Review

Films 2012

Promising the Moon

Original Title: Das Blaue vom Himmel
Director: Hans Steinbichler, color, 104 minutes, Germany 2010/2011

The distant relationship between Sophia and her mother Marga changes suddenly when Marga begins suffering from Alzheimer's disease. Gradually, she reveals secrets from her past, revealing to the daughter an unknown side of the mother.

Sofia decides to travel with Marga to her hometown of Riga, to learn more about the real life of her mother. Here she learns the truth about the history of her family, which sets her own life in a whole new light.

This family epic, directed by Hans Steinbichler won several awards, including "Best Original Score" at the Film Festival Locarno IFF 2011 and the Bavarian Film Prize 2011.

Genre Drama
Places Germany
Year 2010/2011
Director Hans Steinbichler
Screenplay Josephin Thayenthal, Robert Thayenthal
Cast Juliane Köhler, Hannelore Elsner, Karoline Herfurth, Niklas Kohrt, Maria Popistasu, Rüdiger Vogler, David Kross, Matthias Brandt, Juta Vanaga, Dace Eversa
Length 104 minutes
Awards IFF Locarno 2011: Beste Filmmusik,
FBW 2011: Prädikat „wertvoll“,
Bayerischer Filmpreis 2011: Produzentenpreis

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LESSONS OF A DREAM

Director: Sebastian Grobler, color, 113 minutes, Germany 2010/2011

The young teacher Konrad Koch is hired in 1874 by a Prussian high school as one of the first English language teachers in Germany. Since his students at first have no idea how to deal with the foreign language, he resorts to an unusual method: he teaches his students – in English - the new game of "football" (soccer) which he got to know in England. With growing enthusiasm, the students learn soccer and English at the same time, but conservative parents and school authorities are outraged by the ‘uncivilized’ sport. A powerful struggle ensues, and now it's up to the students to defend the new sport and their teacher ...

Sebastian Grobler’s film debut is based on a true story and explores the historical events that led to the introduction of the much-loved game of football in Germany and that gradually made the sport so popular. The film was awarded the title of "highly recommended" by the German Film Review in 2011.

Genre Drama
Places Germany
Year 2010/2011
Director Sebastian Grobler
Screenplay Johanna Stuttmann, Philipp Roth
Cast Daniel Brühl, Burghart Klaußner, Kathrin von Steinburg, Justus von Dohnányi, Axel Prahl, Jürgen Tonkel, Thomas Thieme, Theo Trebs, Adrian Moore, Till Valentin Winter
Length 113 minutes
Awards Bunte 2011: New Faces Award, Best Actor,
FBW 2011: Prädikat „Besonders wertvoll“

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When We Leave

Director: Feo Aladag, color, 123 minutes, Germany 2008-2010

The 25-year-old German-Turkish woman Umay can no longer endure daily life with her brutal husband in Istanbul. Together with her young son Cem she flees to her family in Berlin, where she grew up. But her hope to live a new, independent life is destroyed: her parents and brothers accuse her of dishonoring the family. Umay encounters a wall of hatred and she fears for her life. She again escapes with her child and breaks off all contact with her family. Soon after, she meets the sensitive Stipe, with whom she hopes for a happy new start. When her younger sister Rana marries, Umay sees the opportunity for reconciliation with her family - but for that it is already too late ...

The film debut of Feo Aladag was the German candidate for the Oscar-nominated 2011 as the Best Foreign Language Film and received numerous national and international awards.

Genre Drama
Places Germany
Year 2008 - 2010
Director Feo Aladag
Screenplay Feo Aladag
Cast Sibel Kekilli, Derya Alabora, Blanca Apilanez Fernandez, Tamer Yigit, Florian Lukas, Serhad Can, Almila Bagriacik, Alwara Höfels, Mustafa Jouni, Settar Tanriögen
Length 123 minutes
Awards Among others: German Film Critics Prize 2011: Best Cinematography, Best Actress, Best Debut Feature Film, Best Editing, Best Film, Best Screenplay

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Beats Being Dead

Director: Christian Petzold, color, 88 minutes, Germany 2011

It could have been a relaxing summer for Johannes: while doing his community service in a hospital by the lake, he meets the young Ana and begins a romance with her. One day while Johannes is on duty, a convicted sex offender escapes from the hospital. The police are on full alert searching for the dangerous man, who has disappeared into the woods. Meanwhile, the first problems arise between Johannes and Ana: Ana wants to go to America with him, but he hesitates, and then Johannes former girlfriend shows up. After a big fight at a party Ana runs away, straight into the woods and into deadly danger.

"Beats Being Dead" is the first part of the "Three Lives" (Dreileben) trilogy in which three well-known directors - Christian Petzold, Dominik Graf and Christoph Hochhäusler - tell a crime story from three different perspectives.

Genre Thriller
Places Germany
Year 2011
Director Christian Petzold
Screenplay Part 1 "Beats Being Dead": Christian Petzold
Cast Jacob Matschenz, Luna Mijovic, Vijessna Ferkic, Rainer Bock, Kirsten Block, Stefan Kurt, Konstantin Frolov, Florian Bartholomäi, Jeanette Hain
Length 88 minutes
Awards 2012 Adolf-Grimme-Prize: Fiction,
German Film Prize 2011: Special Achievement Fiction,
Festival of German Films Ludwigshafen 2011: Special Award

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Three Fourths Moon

Director: Christian Zübert, color, 85 minutes, Germany 2010/2011

Hartmut Mackowiaks life falls apart when his wife leaves him after 30 years of marriage. The grumpy taxi driver, unsociable and inaccessible, is suddenly on his own, and is now forced to completely change his life.

And when the six year old Turkish girl Hayat shows up alone in his cab, unable to speak German, and reliant on his help, it just about seems like the last straw. Grudgingly the grumpy man accepts the girl and combines the search for her family with the attempt to win back his own wife. But gradually the bright girl softens Hartmut's heart and his rough exterior begins to crumble ...

Director Christian Zübert received the Bavarian Film Prize 2012 for "Dreiviertelmond" in the category "Best Screenplay".

Genre Tragicomedy
Places Germany (Nürnberg), Franconian Switzerland, Istanbul
Year 2010/2011
Director Christian Zübert
Screenplay Christian Zübert
Cast Elmar Wepper, Mercan-Fatima Türkoglu, Ivan Anderson, Katja Rupé, Marie Leuenberger, Özay Fecht, Bernd Regenauer, Stefan Kügel, Peter Huber, Ercan Karacayli
Lengthe 85 minutes
Awards Bavarian Film Prize 2012: Best Screenplay,
FBW 2011: Prädikat „Besonders wertvoll“

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Summer Window

Director: Hendrik Handloekten, color, 96 minutes, Germany / Finland 2010/2011

Having just fallen in love, the happy couple Juliane and August spend their summer in Finland. But then something strange happens: Juliane suddenly wakes up one morning in cold, wintry Berlin, next to Philip, her ex-boyfriend with whom spent many years together, but recently left for August. Gradually, Juliane realizes that she has been catapulted several months into the past. Was the summer in Finland only a dream? And has fate destined the two for each other or must Juliane fight to meet her true love August again? Excited, but also frightened, Juliane again approaches her future.

Director Hendrik Handloegten presented "Summer Window", his third feature film, at the Hamburg Film Festival 2011. The work was nominated in 2012 in three categories for the German Film Award: "Best Supporting Actress", "Best Cinematography" and "Best Original Score".

Genre Drama / Fantasy
Places Germany, Finland
Year 2010/2011
Director Hendrik Handloegten
Screenplay Hendrik Handloegten
Cast Nina Hoss, Mark Waschke, Lars Eidinger, Fritzi Haberlandt, Lasse Stadelmann, Christoph Bach, Susanne Wolf, Barbara Philipp, Barbara Schnitzler, Ernst Stötzner
Length 96 minutes
Awards Nominations for the German Film Award "Best Supporting Actress," "Best Cinematography", "Best Original Score"

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Men in the City 2

Regie: Simon Verhoeven, farbig, 112 Minuten, Deutschland 2010/2011

Five friends are trying, each in his own way, to find true love. Bruce writes pop songs and dreams of fame and fortune which will bring love, Nicholas is tired of his single life and throws himself into dating, while Philip is about to become a father and is anxiously awaiting the birth of his child. The shy Gunter has a very special relationship problem, and Jerome withdraws to the countryside because he really wants to take a break from love. All are hoping - openly or secretly - to find the love of their lives, and they end up in all sorts of funny, weird and sometimes sad situations. Powerful emotions, and lots of laughs!

The director Simon Verhoeven gathers in his successful sequel „Männerherzen 2“ a number of well-known German actors. The comedy has been awarded the Bavarian Film Award 2011 in the category „Best Film National“ and received the „Bambi Award Film National“ 2011 as well.

Genre Comedy
Places Germany
Year 2010/2011
Director Simon Verhoeven
Screenplay Simon Verhoeven
Cast Florian Fitz, Maxim Mehmet, Til Schweiger, Justus von Dohnányi, Nadja Uhl, Christian Ulmen, Jana Pallaske
Length 112 Minutes
Awards Bambi Award Film National 2011,
Bavarian Film Award 2011

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SASCHA

Director: Dennis Todorovic, color, 102 minutes, Germany 2010

The 18 year old Sasha lives in Cologne with his family who have immigrated from the former Yugoslavia,. The father runs a pub, the mother is doing everything to ensure that their sons be something "better": a famous concert pianist, his brother a successful rower. Sasha is just about to take entrance exams for his musical studies when he discovers that he has fallen in love with his piano teacher Gebhard. He confides in his Chinese friend Jiao, who has her own problems with her strict father and who is also in love with Sasha. Sasha is torn between his desperate realization that he is gay and his love for Gebhard on the one hand, and the panicky fear of his family on the other hand, for whom a gay son would be an unforgivable disgrace. When Sasha fails the entrance examination and everything hidden is exposed, he must confront his father ...

"Sasha" is the feature debut of director Dennis Todorović, born in 1977 in Ellwangen. The concept came from a workshop of the Berlinale Talent Campus. In addition to the coming out of the main character, the cultural conflict of a migrant family in Germany played an important role. The tragi-comic, gay love story, "Sasha" premiered at San Francisco International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival 2010 and was awarded the German Film Prize at the International Film Festival Hof 2010.

Genre Tragi-comedy
Locations Germany
Year 2009/2010
Director Dennis Todorović
Screenplay Dennis Todorović
Cast Sascha Kekez, Tim Bergmann, Predrag Bjelać, Zeljika Preksavec, Lupo-Grujcic Ljubisa, Jasin Mjumjunov, Yvonne Yung Hee Bormann
Length 102 minutes
Awards International Filmtage Hof 2010: German Film Prize,
FBW 2010: awarded "Prädikat Wertvoll"

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The Crocodiles 3 - All for one

Director: Wolfgang Groos, color, 83 minutes, Germany 2010

Sascha (17) is a young fearless and incredibly shrewd woman who lives in „Broken Glass Park“, an incredibly depressing, rough neighborhood in a large German city. Some years ago, she saw her stepfather Vadim E. murdering her own mother. Since then, she seeks revenge. One day she reads a newspaper article which depicts the murderer as reformed and remorseful sinner. The responsible newspaper editor Volker Trebur then gets to feel the full force of her rage. He sincerely regrets and offers his help. Spontaneously, Sascha moves in with him and his son Felix, and comes hurtling into an educated, middle-class milieu. It functions according to entirely different rules than those found in “Broken Glass Park”. Sascha is drawn to Felix as well as to his charismatic father Volker and a gentle love triangle develops. After many complications Sascha finds her own way.

Genre Children’s Film
Location Deutschland
Year 2010
Director Wolfgang Groos
Screenplay Thomas Bahmann, Ralf Hertwig, Christian Ditter
Cast Nick Romeo Reimann, Fabian Halbig, Manuel Steitz, Leonie Tepe, David Hürten, Ella-Maria Gollmer, Javidan Imani, Robin Walter, Jacob Matschenz, Nicolas Schinseck, Axel Stein, Nora Tschirner, Jochen Nickel, Michale Kessler
Length 83 minutes
Awards Munich Film Festival 2011: Children's Media Award, "The White Elephant", Production,
FBW 2011: “besonders wertvoll“

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Winter Daughter

Director: Johannes Schmid, coloured, 90 minutes, Germany / Poland 2010/2011

This delightful road movie features Ursula Werner ("Wolke 9") as a woman who transports two children to Poland in order that one of them can discover more about her father and family. During a phone call at Christmas, the 12-year-old girl Kattaka finds out that her long lost father wants to see her, so her mother entreats her next door neighbour, Lene, to take her there. On the journey they discover a stowaway seeking to escape his circumstances and have an adventure. Thus we have the makings of an unusual road movie which eventually leads to a series of revelations. The other star of the film is the vehicle, a clapped out VW Kombi van. The fine location work adds to the enjoyment.

Genre Road movie
Locations Germany, Poland
Year 2010/2011
Director Johannes Schmid
Screenplay Michaela Hinnenthal, Thomas Schmid
Cast Leon Seidel, Dominik Nowak, Katharina Marie Schubert, Maxim Mehmet, Merab Ninidze, Daniel Olbrychski, Julia Kaminska, Nina Monka, Ursula Werner
Length 90 minutes
Awards Fünf Seen Festival 2011: Young-Generation-Award,
1st Prize Live-Action Feature Film (Chicago 2011),
German Film Award 2012: Gold Film Award, Best Children’s Film

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