This year Berlin International Film Festival Panorama is presenting 16 feature films in its main programme, 14 in Panorama Special, 20 works in its Panorama Dokumente series and three supporting films. They are from 29 countries, 27 of which are screening as world premieres, 12 are directorial debuts.

Opening films of the main programme, Panorama Special and Panorama Dokumente

The main programme will open on February 10 in CinemaxX 7 with Tomboy, French director Céline Sciamma’s second film. Ten-year-old Laure has just moved into a new neighbourhood. When she passes as a boy to the other children, she encourages the situation and calls herself Mickaël. Yet it’s not so easy for this self-confident kid to maintain her claim in the world around her. Tomboy is screening cross section with Generation Kplus.

This year’s Panorama Special will be presented at the FriedrichstadtPalast and Kino International. It will open on February 11 with two brilliant works that are strong in genre and political clout. The first is Brazilian filmmaker José Padilha’s Tropa de Elite 2, which does not just take up his Golden Bear-winning film from 2008 again, but also shifts the perspective. A human rights activist in Brazil is elected district representative, yet he is the antithesis of the militia, police and, above all, the political system. The second opening film is Lee Tamahori’s Belgian production, The Devil’s Double. Baghdad in the early 1990s: following his father’s example, Saddam Hussein’s son Uday (Dominic Cooper) searches for a double to cover up his excessive lifestyle and ends up forcing his school friend Latif into the role (also Dominic Cooper).

As usual, Panorama Dokumente will be showing its premieres in CineStar 7 and Kino International. It will open on February 11 with Lithuanian director Mantas Kvedaravicius’ Barzakh, a Finnish-Lithuanian co-production by Aki Kaurismäki. Post-war Chechnya: a man has disappeared. The investigators get caught up in a whole host of dreadful secrets and are in danger themselves. Based on one Chechen family, the film depicts the horrors of the war after the withdrawal of the Russians.


Main Topics

Intimate Takes

Not only technical developments (tiny cameras, editing software on laptops) have encouraged filmmakers to take an intimate look at things, but it is also the take of the zeitgeist, which due to never-ending options and exceedingly complex dangers has turned inwards to what is manageable. Though in most cases, behind the micro lurks the macro: there’s no escape. A splendid example is Kevin Macdonald’s Life In A Day that is made up entirely of intimate snippets, collected around the world.

The other films on this topic are: Fjellet, Die Vaterlosen, Über uns das All, Medianeras, Here, OFF BEAT, The Queen Has No Crown



The fight for a place in the sun: it often involves high hopes, though in succeeding generations these may dissolve into new frustrations. Four examples tell of different stages in this process: Man At Sea, Dernier étage gauche gauche, Amador, Die Jungs vom Bahnhof Zoo


It’s again a central theme in this year’s Panorama. State authority versus state authority – a contradiction found in a number of productions and the constant underlying question is: how do people get their powerful positions? That this can appear to take place in a folksy, democratic manner is illustrated most entertainingly in Italian director Giulio Manfredonia’s farce within a farce Qualunquemente (Whatsoeverly): here everything revolves around political behaviour on the provincial stage. Qualunque just must become mayor: Go and get ‘em!

Further films on this topic include:

The Special opening films mentioned earlier as well as John Michael McDonagh’s The Guard, an Irish-British production, with Brendan Gleeson and Don Cheadle; and Bu-dang-geo-rae (The Unjust) by Seung-wan Ryoo from the Republic of Korea.


Three directors, one story: the television production Dreileben is being presented jointly by Forum and Panorama (see Forum press release from January 17, 2011). Christian Petzold, Dominik Graf and Christoph Hochhäusler’s project evolved from a discussion that the filmmakers had about methods of storytelling. After its world premiere at the Delphi Filmpalast, Panorama will screen Dreileben for the public on Berlinale Kinotag, February 20, at the Kino International.

The TEDDY will be 25!

It’s the 25th round of the queer film award at the Berlinale. True to its long-standing motto “no location is off limit for us”, it will touch down this time at Berlin Tempelhof Airport, in the Main Terminal. Celebrate with us one of the Berlinale’s most popular events on February 18.

Around 25,000 viewers will cast their ballots: probably the biggest festival jury in the world! Though now, in its 13th year, we’ve got news: two films will win this year, one feature and one documentary. After the award ceremony, both winning films will screen in CinemaxX 7 on Berlinale Kinotag, the last Sunday of the festival.

In addition to the films announced earlier, this year’s titles include:

Panorama Dokumente

Barzakh by Mantas Kvedaravicius, Finland/Lithuania
Bombay Beach by Alma Har’el, USA
How Are You by Jannik Splidsboel, Denmark, world premiere
Im Himmel, Unter der Erde. Der Jüdische Friedhof Weißensee by Britta Wauer, Germany, world premiere
Leicht muss man sein, Fliegen muss man können by Annette Frick, Germany, world premiere
Mama Africa by Mika Kaurismäki, Germany/South Africa/Finland, world premiere
The Bengali Detective by Philip Cox, Great Britain/USA/Austria
The Big Eden by Peter Dörfler, Germany, world premiere with Rolf Eden, Brigitte, Ursula Buchfellner, Joram Kaniuk
Zai Yi Qi (Together) by Zhao Liang, People’s Republic of China

Panorama supporting film

Warum Madame Warum by Johny Heys, Germany
with Zazie de Paris

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