Rainer Werner Fassbinder visits for two weeks the “Theater der Welt” festival 1981 in Cologne. 30 companies showed in over 100 performances their own visions of a new theater. Framed by Fassbinders reading of one of the famoust essays on theater: Antonin Artauds “The Theater and its double”. Continue reading
An extraordinary performance by a 10-year-old girl anchors “The Children of Diyarbakir,” the debut feature of Miraz Bezar. Set in the predominantly Kurdish city of Diyarbakir, Turkey, the pic takes a straightforward, non-sensationalized approach to the tragic story of a brother and sister orphaned when their parents are assassinated by a secret-services paramilitary officer. Though it shows its first-feature origins, the film has moments, especially toward the end, that so transcend the material as to make the journey doubly worthwhile. A healthy fest life is assured, while Euro arthouse play isn’t out of the question.
Though less inspired, the early scenes do the necessary work of introducing characters and establishing a mood: Gulistan (Senay Orak) and her younger brother, Firat (Muhammed Al), have a normal childhood with their mom (Fahriye Celik) and dad (Alisan Onlu) and new baby brother. Dad is a Kurdish journalist; on their way back from a wedding, the family is stopped by three gunmen, who shoot the parents dead in front of the kids. The brief scene is all the more powerful because Bezar downplays any excess in either the lensing or editing. Continue reading
Two single parents decide to move in together and their two teenage children fall in love. Continue reading
Set in the boarding school milieu, the film depicts the meeting of shy Gregor and mysterious Billie. Billie has a son, her husband is in jail. Arthur, Gregor’s friend, is a serial Lothario, forever unfaithful to his girlfriend Pia. Both Arthur and Billie have had a similar mystical experience related to someone’s death. While Gregor believes that an elective affinity between two people preordains their lives, Arthur does not even subscribe to romantic feelings between the sexes.
Arthur is a failure at school and becomes mixed up with criminal elements, Gregor goes on to attend university, and remains in pursuit of Billie who passes in and out of his life on several occasions. Continue reading
Makimono is an Asian roll painting depicting a landscape. The subject of the film is the language of film itself, its mutability and its influence on the viewer’s vision and thinking. While the film gradually progresses the viewer is gently invited to reflect on the development of the film in its expressive potential. Continue reading
“A long setting of a basement window to the street. Slower and stopping down the street brothers in Hamburg (where Nekes lives). A stand of the belly of a girl on her legs and her dress. Then, vagina and penis, as they are complementary. The 60-minute film is silent. The canvas, as in previous Nekes movies, to the canvas of the painter. It does not look in an imaginary space, one sees an area that is divided divided, with each cut and replaced by a new canvas. In particular, an impression: strong, cool calculation. It stands there like a block. Immovable. The picture is so much that it is beyond the linguistically appropriate formulation. One must see that.”
Werner Kließ Continue reading
“Aberjhani at Amazon. com” wrote:
The film THE HEALER (a.k.a. “Julie Walking Home”) poses the kind of unsettling metaphysical questions that many prefer to avoid asking. At the same time, it suggests some intriguing answers. Like the film “The Crime of Father Amaro” the movie “The Healer” is a study of the degrees to which human beings can enjoy the gift of human sexuality while simultaneously attempting to serve as channels for spiritual healing, social harmony, and political integrity. That Alexei–played flawlessly by Lothaire Bluteau–is a true and gifted spiritual healer becomes clear from the outset. We witness him as a child in a hospital where doctors discover that standing him on the back of an ailing patient relieves the patient’s pain. Moreover, his very presence apparently has a healing impact on every patient in the ward. As an adult, Alexei becomes famous as a healer who shares his gifts freely with the world. But like the proverbial prophet without honor in his own hometown, he has to endure the complaints of an aging mother who points out that not only is his spiritual generosity towards the world doing nothing to alleviate her financial distress but it is perhaps not the best way to prepare for his own latter years. Continue reading