Police comedy drama opens the Berlin Film Festival

Not only is it Chico Buarque who likes Budapest. The celebrated American filmmaker Wes Anderson, who studied philosophy but entered the world of cinema with short films, transformed a hotel frequented by VIPs into the scene of a somewhat dramatic police comedy with lots of action.

Rui Martins, Berlin

It's The Great Hotel Budapest, co -produced by Americans and Germans, though still unpublished, and it seems to have everything to be a blockbuster. The rigorous selection of Berlin not only put the film in the international competition but also made sure it was opening the 64th Berlin Film Festival.

A good way to start displaying some 400 films distributed in several shows in which stands a general trend toward a hardly joyous time, which preceded World War II, in which the rise of German National Socialism threw Europe into war, provoked the genocide of the Holocaust and the destruction left as a balance .

A simple memory exercise with the opening film inspired by Stefan Zweig or a premonition before a current European crisis atmosphere in which nationalism and populism resurface combined with the extreme right, while reinforcing the political rejection of immigrants?

George Clooney takes his Berlin film The Monuments Men, of which he is director and lead actor, Matt Damon, telling the true story of a group of American, British and French specialists in the various art forms, works of art, curators and directors of museums to protect the European artistic heritage from the prey of and destruction by the Nazis.

Since there is no age limit for directors, Alain Resnais, veteran French director of 91 years, goes to Berlin with his film Love, Drinking and Singing, starring the faithful wife and actress Sabine Azema, based on an English play.

The actress Léa Seydoux , considered after the film The Life of Adèle as the new Brigitte Bardot, plays the lead role in the new version of Christophe Gans's Beauty and the Beast, and participates in the opening movie.

A special attraction is the film by Lars von Trier, Nymphomaniac I, in its full version, with Charlotte Gainbourg. After the interview in Cannes that caused his expulsion, we are waiting for the Danish director to talk about his vision of sexuality.

A Golden Bear will be delivered to filmmaker Ken Loach "for the manner in which he humorously portrays social injustices," said Berlinale director Dieter Kosslick. The tribute is accompanied by a retrospective of his films.

Competing in the International Competition, there will be displayed on 11 February, at noon, with the critics present, the movie Praia do Futuro, by Karim Aïnouz, with the former commander of the Brazilian Shock Troops,a film awarded the Golden Bear, Wagner Moura, a story of gay love.

Three other Brazilian feature films participating in the Berlin Film Festival - Castanha, showing in the Forum, by David Pretto, a documentary about the gaucho transvestite or transsexual actor, João Carlos Castanha; in the Panorama, the movie Today I want to return alone, by the filmmaker Daniel Ribeiro, about a blind gay teenager in search of independence; and also in the Panorama, The Man of crowds, by Marcelo Gomes and Cao Guimarães, which gives a structure to a Brazilian tale of Edgar Alan Poe.

Anyway, the first interview of Edward Snowden, after becoming a refugee in Russia, gathered by journalist and filmmaker Hubert Seipel, is part of the long list of films in the 64th Berlin Film Festival.

A parallel exhibition, Native, will show a film about the Guarani-Kaiowá Indians, Birdwatchers, or The land of the red men, a Brazilian-Italian co-production, directed by the Italian Marco Bechis, dealing with the expansion of agribusiness in Brazil and the reaction of Indians who occupy a farm installed on their land.

Rui Martins, in Berlin
Translated by Olga Santos
Portuguese version


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Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey