The DOK-Team recommends
If you ask us...>
Head of Documentary Programme
Which film from the 2014 programme best reflects the free spirit and revolutionary heart of DOK Leipzig for you?
Shunter by Jürgen Böttcher, shot by Thomas Plenert – because in times when everybody else is talking mindlessly, it can be revolutionary to simply shut your mouth and watch. Because themes and places are completely interchangeable. And because in this case it’s about art, and not about surface, sensation, information or revelation. Because of all this, a black-white railway worker filming one winter’s night at the train station of Dresden-Friedrichstadt in 1984 can tell us more than Edward Snowden, without saying a single word.
Which production has touched you, surprised you or made you laugh the most?
I can tell you who the absolute favorite protagonist of the entire selection committee for 2014 was: Lolita from Rules of the Game. A chubby teenager, constantly in struggle with her wallet, the job agency and life in general, which is not treating her well. Because of this, Lolita never smiles back. In the beginning, you think she’s just not the smartest, and will probably be presented in the film. But it becomes more and more clear that Lolita completely sees through the entire game that we all play, and that she’s ultimately probably cooler than all of us put together. It really puts you in a good mood to see her avoiding it all. Lolita rules!
Which film would you recommend to festival newcomers?
It’s Now or Never and How to Invent Reality, a double bill by Jon Bang Carlsen. These are the perfect introduction to the theme “How authentic is documentary film?“ (By the way, you will also meet same matchmaker from “It’s Now or Never“ nearly twenty years later in Match Me! – which really makes you think about how this film came into existence...)
And what is, in your opinion, the programme highlight for loyal festival fans?
There’s only one: our universally loved, legendary DEFA-Matinee on Sunday morning, Boomtown in Agfa. Leipzig-Films from the 50s with cute pettycoats and quiffs, Young Pioneers in the zoo, schmalzy hits...served to us by cornerstone of the Leipzig film scene, Claudius Nießen, who has not shaved his beard since the 50s. Now that’s pure loyalty!