The 61st Berlin International Film Festival unveiled the films in the Panorama 2011 section. The themes of many first films are daring and hence inspiring, as seen in the work of Israeli filmmaker Michal Aviad who, set against the backdrop of the interminable Palestinian-Israeli conflict, has her protagonists work through traumas in Lo Roim Alaich (Invisible), or with French director Céline Sciamma whose Tomboy portrays the coming of age of a boy in a girl’s body – a deeply touching story, one that is also the subject of a German directorial debut, Sabine Bernardi’s Romeos. Then there’s the French entry Dernier étage gauche gauche (Top Floor Left Wing) by Angelo Cianci that revolves around the next generation of Arab adolescents who are already integrated but marginalized, and of whom too little is demanded. Though, of course, topical political issues are also taken up by famous Europeans, such as the boatpeople from Afghanistan by Greek filmmaker Constantine Giannaris (many-time guest of the Panorama and in the 2002 Competition with One Day In August) in his work Man At Sea; and the past and present consequences of colonisation by Spanish director Icíar Bollaín in her film También la lluvia (Even the Rain). In it, Sebastian (played by Gael García Bernal) casts a drama about the Spanish conquest 500 years earlier with the indigenous people from an entire village. This film is also screening in the Berlinale’s Culinary Cinema series on February 16. Star chef Thomas Kammeier will prepare two dishes inspired by the film for the occasion.

Beyond this, there’s a wave of innovative genre cinema for audiences to discover. For instance, Amador, a warm-hearted intimate piece about an illegal immigrant from South America by Spanish director Fernando León De Aranoa (who presented Familia in the Panorama in 1997 and contributed to the Invisibles, which was produced by Javier Bardem, in 2007). Or Vampire by Iwai Shunji (who opened the Panorama in 2002 with his film All About Lily Chou-Chou) and in which Kevin Zegers plays the most endearing vampire of all time.

New narrative styles are evident in, for example, a first work by Argentinean filmmaker Gustavo Taretto. His film Medianeras revolves around trying to get an Internet junkie to return to real life. And then there’s Jan Gassmann’s feature debut OFFBEAT, an unconventional and atmospheric story from Switzerland about a generation of rappers who are getting on in years. Producers Ridley and Tony Scott, on the other hand, explore the narrative possibilities of social media in Life In A Day, directed by Kevin MacDonald. Selected from thousands of digital contributions sent in by members of the global community, the British filmmaker unveils a kaleidoscope of parallel worlds such as has never been seen before.

Working with 3D demands a completely new approach to the camera, lighting, set design and above all editing: The Mortician by Britain’s Gareth Maxwell Roberts is one of the best-crafted examples so far and demonstrates how this new challenge can be met.

Innovative narrative styles and unusually critical images of society are also discernible in the three films on India in the 2011 Panorama: on a grand scale Vishal Bhardwaj tells of an intimidating female character who moves between the religions and their male proponents in 7 Khoon Maaf (7 Sins Forgiven), while young director Q has angry young men set out – unfiltered and raw – to find a place for themselves in the world in his film debut Gandu (Asshole): “Words are burning inside us. Rap is a way to say them.” British filmmaker Phil Cox lets viewers experience the city of Calcutta up close in The Bengali Detective: it takes you to the darkest corners of the metropolis with private detectives whose businesses are booming because the police can no longer be trusted.

Details about the opening films of the Main Programme, the Panorama Special and Panorama Dokumente as well as the complete Panorama programme will be coming soon.

Panorama Main Programme + Panorama Special

7 Khoon Maaf (7 Sins Forgiven) by Vishal Bhardwaj, India, world premiere
with Priyanka Chopra, John Abraham, Neil Nitin Mukesh, Irrfan Khan, Naseeruddin Shah
Panorama Special

Amador by Fernando León De Aranoa, Spain
with Magaly Solier, Celso Bugallo, Pietro Sibille, Sonia Almarcha, Fanny de Castro
Panorama Special

Byakuyakou (Into the White Night) by Yoshihiro Fukagawa, Japan
with Maki Horikita, Kengo Kora, Eiichiro Funakoshi
Panorama Main Programme

Dernier étage gauche gauche (Top Floor Left Wing) by Angelo Cianci, France/Luxemburg
with Hippolyte Girardot, Mohamed Fellag, Aymen Saidi, Judith Henry, Michel Vuillermoz
Panorama Main Programme

Gandu (Asshole) by Kaushik Mukherjee (Q), India
with Anubrata Basu, Joyraj Bhattacharya, Rituporna Sen, Shilajit Majumder, Kamalika Banerjee
Panorama Main Programme

Here by Braden King, USA
with Ben Foster, Lubna Azabal
Panorama Main Programme

Life In A Day by Kevin MacDonald, Great Britain
Panorama Special

Lo Roim Alaich (Invisible) by Michal Aviad, Israel/Germany, world premiere
with Ronit Elkabetz, Evgenia Dodina
Panorama Main Programme

Man At Sea by Constantine Giannaris, Greece, world premiere
with Andonis Karystinos, Theodora Tzimou, Konstantinos Avarikiotis, Stathis Papadopoulos, Thanasis Tatavlalis
Panorama Special

Medianeras by Gustavo Taretto, Argentina/Germany/Spain, world premiere
with Pilar López de Ayala, Javier Drolas, Inés Efrón, Carla Peterson, Rafael Ferro
Panorama Special

OFFBEAT by Jan Gassmann, Switzerland, world premiere
with Hans-Jakob Mühlethaler, Domenico Pecoraio, Manuel Neuburger, Vesna Garstik, Marlise Fischer
Panorama Main Programme

Qualunquemente by Giulio Manfredonia, Italy
with Sergio Rubini, Lorenza Indovina, Nicola Rignanese, Davide Giordano
Panorama Main Programme

Romeos by Sabine Bernardi, Germany, world premiere
with Rick Okon, Liv Lisa Fries, Maximilian Befort
Panorama Main Programme

Sala samobójców (Suicide Room) by Jan Komasa, Poland, world premiere
with Jakub Gierszal, Roma Gasiorowska, Krzysztof Pieczynski, Agata Kulesza
Panorama Special

También la lluvia (Even The Rain) by Icíar Bollaín, Spain/France/Mexico
with Luis Tosar, Gael García Bernal, Juan Carlos Aduviri, Karra Elejalde, Raúl Arévalo
Panorama Main Programme

The Mortician by Gareth Maxwell Roberts, Great Britain/USA, world premiere, 3D
with Method Man, Edward Furlong, Dash Mihok, Judy Marte, Angelic Zambrana
Panorama Main Programme

Tomboy by Céline Sciamma, France, world premiere
with Zoé Heran, Malonn Raffin, Jeanne Disson, Sophie Cattani, Mathieu Demy
Panorama Main Programme

Vampire by Iwai Shunji, Canada/USA
with Kevin Zegers, Rachel Leigh Cook, Keisha Castle-Hughes, Adelaide Clemens, Kristin Kreuk
Panorama Main Programme

Supporting Films

Porno Melodrama by Romualdas Zabarauskas, Lithuania/France/Finland, world premiere
with Marius Repšys, Vilma Kutaviciute, Kurtis

Spring by Hong Khaou, Great Britain
with Christopher O’Donnell, Jonathan Keane

Subscribe for Blog Updates

Sign up for our latest updates.