia 2012 Alì ha gli occhi azzurri 2013 Wolf 2016 Fiore 2018 La paranza dei bambini (Piranhas)
di Agnieszka Holland, con James Norton, Vanessa Kirby, Peter Sarsgaard, Joseph Mawle, Fenella Woolgar
Polonia / Regno Unito / Ucraina
Durata: 141 min.
Produzione: Klaudia Śmieja-Rostworowska, Stanisław Dziedzic, Andrea Chalupa / NEM Corp
Distribuzione: WestEnd Films
In March 1933, Welsh journalist Gareth Jones takes a train from Moscow to Kharkov in the Ukraine. He disembarks at a small station and sets off on foot on a journey through the country where he experiences at first hand the horrors of a famine. Everywhere there are dead people, and everywhere he goes he meets henchmen of the Soviet secret service who are determined to prevent news about the catastrophe from getting out to the general public. Stalin’s forced collectivisation of agriculture has resulted in misery and ruin; the policy is tantamount to mass murder. Supported by Ada Brooks, a New York Times reporter, Jones succeeds in spreading the shocking news in the West, thereby putting his powerful rival, the Pulitzer Prize-winning, pro-Stalin journalist Walter Duranty, firmly in his place. Shot in Poland, Scotland and in original locations in the Ukraine, Agnieszka Holland’s film recalls the legendary journalist Gareth Jones (1905-1935) who, despite fierce resistance, could not be dissuaded from telling the truth. Jones’s encounter with the young George Orwell is said to have inspired the latter’s dystopian parable ‘Animal Farm’ (1945).
di Wang Quan’an, con Dulamjav Enkhtaivan, Aorigeletu, Norovsambuu Batmunkh, Gangtemuer Arild
Durata: 100 min.
Produzione: Wang Quan’an / New Theatre Union
Distribuzione: Arclight Films
A naked woman is found murdered in the Mongolian steppe. Overnight, a young and inexperienced policeman has to secure the crime scene. Since he is not familiar with the dangers on site, a local herder is sent to guard him and the body. This resolute woman in her mid-thirties knows how to handle a rifle – and how to scare away wolves. She lights a fire against the cold. Alcohol also helps them to stay warm. At her instigation, the two get closer to each other. The next morning, they will go their separate ways. At the centre of this film is a tenacious woman in the uninhabited expanse of the steppe. This otherwise self-sufficient herder, known to everyone as ‘dinosaur’, only tolerates her caring neighbour when there is a problem with her herd. Anything that goes beyond that, she brusquely rejects. As for herself and her future, she has her very own plan, one which is related to the lonely landscape and its myths. The setting of this film is far more than just a backdrop; rather, its own singular reality seeps into the narrative. The story itself is full of comic moments and surprising twists and turns; it also handles existential themes in a beautifully casual fashion.
Wang Quan’an: the Chinese screenwriter and director graduated from the Beijing Film Academy in 1991. His debut film, Yue Shi (Lunar Eclipse), screened in the Berlinale Forum in 2002; two years later, Jingzhe (The Story Of Er Mei) screened in Panorama. His third feature film, Tu ya de hun shi (Tuya’s Marriage) won the Golden Bear for Best Film in 2007. His drama Tuan Yuan (Apart Together) was the Berlinale’s opening film in 2010 when it won the Silver Bear for Best Script; Bai lu yuan (White Deer Plain) screened in the 2012 Competition. He was a member of the International Jury in 2017.