Tuesday, May 7. 2013
Continue reading "GOETHE FILMS: Young & Old Shorts" »
Friday, May 3. 2013
Why is director-writer-producer Hans-Christian Schmid represented twice in our series GOETHE FILMS: Young & Old? (I nearly added a third Schmid film, his 1995 IT'S A JUNGLE OUT THERE with 21-year-old debutante Franka Potente.) Apart from the fact that he is one of Germany’s best contemporary filmmakers, a thread is running through his oeuvre. One of familial relations, growing up, leaving home --its security along with its restrictions.
Continue reading "GOETHE FILMS: Hans-Christian Schmid" »
Thursday, May 2. 2013
I am sitting in a hotel room in Germany, watching the (very long) German Film Awards gala. Two acceptance speeches stand out, the shortest and the longest: Both Best Supporting Actor and Actress go to 65+ actors. Michael Gwisdek, who you might remember from GOOD BYE, LENIN!, even wins the award against his son. Christine Schorn, also of GOOD BYE, LENIN! fame, here wins for LIFE IS NOT FOR COWARDS and plays out a little stand-up routine: ”(sighs) So my agent calls and says ‘Christine, I have a job for you, but again … it’s a grandma role.’ – ‘Oh, but I can pull it off, don’t worry!’”, the seasoned theatre and film actress jokes.
TIFF's Piers Handling announced last August that one of TIFF 2012's notable themes was aging --”It seems like the baby boom generation has grown up and is dealing with issues of aging, what it means to age.”-- and for me a motif came into focus that I had felt more than scrutinized for a while, in international (from AMOUR to QUARTET) as well as German films (from the feel good movie BIS ZUM HORIZONT DANN LINKS to the Alzheimer documentary FORGET ME NOT). Continue reading "GOETHE FILMS: And if we all lived together?..." »
Thursday, April 25. 2013
Landing in Osnabrueck can be a culture "shock" for North Americans. A pretty medieval town in the middle of Germany, sadly bombed and sadly reconstructed, it proudly hosts the European Media Arts Festival -- a great example of what I love about the German arts scene: Despite international perception, Berlin is not the be all and end all. The centres of art production, academic research, and presentation are thoroughly decentralised, with not-always-perfect but gutsy places like Oberhausen or Hof sporting major international events and meeting points. Thus for 5 days, you see Asian and European guest artists navigating their way from the alternative backyard theatre to the "Warehouse" along the old fortified town wall of Osnabrueck in amazement or puzzlement or both.
EMAF is as old as Toronto's Images Festival (26), born out of a time when video was already an established art form but going into technological overdrive with the arrival of the internet. DEceleration in an accelerating media age was one of this year's points of discussion, Continue reading "Decelerating EMAF" »
Friday, April 19. 2013
@imagesfestival: Join us Thursday as we unveil our 2013 Catalogue and COMPLETE FESTIVAL LINE-UP!! www.facebook.com/events/147147055450813/ ." Will do!
21 March, program launch:
Looking forward to “spring break“ (in snow storm) from mainstream film fare as @liamlacey so rightly called it: 3 weeks to @imagesfestival
Film fests take note: @imagesfestival's Scott Miller-Berry rightly describes approach as non-competitive, egalitarian and "fair trade". @imagesfestival AD Kate MacKay promises more interiors than at last year's landscape-heavy media arts fest (& again many #Filipino #films).
Monday, April 15. 2013
When I saw THE MACHINE WHICH MAKES EVERYTHING DISAPPEAR for the first time at the International Documentary Film Festival (IDFA) Amsterdam last year, I was impressed. The documentary clearly demonstrates what filmmaking is all about: telling strong stories you won't forget. The debut by Tinatin Gurchiani takes us on a special journey through her home country of Georgia. She presents us with stories and images of its past and present that will stay with you long after the film has ended.
Continue reading "The Machine which makes everything disappear" »
Friday, April 5. 2013
Dr. Stephan Wackwitz, who runs the Goethe-Institut Georgia, describes the roundabout way THE MACHINE WHICH MAKES EVERYTHING DISAPPEAR --our co-presentation with Hot Docs this year-- came into being:
“Like most artistic achievements, THE MACHINE WHICH MAKES EVERYTHING DISAPPEAR is a misunderstanding that came to something... Continue reading "Hot Docs 2013, from Tbilissi and Shanghai with..." »
Wednesday, April 3. 2013
Continue reading "German children's films conquer Canada" »
Tuesday, April 2. 2013
It is an irony of history that the German Jews and the German Nazis in Argentina favoured similar places to live, had similar tastes in architecture, and chose similar places to holiday. Much of the narrative in the film is based on real events. Continue reading "Director Jeanine Meerapfel on My German Friend" »
Wednesday, March 27. 2013
The Toronto Jewish Film Festival and the Goethe-Institut Toronto are co-presenting the Canadian premiere of
Jeanine Meerapfel: MY GERMAN FRIEND
April 21, 2013, 3pm
ROM Signy and Cléopheé Eaton Theatre, 100 Queen’s Park, Toronto, ON
Watch the (German) trailer here.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to win 1 of 2 pairs of tickets to our only screening in Canada. (Only the 2 winners will be contacted.)
Next week: The director's comments on her film, inspired by her own life and family history.
by Jutta Brendemühl, Goethe-Institut Toronto
Tuesday, March 19. 2013
For starters, 3x Wenders: About to launch, his portrait of Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgad called SHADE AND LIGHT. Announced for next year, CATHEDRALS OF CULTURE, a documentary TV series in 3D and 2D about the soul of buildings, by a team of six award-winning filmmakers including Wim Wenders and produced by his Neue Road Movies. “If buildings could talk, what would they tell about us?” is the guiding question that clearly harks back to Wenders’ 3D video installation for the Venice Architecture Biennale 2010 of the same name.
And of course, in Canada, we are eagerly awaiting news on Wim’s next (3D) feature EVERYTHING WILL BE FINE with Sarah Polley, still in pre-production.
Monday, March 11. 2013
Laundry. Waiting. Movement. Music.These were some of the themes that came up during our two-night presentation of the best German and international shorts and the Q&A with filmmakers Oliver Husain, Jasmine Ellis, Phillip Barker and Chris Kennedy in our “Oberhausen on Tour” program at the TIFF Bell Lightbox. Continue reading "A short film about ..." »
Friday, March 8. 2013
Wonder why the short films we are about to show you in our next GOETHE FILMS program are so fantastic? Read the Oberhausen Film Festival jury statements to find out.
Winner of the Grand Prize of the City of Oberhausen 2012:
SNOW TAPES by Mich’ael Zupraner
Israel/Palestinian Territories 2011
In this work, with a strong sense of political urgency and complexity, the artist provided a camera to a Palestinian family in the highly charged city of Hebron. But instead of a one dimensional depiction of a political conflict, he complicates the viewer's life with a bifurcated screen in which we are confronted not only with the violent reality of the occupation, but also with the glee of the victim when he is able to be aggressive, with the ambivalence of throwing snow balls as both playful and violent, and with the Israeli director himself as someone who stand to gain from representing Palestinian suffering. The result, while raw and rough, is both subtle and evocative, and reconfigures cinema as an active agent beyond the subjective-objective division rather than settle for a passive political role.
Mich’ael Zupraner talks about the making-of SNOW TAPES.
Excerpts from SNOW TAPES.
Thursday, March 7. 2013
"I am looking forward to introducing this selection from the German competition of the Oberhausen Festival 2012. Although it is the German competition, the program includes two films by directors from Toronto: “Plan B” by Jasmine Ellis, and my film “Item Number”. And we’ll both be in attendance.
Monday, March 4. 2013
Our second night of the Best of the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen takes a documentary and experimental look at human (and animal) behaviour and includes the winner of the Grand Prize of the City of Oberhausen 2012, "Snow Tapes":