Sommerkino at the Goethe-Institut

The teaser image shows a photo from the film Gundermann, with the protagonist Gerhard Gundermann standing on stage with a guitar, laughing happily into the audience. In the background, stage fog blurs with yellow lights. On the left side of the banner is the text SOMMERKINO at the Goethe-Institut Zypern and the dates (11-15 July 2022) © Peter Hartwig / Pandora Film

Films for all ages

For the third consecutive year the Goethe-Institut Cyprus presents its Sommerkino. This year four films by Andreas Dresen, one of which is a children's film, as well as a youth film by Fatih Akin will be shown. The films of both German directors address a spectrum of different topics that often deal with marginalized social groups. Dresen is also known not to shy away from subjects that other filmmakers consider taboo.

Andreas Dresen, born 1963 in Gera, is one of the most renowned contemporary German filmmakers. The director and screenwriter, who has won numerous national and international awards, takes his typically unconventional perspectives to explore his characters, some of whom have links to the history of the GDR. With great sensitivity towards his characters as well as seemingly banal everyday stories, Dresen manages to paint a picture of the emotional-social situation of the Republic.

His latest film Rabye Rabye Kurnaz against George W. Bush, which premiered at the 73rd Berlinale, has also been widely praised and nominated. This film will be shown as part of the Berlinale Selection by the Goethe-Institut Cyprus in early 2023.

© Goethe-Institut

Fatih Akin, born 1973 in Hamburg, has established himself firmly in the German directing and film scene with films such as Soul Kitchen, Head On (Gegen die Wand) and In the Fade (Aus dem Nichts) and has been awarded numerous prizes for his work.

It has become impossible to imagine the German cinema and arthouse scene without both Dresen's and Akin's work.

The Sommerkino starts with Goodbye Berlin (Tschick), Akin's award-winning adaptation of the novel Why We Took the Car (Tschick). The cinematic adaptation of Wolfgang Herrndorf's highly celebrated novel tells the story of two teenage misfits from Berlin (played by Tristan Göbel and Anand Batbileg) who set off across eastern Germany towards Wallachia in a stolen car at the beginning of their summer vacation. Akin spontaneously stepped in as director for the coming-of-age story seven weeks before the start of shooting. Goodbye Berlin is the first screenplay since 2002 that he has not authored himself. A melancholically cheerful odyssey spreading a youthful, fresh lifestyle.

Grill Point (Halbe Treppe) was Andreas Dresen's second contribution to the Berlinale. In this drama, two married couples (played by Axel Prahl, Thorsten Merten, Gabriela Maria Schmeide and Steffi Kühnert) struggle with their professional and family lives while trying to stay financially afloat. The group of friends leads an unexciting yet exhausting existence. However, a love affair shatters the routine for all involved. The cinematic adventure invites us to rethink marriage and friendship. A realistic, improvised description of everyday life, without a fixed script, which balances everyday drama and exquisite comedy with sensitivity.

With Cloud 9 (Wolke 9), Dresen is one of the few directors who dares to cinematically depict and include the lifeworld of older adults. Inge (played by Ursula Werner) has been happily married to her husband (Horst Rehberg) for 30 years. But then she meets 76-year-old Karl (Horst Westphal) and ends up sleeping with him. Praised by critics, this film is staged as a kind of minimalist chamber play and deals in part with the lust and love of the late years with great precision. With this unusual theme, Dresen creates a serious film in which humour is not neglected. Cloud 9 was created entirely without a script through true-to-life improvisation and often lives from the spontaneous and unveiled authenticity of the actors and actresses.

In the much praised and awarded Gundermann, Dresen devotes himself to the life and oeuvre of rock poet and excavator driver Gerhard Gundermann (played by Alexander Scheer). Gundermann became the idol of many people in the German Democratic Republic (GDR) in the eighties. His success even outlasted the fall of the Wall. Until the rumour started to spread: Was he a spy for the Stasi? The biographical film provides suspenseful insights into the GDR ideology and places the music in the foreground: Dresen and Scheer founded a band especially for the film, which originally performed Gundermann songs at the film premieres, but later also in other contexts.

The last film of our Sommerkino is the childrens' film The Legend of Timm Thaler or The Boy who sold his Laughter, based on the novel by James Krüss. Here, Dresen turns to the children's tale about the boy with the irresistible laugh who, in a life crisis, first sells his gift to the sinister Baron de Lefouet and later tries to recapture it with the support of his friends. With a top-class cast from the German film scene, with a lot of fun, suspense, charm, fascination - and for older viewers even an emotional echo from the past, Dresen's Timm Thaler is the perfect cinema experience for the entire family.