PORTLAND GERMAN FILM FESTIVAL – Monthly Film Series

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In our Monthly Film Series, we will show a variety of GERMAN or GERMAN language films from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. On the 2nd Wednesday of each month, audiences will now have a chance to see these films on a regular basis at the CLINTON STREET THEATER. (Children movies will be playing on Sunday afternoons – please check our website.) All films are with English subtitles.

Showtimes

Wednesday, Feb 12
7:00pm

About the director:

Christian Schwochow studied at the Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg. He garnered attention in 2008 with his debut feature film, NOVEMBER CHILD. His two-part TV film THE TOWER (2012) won the prestigious Grimme Award. His second feature film, CRACKS IN THE SHELL (2011), received several accolades, including the German Film Award for Best Supporting Actress. His feature WEST (2013), also won the German Film Award, this time for Best Actress. He then made his debut as a theater director with POISON at the Deutsches Theater in Berlin. The production was awarded with the German Theater Prize for Best Actress. His other films include: BORNHOLMER STRASSE (2014, TV), NSU GERMAN HISTORY X (2016, TV mini-series), PAULA (2016), and the 6-part series BAD BANKS (2018).

Media: 
west movie poster
Westen (West)
Director: 
Christian Schwochow
Country: 
Germany
Year: 
2013
Runtime: 
102 minutes

Two suitcases, a schoolbag, a cuddly toy – that’s all Nelly Senff and her son Alexej take with them to start their new life in the West. A Volkswagen stops in front of their house in East Berlin. A West German takes them over the border. Nelly pretends to marry him. She is nervous. It’s summer, late 70s – three years after Wassilij’s death. Nelly’s boyfriend died in a car accident. Since Alexej’s father is dead, Nelly wants to leave, too. Away from the GDR, to leave the memories and the grief behind. To get a fresh start.

That should be possible on the other side of the Wall, or so Nelly believes. When she leaves, when she gets into that car, she wears a floral dress. But over there, in the West, she doesn’t know anybody. The first place of refuge for emigrants, the cramped Emergency Refugee Center in West Berlin, is her only shelter. And the place, where her past is catching up with her: The Allied secret services demand information on Wassilij. Allegedly he was a spy. Nelly has to decide if she lets the trauma of the past destroy the future she had in mind for her and her son.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Purchase In Advance.

Showtimes

Wednesday, Mar 11
7:00pm
Gordian Maugg

Cast: Heino Ferch, Samuel Finzi, Lisa Friederich, Johanna Gastdorf

Born in Vienna, Fritz Lang (1890-1976) became one of Germany’s and Hollywood’s most famous directors. This fictional documentary, directed by Gordian Maugg, shows how Lang’s first sound film, “M”, starring Peter Lorre, came to be. It also presents a biographical story of Lang that is gripping but speculative.

Produced solely in black and white as an ingenious mosaic of documentary fragments, live scenes, and scenes from the movie “M”, Maugg’s film is a first class psychological thriller.

Fritz Lang Films include: Metropolis, Destiny, Dr. Mabuse, Die Nibelungen, M, You only live once, Scrarlet Street, and many more

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fritz lang movie poster
FRITZ LANG (Fritz Lang)
Director: 
Gordian Maugg
Country: 
Germany
Year: 
2016
Runtime: 
110 minutes

Lang’s movie “M” deals with a serial murderer, Peter Kürten, who terrorized the city of Düsseldorf in 1930. Lang (very convincingly played by Heino Ferch) travels to Düsseldorf to investigate the story as material for a future film and becomes deeply involved in the personal history of the killer. This part of Lang’s biography is well-documented, based on protocols of interviews that the investigating police and he conducted with Kürten (Samuel Finzi). The interviews reveal the workings of the mind of a psychopath who suffered serious abuse as a child, causing him to lose all capacity for empathy. At the time the movie “M” appeared, this interpretation was revolutionary since it intimated that the killer was not completely responsible for his behavior and therefore deserving of some sympathy.

Maugg’s fictional documentary suggests that Lang’s involvement with the killer raised specters of his own past, his own abuse by his father, his brutal experiences in World War I, in which he too participated in killings, and the possibility that he killed his first wife, Elisabeth Rosenthal. In actuality, Lisa, as she was called, was found shot dead by a bullet from Lang’s revolver, although it was never determined whether her death was caused by suicide or murder. Maugg pleads the case for murder by depicting Lang as unusually brutal in a scene with a prostitute at the beginning of the film and as potentially violent in connection with drug abuse.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Purchase In Advance.

Showtimes

Wednesday, Apr 8
7:00pm
Hans Block and Maritz Riesewieck

About the directors:

Hans Block was born in 1985 in Berlin. Initially a music student, he then studied direction at the Ernst Busch Academy of Dramatic Arts and subsequently did directorial work at the BOX studio of the Frankfurt Schauspiel theater. In 2015, his audio drama “Don Don Don Quijote – Attackéee” was awarded the Prix Marulic. His first feature-length documentary, THE CLEANERS, co-directed with Moritz Riesewieck, premiered in 2018 at the Sundance Film Festival.

Moritz Riesewieck was born in 1985, grew up in the Ruhr, and studied at the Ernst Busch Academy of Dramatic Arts (Berlin). Directorial internships followed at the Volksbühne (Berlin), the Thalia Theater (Hamburg), and the Schaubühne (Berlin). In 2014, at the invitation of the Goethe Institute, he staged Georg Büchner’s “Woyzeck” in Mexico City. In 2015, his innovative works won him the Ela Neumann Scholarship. His first feature-length documentary, THE CLEANERS, co-directed with Hans Block, premiered in 2018 at the Sundance Film Festival. Riesewieck’s book of essays, “Digital Dirty Work”, was published in conjunction with the film’s release.

Media: 
the cleaners movie poster
The Cleaners (Im Schatten der Netzwelt)
Director: 
Hans Block, Moritz Riesewieck
Country: 
Germany | Brazil | Netherlands | Italy | USA | Japan | UK | Sweden | Austria | Switzerland | Denmark | Canada
Year: 
2018
Runtime: 
98 minutes

When you post something on the web, can you be sure it stays there? Enter a hidden shadow industry of digital cleaning, where the Internet rids itself of what it doesn’t like. Who is controlling what we see… and what we think?

The big Internet companies, not all which can properly be described “social media”, are drowning in the unending flood of online content. From hate mail to pornography, from depictions of child abuse to manipulated war pictures used for propaganda, the necessity for preventive action is growing – if only to avoid damaging one’s own public image. As a rule, however, this task is not normally performed by the corporations themselves: “outsourcing” is the cheapest solution as well as the most comfortable – and the contracted companies are also responsible for any corresponding mistakes. The result is that in Manila, for example, an untold number of poorly trained and quickly psychologically-impacted “moderators” sit long hours in front of their computer screens and, in accordance to highly schematic and American criteria, use the delete key to wage war against objectionable content on the Internet. The documentary focus of THE CLEANERS is primarily on the work they do, but also looks at the related debate in the USA.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Purchase In Advance.

Showtimes

Wednesday, May 13
7:00pm
Emily Atef

Cast: Marie Bäumer, Birgit Minichmayr, Charly Hübner, Robert Gwisdek

Awards:

Best Feature Film (Gold), Best Director, Best Lead Actress, Best Supporting Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Cinematography, Best Original Soundtrack

Nominations for:

Best Sound Design, Best Make-Up Artist

Media: 
3 days in Quiberon movie poster
3 days in Quiberon (3 Tage in Quiberon)
Director: 
Emily Atef
Country: 
Germany | Austria | France
Year: 
2018
Runtime: 
115 minutes

1981, Quiberon, a small village on the coast of Brittany. Hilde arrives to visit her old friend, who has retreated to a spa hotel to escape the daily pressures of her life. Her friend is world-famous star Romy Schneider, but together they come across as two ordinary women who are simply happy to be reunited. Shortly afterwards, the young journalist Michael Jürgs and Romy’s long-time acquaintance, photographer Robert Lebeck, arrive to conduct an interview for a large German publication. A cat-and-mouse game immediately ensues between the fragile diva and the ambitious author. The two embark on an emotional rollercoaster ride that fluctuates between tenderness and mutual manipulation. At the same time, Hilde tries to protect her friend from the journalists’ attempts to capture for their audience the innermost feelings of this fascinating woman. All this keeps these four people deeply engaged for three days and nights.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Purchase In Advance.

Showtimes

Wednesday, Jun 10
7:00pm
Rosa von Praunheim

Cast: Matthias Luckey, Tobias Schormann, Thomas Linz, Sybille Enders, Willi Seibt, Sarina Radomski

About the director:

Rosa von Praunheim was born Holger Mischwitzky in 1942 in Riga, Latvia. He was raised in the GDR just outside of Berlin up until 1953, when he fled with his parents. After a few detours, the family settled in Frankfurt am Main in the district of Praunheim, where Mischwitzky attended a humanistic high school. Leaving school early, he then studied painting at the Offenbacher Werkkunstschule (today: Offenbach University of Art and Design [HfG]). After a year, he transferred to the Berlin University of the Arts. He ended his studies without graduating. At that time, the mid-1960s, he also adopted his artist name, Rosa von Praunheim, which he sees as a reference to the Frankfurt district of Praunheim, where he lived as a child, and the “Rosa Winkle” (“pink triangle”), the symbol used to by the Third Reich to identify homosexuals in the concentration camps.

To date, Rosa von Praunheim has directed over 70 films. More than 20 of them premiered at the Berlinale, making him the record holder. In addition to making films, since the 1960s Rosa von Praunheim has also been active as an author and has published books such as Sex und Karriere [Sex and Career], Armee der Liebenden oder Aufstand der Perversen [Army of Lovers, or Revolt of the Perverts], and Ein Penis stirbt immer zuletzt [A Penis Is Always the Last to Die]). From 2000 to 2006, he taught film direction at the Academy for Film and Television in Potsdam, and in 2009 he became a member of the Berlin Academy of Arts, section Film and Media Art; from 2015 to 2018, he was even the director of that section. In 2015, he added the German Federal Cross of Merit to his long list of awards.

Media: 
friendship of men movie poster
Friendship of Men (Männerfreundschaften)
Director: 
Rosa von Praunheim
Country: 
Germany
Year: 
2018
Runtime: 
85 minutes

What else beyond their shared affinity for literature may have bonded the two princes of poetry, Goethe and Schiller, who now look down upon their admirers in silent grandeur in front of the Deutsches Nationaltheater Weimar [Weimar National Theatre]?

In this cocky and insouciantly associative work, Rosa von Praunheim pursues then-contemporary pen pals like Wilhelm and Alexander von Humboldt, Kleist and Winckelmann to sketch out feverish correspondences, fabulate intimacies in sequences with actors, and savour historical speculation in interviews with experts.

Above all, Goethe’s erotic experiences on his famous journey to Italy play a particularly central role. In accordance to the director’s lusty thesis, unlike commonly believed, Goethe was not a heartbreaker and conqueror. It wasn’t until he went to Italy that he finally had diverse sexual experiences, not least with young men. The film bases this view on letters that Goethe wrote to his friend Friedrich Heinrich Jacobi in which he reported of his sexual experiences.

As in all his films, however, von Praunheim ultimately takes direct aim at the present day. This is particularly evident by his putting into perspective an uncivil exchange of intellectual and aesthetic blows from the 19th century: Heinrich Heine’s public accusations that August von Platen loved men has remained in the public memory to this day – no less so than von Platen’s massively anti-Semitic-flavoured attacks against Heine, at a time when public expressions of Jew-hatred were gaining increasing acceptance. Von Praunheim views the identified battlefield (homophobia vs. anti-Semitism) as an issue that is still of civil-society relevance today.

Anyone who is even the least familiar with Rosa von Praunheim’s work knows that the filmmaker loves to provoke. Goethe is basically the sacred cow of the German educated bourgeoisie, so one has to see it as almost inevitable that Rosa von Praunheim would one day also take a crack at that “creature”. With FRIENDSHIP OF MEN, the indefinite eventually becomes the precisely now, and in many conversations – inspired by Robert Tobin’s book, Warm Brothers: Queer Theory and the Age of Goethe – it apparently becomes clear to von Praunheim that playing intellectually with the homoeroticism of the 18th century has justification and contemporary relevance.

Even if no fundamental reinterpretation of all existing cultural and historical findings is undertaken, this film does aim to slightly skew the prevailing view of the great prince of poets and his epoch.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Purchase In Advance.

Showtimes

Wednesday, Jul 8
7:00pm
Likarion Wainaina

CAST: Stycie Waweru, Marrianne Nungo, Nyawara Ndambia, Johnson Fish Chege

About the director:

Likarion Wainaina is a Kenyan Filmmaker born in Moscow, Russia, who lives and works in Nairobi, Kenya. He is marking his seventh year working as a professional Film/TV Director and Cinematographer. In this time he has gathered a wealth of experience and showcased his talents in various productions. As a cinematographer he has also worked on a number of documentaries and commercials and has directed TV shows – both Drama and Sitcoms – that are currently gracing local TV stations in Kenya and Television commercials as well. He has done a number of short films. His film BETWEEN THE LINES, being one of his first short films, later became the first Kenyan Film to be projected on an IMAX screen in Kenya and got him a nomination at the AMCVA awards 2015 for “Best New Online Media”. His most recent Short Film endeavour was taking part at the 48Hour Film Festival 2015 where he and his team worked on the film BAIT, which was selected as one of the top short films screened at the Cannes Film Festival.

Media: 
supa modo movie poster
SUPA MODO -- Heros Live Forever
Director: 
Likarion Wainaina
Country: 
Germany | Kenya
Year: 
2018
Runtime: 
74 minutes

Jo, a witty 9-year old girl who is terminally ill with cancer, loves films and superheroes. She is utterly taken in by the films that Mike, a local VJ, screens at the children’s hospital to entertain the kids. One day, her mother Kathryn takes her home from hospital, to live out her last days. Her sister Mwix protests this decision but their mother is adamant. Jo is stuck at home with nothing to do but play by herself since her age friends are all in school.Mwix, sensing her sister’s loneliness, gives her hope by pretending that Jo has superpowers. Jo, at first, does not believe her but Mwix is very convincing. As they play, Mwix makes sure that Jo understands that Kathryn can never know anything about these games. What starts off with Jo and Mwix as a simple game with “moving” table salt ,progresses to “freezing” her friends at a football game. Mwix thinks that it’s working great and starts to involve more people in the scheme she believes is giving her sister a chance to enjoy her last days.

Mike warns Mwix that their little game will turn sour if she doesn’t stop it. Mwix tells him that “there is no harm in a little pretending“, but Mike tells on Mwix and takes Kathryn to the scene of the latest stunt. However, the stunt goes a little too far when Jo, in an attempt to stop a speeding vehicle, narrowly survives being run over. Kathryn is furious.Jo runs from the scene to the cliff where her dead father used to take her. Kathryn and Mwix find her there and Jo reveals to them that she always knew that she didn’t really have powers, but went along because it seemed to make everyone happy. Asking Jo what her wish is, she tells Kathryn and Mxix that he biggest dream is to make a superhero movie. Determined to make this dream come true and to give Jo hope again, Kathryn enlists the help of the entire village for a major plot…

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Purchase In Advance.

Showtimes

Wednesday, Aug 12
7:00pm
Wednesday, Sep 9
7:00pm
Wednesday, Oct 14
7:00pm
Wednesday, Nov 11
7:00pm
Wednesday, Dec 9
7:00pm

Details about each month's films and a link for ticket purchases will be posted as soon as they become available.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Showtimes

Wednesday, Aug 12
7:00pm
Wednesday, Sep 9
7:00pm
Wednesday, Oct 14
7:00pm
Wednesday, Nov 11
7:00pm
Wednesday, Dec 9
7:00pm

Details about each month's films and a link for ticket purchases will be posted as soon as they become available.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Showtimes

Wednesday, Aug 12
7:00pm
Wednesday, Sep 9
7:00pm
Wednesday, Oct 14
7:00pm
Wednesday, Nov 11
7:00pm
Wednesday, Dec 9
7:00pm

Details about each month's films and a link for ticket purchases will be posted as soon as they become available.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Showtimes

Wednesday, Aug 12
7:00pm
Wednesday, Sep 9
7:00pm
Wednesday, Oct 14
7:00pm
Wednesday, Nov 11
7:00pm
Wednesday, Dec 9
7:00pm

Details about each month's films and a link for ticket purchases will be posted as soon as they become available.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12

Showtimes

Sunday, Nov 29
3:00pm
Tobias Wiemann

Cast: Mia Kasalo, Samuel Girardi, Susanne Bormann, Denis Moschitto, Jerry Hoffmann, Jasmin Tabatabai, David Bredin, Shenia Pitschmann

Media: 
mountain miracle movie poster
MOUNTAIN MIRACLE – AN UNEXPECTED FRIENDSHIP (Amelie rennt)
Director: 
Tobias Wiemann
Country: 
Germany | Italy
Year: 
2017
Runtime: 
97 minutes

Amelie (13) thinks of herself as a tough big-city brat and she probably is indeed the most stubborn girl in all of Berlin. Amelie doesn’t let anyone tell her what to do, least of all her parents, who ship her off to a special clinic in the mountains after just another asthma attack. Exactly what Amelie definitely doesn’t want. But instead of getting help at the clinic, she runs off and flees to a place where certainly no one would expect to find her: the top of the mountain. When the clinic and her parents realize she ran away, a big search for her is underway. Focused on trying to find a hiding place in the mountains, Amelie meets the quirky boy named Bart. When Bart saves her life, Amelie realizes that Bart is actually a lot cooler than she first thought. Learning of Amelie’s illness, Bart tells her about an old tradition happening that time of the year, the Alps Mountain Fires. These mountain fires are miracles, which allegedly help cure the sick: humans and animals. Now on a mission to get to the fires in time, the kids take off on an adventurous journey of hope and true friendship.

Special Admission

In the tradition of special films in Germany for the holiday season, this screening is FREE for all children under 12 yrs and GENERAL ADMISSION is $7.00.

Purchase In Advance.

Showtimes

Wednesday, Aug 12
7:00pm
Wednesday, Sep 9
7:00pm
Wednesday, Oct 14
7:00pm
Wednesday, Nov 11
7:00pm
Wednesday, Dec 9
7:00pm

Details about each month's films and a link for ticket purchases will be posted as soon as they become available.

Special Admission

$10 General Admission; $8 Students/Seniors; $6 Children under 12