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Berlin International Film Festival

16th Third Eye Asian Film Festival: X

16th Third Eye Asian Film Festival: X Besides features and docu-features, the 16th Third Eye Asian Film Festival (TEAFF) had a competitive section for shorts. As many as 25 films competed. Countries represented included India, Iran, Myanmar, Turkey, Tajikistan and South Korea. They were packaged into two screening slots, one of which I managed to attend. Audience Award, Short Film: Taghdir (Fate)/Iran/13 min/Azar Faramarzi Actress, producer and director Azar Faramarzi graduated in Film and ...

Berlin's Asian Embrace

  As has become a pleasant habit here at the Berlinale, Asian cinema is highly prominent in all sections of the Festival. The Berlinale has long been the international launching pad for films and filmmakers from the Far East. The Festival is credited with giving their first international recognition to such celebrated filmmakers as Ang Lee, Zhang Yimou, Kim Ki-Duk, Johnnie To and Chan Wook Park. Ang Lee's debut film PUSHING HANDS premiered in Berlin and Lee eventually went on  to win ...

Film Celebrates Berlinale Birthday

  As part of the sixtieth birthday celebration, the Berlinale is hosting the world premiere of TRACE OF THE BEARS (Spur Der Baren), a German documentary by Berlin-based Zero Film, that traces the history of one of the world's great film events. While other A-list festivals such as Cannes or Venice are artistic, economic and tourist events, the Berlinale is unique for its political dimensions and its highly developed sense of social and world consciousness. The Festival’s history r...

Iraq's Buried Memories

  In a first for the Berlinale, a film from Iraq had its world premiere last evening in the Panorama section. SON OF BABYLON, co-written and directed by Mohamed Al-Daradji, is a stirring drama about coming to terms with tragedy and moving forward despite the burden of personal loss. Filmed in stark poetic set pieces, the film follows the journey of a Kurdish grandmother and her precocious grandson as they travel (mostly on foot) to discover the fate of the boy's father, who has been miss...

Berliinale At 60: A Look Back

  As birthdays go, 60 is not quite as significant as 50 or 75, but it seems that anytime a person or an event reaches a milestone that involves a 0, it is an opportunity for reflection on the past. For its 60th anniversary, the Berlinale  is both looking back and looking forward, with a number of retrospective programs as well as ambitious new ones that will define the Festival for decades to come. First a look backwards....the Festival was established in 1951 as a kind of cold wa...

Jean Renoir Classic At Berlinale

  Like many displaced Europeans during the Nazi occupation of much of Europe, the French filmmaker Jean Renoir spent the war years (and sometime afterwards) in the United States. His sojourn in the hills of Hollywood was not especially a positive one. Like other auteurs, he was appalled by the Hollywood factory system and the condescending attitude towards the director. In France he was a God, in America he was a worker for hire. However, from this brief American period comes one ...

Chinese Film To Open 2010 Berlinale

  The 2010 edition of the Berlin International Film Festival, a film event second in importance only to Cannes, begins on Thursday evening with the International Premiere of a new Chinese film. APART TOGETHER by Tuan Yuan will kick off the festivities at the Berlinale Palast, the showcase cinema in Potsdamer Platz. Chinese cinema has been in the ascendant as the country itself flexes its political and economic muscle. However not all the press has been positive. Last month, the Ch...