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Revanche wins Berlin Europa Cinemas Label

Austrian director Götz Spielmann’s REVANCHE has won the Europa Cinemas Label as Best European film in the Berlin Film Festival’s Panorama section, it was announced today by the jury of four Europa Cinemas exhibitors. The Label will be awarded this evening.

This marks the fourth year that the Europa Cinemas Label has been awarded at Berlin, and complements the Labels awarded at the Giornate degli Autori section in Venice, the Quinzaine des Réalisateurs in Cannes and Karlovy Vary.

REVANCHE will now receive the invaluable support of extended theatrical exposure and additional promotion from the Europa Cinemas network.

The Europa Cinemas Label in Berlin consisted of: Robert Kenny (Operations Manager, Curzon Cinemas/UK); Marko Röhr (Exhibitor, Bio Rex Helsinki, Bio Rex Kajaani/Finland); Wolfgang Steininger (Exhibitor, Moviemento and City Kino, Linz/Austria) and Barbara Suhren (Exhibitor, Kino am Oranienplatz, Berlin/Germany).

The Jury issued the following statement about the film, “This is a very well made and dramatic film that we believe has the potential to grip audiences around Europe. The story is absorbing, the characters well drawn and the performances uniformly strong. This is true European cinema at its best – an authentic and uncompromised view of a corner of Europe.”

Sold internationally by The Match Factory, REVANCHE stars Johannes Krisch, Irina Potapenko, Andreas Lust, Ursula Strauss, Hannes Thanheiser and Hanno Pöschl. Written and directed by Götz Spielmann, the film is produced by Matthias Forberg, Heinz Stussak, Sandra Bohle and Götz Spielmann. The production company is Prisma Film und Fernsehproduktion, co-produced with Spielmannfilm.

A story about guilt and revenge set against the backdrop of Vienna’s demi-monde and rural Austria. Alex is a driver and henchman for brothel owner Konecny. He is having a secret affair with one of the girls working at the brothel – Tamara from the Ukraine. Their love for each other is not the only bond – they are both determined to escape their current wretched situation. The time for their escape dawns when Konecny allows one his underworld buddies to brutally mistreat Tamara. In order to find the money they need, Alex decides to rob a bank in a small country town. He knows the region well. But Tamara senses danger and is vehemently against his plan. Only when Alex assures her that his gun is not loaded and that she can wait for him in the car, does she agree.
Having cased the bank in advance, the raid itself is a pushover – just as Alex expected. But when he approaches the car he sees Tamara talking to a policeman named Robert. Alex pulls out his gun and forces Robert to the ground. Tamara and Alex drive off. Robert fires at them as they move away, hitting Tamara. She dies. Alex’s whole world collapses. Leaving Tamara’s body in a clearing in the forest, a forlorn Alex sets off alone. One thing he doesn’t leave behind is his desperation and his hatred of the man responsible for Tamara’s death. Alex finds refuge with his grandfather, who runs a dilapidated farm on the edge of the forest. Robert the policeman lives nearby. Then Alex meets Susanne – the policeman’s wife.

Founded in 1992, the Europa Cinemas network now consists of a remarkable 1703 screens in 686 cinemas in 393 cities in 44 countries. Europa Cinemas’ aim is to support the programming and visibility of European films outside their country of origin, and to foster initiatives aimed at encouraging younger audiences to develop their interest in European films and cultural diversity.

Previous winners of the Europa Cinemas Label are:

Cannes/Directors’ Fortnight
2003: The Mother (Roger Michell, UK)
Kitchen Stories (Bent Hamer, Norway/Sweden)
2004: In the Battlefields (Danielle Arbid, France/Belgium/Lebanon)
2005: La Moustache (Emmanuel Carrère, France)
2006 : 12 :08 East of Bucharest/A Fost sau n-a fost ? (Corneliu Porumboiu, Rumania)
2007: Control (Anton Corbijn, UK)


Berlin/Panorama
2005: Live and Become (Radu Mihaileanu, France/Belgium/Israel)
Crustacés et Coquillages (Olivier Ducastel, Jacques Martineau, France)
2006 : Tough Enough/Knallhart (Detlev Buck, Germany)
2007: El Camino de los Ingleses/Summer Rain (Antonio Banderas, Spain)

Venice/Venice Days
2004: Darwin’s Nightmare (Hubert Sauper, Austria/France/Belgium)
2005: Le Petit Lieutenant (Xavier Beauvois, France)
2006: Azul Oscuro Casi Negro /Dark Blue Almost Black (Daniel Sánchez Arévalo, Spain)
2007: Tricks/Sztuczki (Andrzej Jakimowski, Poland)

Karlovy Vary (Main Competition and East of the West section)
2006: Frozen City (Aku Louhimies, Finland)
2007: The Class (Ilmar Raag, Estonia)

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