All posts by ruxi

Writers’ Challenge: WINNER

No idea what film to watch as you are patiently counting down the minutes until our TEDDY Films 2021 will be screened in summer? That’s where our Writers’ Challenge 2021 winner comes in!

Krzysztof Dubicki writes about his favourite queer film AND THEN WE DANCED (2019), directed by Levan Akin.

“Cinema knows a lot of love stories with the art of dance as a beautiful background to the core of the human connection, passion and excitement. Where there are devotion and dedication there are emotions and feelings. Some of them – like love – can take us to the sky and some of them – like a heartache – can make us melancholic and full of grief.

Levan Akin tells a moving story of Merab and Irakli, two Georgian male dancers from the Georgian dance school and their passionate way to discover their feelings for each other. As a background to the love elation, the director shows us amazing images of Tbilisi, the country’s culture and family’s connection and respect for the country and the traditional Georgian dance, that makes this film so unique and graceful, but also really masculine and strong. Scenes, where this dance is being performed, are just a delight. Especially that they are spiced with the amazing sound of Georgian music, that takes a spectator to the journey inside the tradition and folklore.

Merab (played by amazingly good Levan Gelbakhiani) is intensively training with his girlfriend wannabe, Mary to get into the National Georgian Ensemble, being focused on his future and achieving perfection. His steady mindset is being interrupted by the arrival of Irakli (in this role a very charismatic and handsome Bachi Valishvili), who becomes not only his rival during the dance classes but also an object of Merab’s affection and distraction. The mix of sensuality and masculine energy of the dance brings boys together as they are both starting to discover the lust towards each other. Conservative climate of the country and approach towards LGBT communities in Georgia creates a lot of hate towards gay people. It pushes them, to hide their true identities and live their life the way they are expected to. Merab’s love for Irakli (which feels like his first-ever true love) helps him realize who he truly is. The intensity of feelings towards someone, who has become his secret lover brings a lot of excitement but also confusion and drama, that affect this young boy’s broken heart.

This film is a great and successful (24 awards and 21 nominations worldwide) representation of Queer cinema. Yes, it does have a bittersweet ending and for some, it might be a cliché of another dramatic and sad gay story, but these kinds of stories actually happen. Especially for the younger generation of people trying to find their true self in the world that is not accepting them. Akin’s world is full of cheerful and ‘Coming of Age’ moments, that works perfectly in this movie. With the mix of folk and pop soundtrack vibes and great acting full of chemistry and honesty, this piece is an extraordinary work from the hands of a true artist. Just like the dance, which is so easy to lose yourself, it is equally easy to get lost in the charm and magic of this irresistible story.” 

Congratulations to our winner Krzysztof for his wonderful film review!

Now you know which film to watch next. Check out the trailer below and see for yourselves…

TEDDY TODAY: Saturday the 29th of February 2020

All good things come to an end and unfortunately, the 70th Edition of the Berlinale is slowly approaching its ending for this year.

Despite having already presented all the films, there are still a few Re-Screenings left for you to enjoy:

Re-Screenings:

  1. Babylebbe – Cubix 8 – 11:00
  2. Panteres – Cubix 8 – 11:00
  3. Always Amber – Zoo Palast 1 – 12:30
  4. Rizi – Haus der Berliner Festspiele – 13:15
  5. Petite Fille – International – 13:30
  6. Who Can Predict What Will Move You – Cubix 8 – 14:30
  7. Meu Nome É Bagdá – Zoo Palast 1 – 15:30
  8. Genius Loci – Colosseum 1 – 17:00
  9. Alice Júnior – Cubix 8 – 19:00
  10. La Casa Dell’Amore – CinemaxX 4 – 19:00
  11. Automotive – International – 19:30
  12. Futur Drei – Zoo Palast 2 – 19:30
  13. Bushido Zankoku Monogatari – Cubix 6 – 20:30
  14. Suk Suk -CinemaxX 7 – 21:00
  15. Charlatan – Haus der Berliner Festspiele – 21:00
  16. Rizi – Friedrichstadt-Palast – 21:30
  17. Welcome To Chechnya – Cubix 9 – 21:30
  18. Minyan – Cubix 7 – 22:00
  19. Vento Seco – Colosseum 1 – 22:00

TEDDY TODAY: Friday the 28th of February 2020

Worried that you’ve missed some of the films? Have you watched one that you truly enjoyed and wish to see it again?

We’ve prepared here another list of almost 20 films that you can re-watch (for the first, second or tenth time). Don’t forget to bring a friend! :)

Re-Screenings:

  1. Vento Seco – CinemaxX 7 – 09:00
  2. Charlatan – Haus der Berliner Festspiele – 09:30
  3. El Nombre Del Hijo – Urania – 10:00
  4. Panteres – Filmtheater am Friedrichshain – 10:00
  5. Rizi – Friedrichstadt-Palast – 10:00
  6. Always Amber – Cubix 7 – 10:00
  7. Babylebbe – Filmtheater am Friedrichshain – 10:00
  8. Las Mil Y Una – CinemaxX 6 – 11:15
  9. Charlatan – Friedrichstadt-Palast – 13:00
  10. Suk Suk – Cubix 7 – 13:15
  11. Who Can Predict What Will Move You – Filmtheater am Friedrichshain – 13:30
  12. Alice Júnior – CinemaxX 3 – 13:30
  13. Welcome to Chechnya – Colosseum 1 – 14:30
  14. Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets – CinemaxX 4 – 16:00
  15. Minyan – Zoo Palast 2 – 16:15
  16. Hama’azin – Zoo Palast 3 – 16:30
  17. Inflorescence – Zoo Palast 3 – 16:30
  18. Genius Loci – Cubix 9 – 21:30
  19. Die Letzte Stadt – International – 22:00

TEDDY TODAY: Sunday the 1st of March

Here we are now.. at the end of our ten-day journey. We hope you feel more enriched than before and that you discovered some amazing films that you will further recommend. To all of you film lovers or people who are just discovering the wonders of the cinematic universe, here are some last screenings for today.

Take advantage of this while it still lasts!

TEDDY TODAY: Wednesday the 26th of February 2020

We hope everyone is just as excited about these new films as we are! Days are getting fuller and busier at the 70th Berlinale and we want to make sure you don’t miss out on anything and are able to find information easily.

Here you can discover today’s selection of films. As usual, the re-screenings can be found at the bottom of the page.

Don’t forget to keep an eye on our social media channels to keep yourself up to date with our events, interviews and so much more!

BERLIN ALEXANDERPLATZ
Berlinale Palast – 15:30

Sommerhaus Filmproduktion; Produzenten: J. Laube, M. Jungfleisch; Regie: Burhan Qurbani; Kamera: Yoshi Heimrath

Directed by: Burhan Qurbani
Short Description: Francis has survived his escape from North Africa. When he wakes up on a beach in the south of Europe, he is determined to live a regular, decent life from now on. But he winds up in present-day Berlin where a stateless person without a work permit is treated just as mercilessly as the labourer Franz Biberkopf in Döblin’s classic novel of German modernism. Francis initially resists an offer to deal drugs in Hasenheide park, but then comes under the influence of Reinhold, his neurotic, sex-addicted pal who takes him in. When Francis meets club owner Eva and, after several dramatic experiences, the escort girl Mieze, he feels he’s found something for the first time, something he’s never known before: a little bit of happiness.

WELCOME TO CHECHNYA
International – 16:30

Directed by: David France
Short Description: In 2017, the LGBTQI* community, human rights defenders and allies all over the world were shocked by the devastating news of crimes being committed in the Russian republic of Chechnya. In a coordinated action, the authorities were rounding up gay and bisexual men and women, and taking them to illegal prison facilities where they were tortured and forced to out others, with the result that they were either executed or released to their families where they were often subjected to “honour killings”.

GENIUS LOCI
CinemaxX 3 – 16:30

Directed by: Adrien Mérigeau
Short Description: There is chaos everywhere: in her head and outside, in the big city. Things are taking on a life of their own. Young Reine is on the search, but she does not know what she is looking for. In delicate drawings and fluid animations, we see the world through her eyes and her perception becomes tangible.

DIE LETZTE STADT
CinemaxX 7 – 18:00

Die Letzte Stadt © Heinz Emigholz & Filmgalerie 451

Directed by: Heinz Emigholz
Short Description: An archaeologist and a weapons designer, who knew each other in a previous life as a filmmaker and a psychoanalyst, meet at an excavation site in the Negev desert and begin a conversation about love and war. A series of encounters with alternating actors in different roles ensues, which leads the viewer through the cities of Athens, Berlin, Hong Kong and São Paulo.

VENTO SECO
ZOO Palast 1 – 18:30

Directed by: Daniel Nolasco
Short Description: Sandro’s life is somewhat monotonous. He works in a fertiliser factory, goes swimming and spends his evenings doing jigsaw puzzles of landscapes. Sandro has a purely sexual relationship with his colleague Ricardo. He always seems to be a bit of an outsider, not comfortable in his own skin, not really belonging. When Maicon, a
man straight out of a Tom-of-Finland illustration, shows up in their small town and flirts with Ricardo, Sandro’s burgeoning feelings of jealousy set a change in motion.

SEX
ZOO Palast 2 – 19:00

Sex © Profile Pictures

Directed by: Amalie Næsby Fick
Short Description: One kiss on the roof on a warm night in Copenhagen and Cathrine, in her early twenties, can no longer keep a grip on her life. On the one hand, there’s her colleague Selma, from whom she wants more after that first kiss. On the other, there’s her boyfriend Simon. For him, what little they have is actually plenty, and for some time now, even less has been enough for Simon in bed. For Cathrine, who works at a call centre giving tips on sex and love, it’s definitely not enough, and after Selma’s kiss she doesn’t know what to do. Torn between regret and desire, she drags everyone who loves her and who she loves into her chaos.

THE LONG GOOD FRIDAY
CinemaxX 8 – 19:30

Directed by: John Mackenzie
Short Description: Cockney gang boss Harold Shand wants to go legit and make London the “capital of Europe” by building an Olympic stadium in the Docklands. He is hoping to persuade the New York mafia to invest in the venture. But no sooner have its representatives arrived before Harold runs into problems. Two members of his gang have been murdered and he himself is almost killed by a bomb. To save face with the Americans, he needs to find the culprits right away – and he’s not squeamish about how he does it..

NICHT DER HOMOSEXUELLE IST PERVERS, SONDERN DIE SITUATION, IN DER ER LEBT
Akademie der Künste – 20:00

Nicht-der-Homosexuelle-ist-pervers-sondern-die-Situation-in-der-er-lebt @ Bernd Feuerhelm(vorne)
Foto: Bernd Feuerhelm(vorne)

Directed by: Rosa von Praunheim
Short Description: In the commentary, the word “gay” is uttered 90 times, which was still being used in the context of hate speech in 1971, two years after the abolition of Section 175 of the German criminal code, which criminalized homosexual acts between males. Delivered in a declamatory tone in voiceover to silent images showing clichéd gay scenes, the commentary provoked those unwilling to hear anything about it and those who were suffering from the use of the term in equal measure. It is a rare example of a film that has had a direct socio-political impact.

SUK SUK
CinemaxX 7 – 21:00

Directed by: Ray Yeung
Short Description: With practised movements, Hong Kong taxi driver Pak gets ready, polishes the traditional bright red paint of his car to a high shine and picks up his granddaughter from school. In search of anonymous sex, he meets Hoi, who is retired, divorced and also a grandfather. After a first fleeting encounter, they begin to spend time together more often. But just one late-night text message threatens to throw their everyday lives off-balance.