Friday, February 15, 2013

Berlin, Hollywood

The Berlin film festival is on - and seeing the news and features about it brings back memories of Berlin, like this moment from the "Pariser Platz" - "Paris square", named after Paris not for romantic reasons, but due to the horse statue which once was captured by the French and brought to Paris, and later re-captured and brought back to Berlin:

And now, the Berlinale. the great thing about it is: even when you are nowhere near Berlin, it sparks film features and interviews - and one of the tv channels is running a film festival in their program, with Berlinale films from previous festival years. And of course, there are a lot of...

Interesting Berlinale links :
  • official Berlinale homepage
  • Berlinale Euronews 3-minute-clip with introduction & trailers: Cinema - Berlinale 2013 
  • Berlinale 2013: Film Fest Spotlights Women and Eastern Europe
  • Wong Kar-wai interview on "The Grandmaster" (the Berlinale opening film)
  • Berlinale article in Berlin newspaper: Vorhang auf! Die Stars, die Filme, die Partys
  • Bullett magazine: 10 most exciting Berlinale films
  • twitterstream: #Berlinale
  • mini-clip 1 from the red carpet: snow & stars
  • mini-clip 2 from the red carpet: naked protest +  more in the Reuters news
  • Berlinale article: A cineaste's dream: "Festival director Dieter Kosslick promises a mix of productions from major studios and independent filmmakers, a large selection of films from and about women and - in the great Berlinale tradition - globally sourced and politically committed works. .. Examples can be found in all sections of the festival, during which 404 films will be screened. A total of 19 productions are in the running for coveted gold and silver bears..."
  • film review from the Hollywood Reporter: "The Act of Killing": "Joshua Oppenheimer’s artful confessional documentary gives fearsome killers the chance to re-enact their crimes as Hollywood gangsters... The result is a fascinating film not just about Indonesia but more generally about the corrosive after-effects of torture, political corruption and genocide. "
  • PirateBay documentary on internet culture and copyright celebrates filmstart at the Berlinale - and online for free. Here's a  Verge-interview with director Simon Klose: "Four years in the Pirate Bay: director Simon Klose on why file-sharing is still political". More about the movie and where / how to watch it online, in the piratebay twitterstream. And below, the official trailer:


Berlin, 90 years ago and still fresh, now in TV
Parallel to the Berlin international film festival, one of the TV channels is broadcasting a series of Berlin films. One of them is the silent film "Berlin. Die Sinfonie der Großstadt" - "Berlin. The Symphony of the Big City." by Walther Ruttman was first shown in cinemas in 1927, the same year that Fritz Lang released his now-classic expressionist film "Metropolis". In contrast to Metropolis, Ruttman's Visual Symphony is documentary, with an impressionist atmosphere, and even now feels modern. Here's a short sequence of the film:


There's a long version of the film up at youtube, too: Berlin. Symphony of a Great City (1927)
And here's a bit more about the film:
"As a "city symphony" film, it portrays the life of a city, mainly through visual impressions in a semi-documentary style, without the narrative content of more mainstream films, though the sequencing of events can imply a kind of loose theme or impression of the city's daily life. These films were conceived of in the mid to late 1920's amongst the "artistic" writers and filmmakers as an avant-garde, "new style" of early filmmaking that evolved from a script-free open narrative form that sought to show a clearer, less cluttered view of the world free from a real storyline or rigid structure." (wiki link)

From Berlin to the language of Hollywood
Watching the Berlin film and other features about the Berlinale made me remember that i saw a note on a lecture-series on film and the language of Hollywood at Coursera, the online lecture website. So i went looking, and the class actually started just last week - and the first week is about the silent films of the 1920ies. So interesting to watch right now. The course includes 5-weeks, with 22 video lectures altogether, and a range of film examples that starts in 1928 and leads to 2002, here's the link: The Language of Hollywood: Storytelling, Sound, and Color

& some related links:
Below, the Berlin image, in full technicolor - it almost looks like a photo trick, with the radio tower in the background, but standing there in front of the Berlin Cathedral (which dates back to 1450), that's exactly the view you see 



Hilde said...

Great photo, the cathedral is beautiful!
I have never been to Berlin, but I would like to go there one day.

Thanks for your visit and comment :)

Dorothee said...

Berlin is an amazing city, especially now that a lot of the huge construction sites are completed - hope you get the chance to visit one day.