Film Archive

Andes Uprising, a Buffer City Re-Inventing Itself Through Architecture

Documentary Film
Germany
2019
14 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Bernardo Villagra Meruvia
Bernardo Villagra Meruvia
Bernardo Villagra Meruvia
El Alto, Bolivia, is growing fast – wild, but not shapeless. An investigation into urban aesthetics comes across the Cholets: miniature palaces which serve as residential and business premises for wealthy indigenous Aymara families. The colourful, shining constructions may resemble spaceships lost in the urban wastelands. But a double movement of expert commentary and city symphony lays bare the social foundations of this eclectic architecture.

Lukas Foerster
International Programme 2019
Aura Timm Völkner

Migraine is a lifelong unchosen companion. “Aura” tells a visually impressive and intense tale about life with it and the attempt to become reconciled to it.

Aura

Animated Film
Germany
2019
3 minutes
subtitles: 
No

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Fabienne Priess
Timm Völkner
Andreas Skandy
Timm Völkner
Timm Völkner, Ryoji Yamada
Timm Völkner
Jan Brett
A voice speaks in very intimate terms to a lifelong, not self-chosen companion. Remarkably creative and precise, Timm Voelkner guides us through a flow from one image to the next, building bridges between the emotional states of a person suffering from classical migraine and the perception disorders in the aura phase. In only two minutes, the film tells a visual and intense tale of life with an often underestimated disorder and of the attempt to get reconciled to it.

André Eckardt
International Programme 2019
Autobahn Daniel Abma

Traffic on the B 61 through the spa town of Bad Oeynhausen is permanently gridlocked. The promised cure is a bypass whose construction is documented here: with residents and passers-by.

Autobahn

Documentary Film
Germany
2019
85 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Niklas Burghardt, Johannes Wöpkemeier
Daniel Abma
Henning Fuchs
David Schittek
Momas Schütze
Daniel Abma
Malte Eiben
The spa town of Bad Oeynhausen: Every day, thousands of trucks roll through the city centre and over the B 61 federal road which connects the A 2 and A 30 motorways, respectively Warsaw and Rotterdam. When the threat of losing its status as a health resort looms on the horizon, which means losing the inviting title of “Bad”, something has to change: A bypass is to be built.

Over a period of eight years, the film documents the gridlocked traffic at this bottleneck, the efforts of the mayor, police, fire brigade and construction companies, the delays in the construction of the northern bypass and above all the reactions of the affected residents. The latter look forward to some quiet and relief – or will soon have the motorway right in front of their door. The long-term documentation focuses less on the large-scale infrastructural measures than on their consequences for the people living by the roadside. Other stories are “picked up” there with a fine instinct for unusual characters and leaving lots of space for their personalities and quirks. These include the local tradition of counting trucks on the federal road or the construction site as well as taking a walk or jogging on the long unfinished section of the road.

Frederik Lang
International Programme 2019
Bekar Evi – Das Junggesellenhaus Dirk Schäfer

Life is no picnic, especially not for Kurdish bachelors in Istanbul. Seven seasonal workers live in an unusual flat share in a dilapidated house.

Bekar Evi – Das Junggesellenhaus

Documentary Film
Germany
2019
76 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Dirk Schäfer
Dirk Schäfer
Deborah Wargon
Nikola Krivokuca
Dirk Schäfer
Metin Bozkurt
Life is no picnic, especially not for a Kurdish bachelor in Istanbul. Seven single seasonal workers from Eastern Anatolia live in a dilapidated house in the metropolis. The men from two generations form an unusual flat sharing community. They live and sleep at extremely close quarters, sharing a single shower, which occasionally leads to heated arguments: typical flat share disputes about doing the dishes or tidying up. The older among them settle them with fatherly authority.

The protagonists talk about their origins and dreams. The German filmmaker Dirk Schäfer, who has lived in Istanbul for a long time, interweaves their poetic descriptions with sensitive observations of their partnership of convenience. Experiences of social discrimination and chicanery leave their traces, but humour and friendship make their life easier – or, as one of the “bachelors” puts it with a touch of humour: Now he is a street seller of Ottoman sugar paste to lend some sweetness to his life.

Annina Wettstein
International Programme 2019
Blieschow Christoph Sarow

Tom spends his summer holidays at his grandfather’s, where many things are thrillingly beautiful, some scary and others rough, like his cousin, for example, and farm life.

Blieschow

Animated Film
Germany
2019
9 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lena-Carolin Lohfink
Christoph Sarow
Andreas Pfeiffer
Christoph Sarow
Christoph Sarow
Christoph Sarow, Sofiia Melnyk, Janina Putzker, Laura Staab, Sarah Schulz, Maria Schmidt
Christoph Sarow, Simon Thummet
Marc Fragstein, Luis Schöffend
Gameboy in hand, a ramble through the ripe cornfield, the island in the Baltic Sea lying there in the yellow sunlight. It’s summer and Tom is spending his holidays at his grandfather’s, where many things are thrillingly beautiful, some scary and others rough, like his cousin, for example, and farm life. With great sensitivity and in strong, warm colours, Christoph Sarow tells of a small step on the path towards growing up and, with magnificent associative images, allows us insights into the boy’s emotional world.

André Eckardt
International Programme 2019
Brand Jan Koester, Alexander Lahl

Markus is the Honorary Mayor of Tröglitz. Together with his wife, he campaigns for taking in forty refugees in 2015. That’s when “his” commune suddenly shows a strange and ugly face.

Brand

Animated Film
Germany
2019
5 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Max Mönch
Jan Koester, Alexander Lahl
Hannes Schulze
Jan Koester
Jan Koester
Jan Koester
Elise Landschek
Hannes Schulze
Markus is Honorary Mayor in Saxony-Anhalt. In 2015, he and his wife commit themselves to providing shelter for forty refugees. Then “his” commune of Tröglitz takes on a strange visage: The population is disturbingly polarised and suddenly the refugee home is on fire. This animated documentary tries to understand what happened. Dark hatchings and shadings are contrasted with idyllic watercolour landscapes and bear witness to things that are lost and things that must be resolved.

Nadja Rademacher

Bread, Revenge?

Documentary Film
France,
Germany
2019
76 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Stefan Hayn (Stefan Hayn Filme und Malerei)
Stefan Hayn
Till Megerle
Stefan Hayn
Stefan Hayn
Klaus Barm
In 1944, the French resistance fighter Robert Antelme was captured by the Germans. He was taken to Gandersheim, a satellite camp of the Buchenwald concentration camp. In the last months of the Second World War, Antelme got to experience the whole extent of dehumanisation under National Socialist tyranny. Soon after his liberation he wrote the book “The Human Race” about it, which today is a classic of coming to terms with the past.

Stefan Hayn already dealt with Antelme in his film “Straub” (2014). Now he examines in more detail a series of texts which contributed to the post-war debate about how to deal with German guilt. Hayn calls his film a “lecture filmée” in the opening credits, a “filmed reading”. It is of crucial importance that the texts (including reflections on a theft of bread among prisoners) are present in the French original, even if recited by German native speakers. Different forms of “reading” that culminate in a sketch-like scenic re-enactment are interlaced with contemporary shots of memorial sites today to form a multi-layered film essay, historical-political in the best sense.

Bert Rebhandl

Das Fieber

Documentary Film
Austria,
Germany,
Switzerland
2019
99 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Markus Wailand
Katharina Weingartner
Siri Klug
Andrea Wagner
Toby Cornish
Katharina Weingartner
Patrick Becker, Peter Braeker
The fight won’t end. Malaria still rules large parts of Africa. Every 60 seconds a child south of the Sahara dies of the disease. All in all, it causes around half a million deaths per year. But why is it so impossible to successfully conquer the disease, even though countless relief organisations have been working on a solution for many years?

The reason, of course, is money, global conflicts of interest, the powerful pharmaceutical industry. That’s nothing new. But the Austrian filmmaker Katharina Weingartner produced an enthralling documentary thriller which literally inscribes exciting, context-shifting and -widening lines of connection into the more or less familiar general picture: connections between the parasite and the pharmaceutical industry, between self-determination in East Africa and the richest man in the world. The focus is on three courageous people in Uganda and Kenya who are fighting the disease on the spot and are often more successful with alternative methods than Western medicine is comfortable with. Because after all a solution of their own, without foreign help and technology, without the mercantile and public philanthropic interests of the helpers, would mean independence.

Julia Weigl
International Programme 2019
Gegen den Strom – Abgetaucht in Venezuela Sobo Swobodnik

Thomas Walter has been wanted by the law as a leftist terrorist for almost 25 years. Having been underground for years, he now opens up to questions and the camera’s gaze in his Venezuelan exile.

Gegen den Strom – Abgetaucht in Venezuela

Documentary Film
Germany
2019
84 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Ümit Uludağ, Martin Roelly, Erik Winker
Sobo Swobodnik
Sobo Swobodnik
Manuel Stettner
Sobo Swobodnik
Tom Weber, Andreas Mühlschlegel
Thomas Walter was part of the Berlin autonomous scene. In 1995 he and two co-perpetrators were accused of having attempted an arson attack on an uninhabited deportation prison in Berlin-Grünau which was prevented by the police. Arrest warrants for the three as members of a leftist terrorist association are still valid today. They went underground for decades. It is only in 2017 that Walter contacts his family in Germany again – from Venezuela, where he has applied for asylum.

Thomas Walter is also a relative of the Berlin filmmaker Sobo Swobodnik, who travels with a camera to the Andes in 2019 to meet the former autonomist in his home surrounded by vegetable gardens. This is where he is working on a music project with the Berlin singer Pablo Charlemoine aka Mal Élevé in an improvised studio in the kitchen. There’s also an extensive interview in which Walter, in Baden dialect, talks remarkably frankly (and self-righteously) about attitudes and events then and now. His former enthusiasm for the Chavist project has long since given way to criticism, but his anarchist ideals are still there. A film that offers a rare insight into a world usually invisible due to the pressure of legal persecution, with a soundtrack featuring the political and activist songs of Walter & Co.

Silvia Hallensleben
International Programme 2019
Gundermann Revier Grit Lemke

Singer-songwriter, poet and excavator operator in the Lusatian brown coal mines: Gerhard Gundermann’s lyrics in dialogue with observations and conversations from a region facing radical changes.

Gundermann Revier

Documentary Film
Germany
2019
98 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Gregor Streiber
Grit Lemke
Uwe Mann
Sven Kulik
Grit Lemke
Oliver Prasnikar
“My swing stands in an enchanted garden, just behind the railway embankment. When I’m at the top of the swing, I see trains squealing by day and night, leaving black dust behind. They come from huge holes gaping between our villages. As a child I thought the whole world looked like this. Holes with villages in between, my swing in the middle. And the trains. They are coal trains.”

Gerhard Gundermann (1955–1998), singer-songwriter, poet and excavator operator in the Lusatian brown coal mines. In this region, global problems are condensed on a local level as if by a burning glass – from structural change to climate crisis. Mostly unpublished archive material and Gundermann’s songs enter into a dialogue with observations and conversations in his “district”, accompanied by the voice-over of the director, who is no less deeply rooted in the coal mining district. Home and its destruction through strip mining, utopian ideas and the question of individual responsibility run through the songs, as do their consequences for gainful employment and the environment at the end of the industrial age. And they are more topical than ever today: “Where my swing stood and later your excavator there is now a lake.”

Frederik Lang
International Programme 2019
Ich Will Anne Isensee

She screams and whispers her wishes and dances compromise out of this world as she pleases. An enthusiastic beacon for self-determination and joie de vivre.

Ich Will

Animated Film
Germany
2019
2 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Anne Isensee
Anne Isensee
Sarah Farina
Anne Isensee
Anne Isensee
Anne Isensee
Artur Sommerfeld
A woman’s voice screams and whispers her wishes, depending on how she feels and what she wants. Her cartoonishly pared-down and overdrawn body dances compromise out of the world. And when the whimsy takes her, she just loses her shape to become the world or to reach her own ego. Straight, in zigzags or sweeping curves we move through the colour cosmos of life. Anne Isensee erects an enthusiastic beacon for self-determination and joie de vivre.

André Eckardt
International Programme 2019
In the Name of Scheherazade oder der erste Biergarten in Teheran Narges Kalhor

Narges Kalhor sets out with a light touch to undermine traditional ideas about the appearance and making of a documentary film.

In the Name of Scheherazade oder der erste Biergarten in Teheran

Documentary Film
Germany
2019
76 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Nicholas Coleman (Oasysdigital)
Narges Kalhor
Yorgia Karidi
Julia Swoboda
Frank Müller
Kevin Müller
Aydin Alinejad, Narges Kalhor
Philip Hutter
Narges Kalhor
Narges Kalhor sets out with a light touch to undermine traditional ideas about the appearance and making of a documentary film. Her characters: a homosexual teenager from Syria who applies for asylum in Germany, an artist whose work is always traced back to her Afghan roots, and a sturdy female beer brewer of Iranian descent who – against all odds – wants to open a beer garden in Tehran and fights against the windmills of Iranian bureaucracy.

In a wild pastiche, the director interweaves the stories of these people with an animated tale of the fabulous Scheherazade and her own struggle for a film that foregoes any compromise with the expectations of others. She is confronted by an invisible male editor who tries again and again to make the plot “smoother”, to level out the apparently complicated elements in order to accommodate the “viewing habits” of the public. Narges Kalhor says she makes films about life and its conditions. She says nothing about the anarchic joy with which she interlaces reality and fiction in the process. There’s no need. In the end one can simply register that the experienced editor’s favourite is the story of the first beer garden in Tehran.

Luc-Carolin Ziemann



Awarded with the Goethe-Institut Documentary Film Prize.

International Programme 2019
Inside Me Maria Trigo Teixeira

On behalf of many, Anna shares her presumably most profound decision so far: get an abortion or not. A report about a decision as an animated documentary.

Inside Me

Animated Film
Germany
2019
5 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Maria Trigo Teixeira (Filmuniversität Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF)
Maria Trigo Teixeira
Falk Meutzner
Maria Trigo Teixeira
Aleksandra Landsmann
Representative of many young girls and women, Anna lets us look back on and share her probably most profound decision so far: abortion or not. The contradictory emotions of a nineteen-year-old are translated into sketch-like scenes. The incisive process of decision-making is captured visually and metaphorically. Thanks to the courageous openness of many women, Maria Trigo Teixeira artistically visualised this issue in her animated documentary graduation film.

Nadja Rademacher
International Programme 2019
Lickalike Rebecca Blöcher

When humans play god with nature, the theatre of the world gets more and more cramped. Division and segmentation, reordering and reorientation – the world is upside down. Look for the roots!

Lickalike

Animated Film
Germany
2019
8 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Fabian Driehorst
Rebecca Blöcher
Eva Reiter
Rebecca Blöcher
Rebecca Blöcher
Rebecca Blöcher, Phil Maron
Rebecca Blöcher
Eva Reiter
Who is spooning up the primeval soup here? When humans play god with nature, the theatre of the world gets more and more cramped. But in the dark womb of creation, new bonds are ceaselessly being created – division and separation, reordering and reorientation. Rebecca Blöcher’s drawing and cut-out animation with photos is part of the omnibus film “Happiness Machine”. Look for the roots beyond heteronomy – and the world may no longer be upside down!

Nadja Rademacher
International Programme 2019
Luca (m/w/d) Ricarda Funnemann, Hannah Schwaiger

Luca is young, peculiar and sometimes in love with their own poses. But can “diverse” capture Luca’s distinctiveness? An observant, caring advertising film for being a star in one’s own life.

Luca (m/w/d)

Documentary Film
Germany
2019
7 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Ricarda Funnemann, Hannah Schwaiger
Ricarda Funnemann, Hannah Schwaiger
Henric Schleiner
Hannah Schwaiger
Ricarda Funnemann, Hannah Schwaiger
Arno Augustin
“Diverse” is the magic word recently used by the bureaucracy to try to administer the civil status of people outside the binary sexual norm. It’s none of our business what Luca’s identity papers say now. What Luca is and wants to be, whether Luca’s distinctiveness can be described at all by the term “diverse”, yes. Luca poses, Luca dresses appropriately, Luca has never been everybody’s cup of tea, Luca dances … and gets a universally valid advertising film here about being a star in one’s own life.

Sylvia Görke
International Programme 2019
mySELFie Anne Scheschonk

The story of Maya, whose hair fell out completely when she was twelve. A film about searching and finding oneself and what it means to love oneself. With or without hair.

mySELFie

Documentary Film
Germany
2019
50 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Mike Brandin (in one media)
Anne Scheschonk
Konstantin Wolkenstein, Kai Luniak
Markus Kloth
Marc Böhlhoff
Julius Dettmer
Florian Marquardt
When Maya is twelve she suddenly loses all her hair. Long blonde strands lie on the pillow, the sweater and in the shower. She is bald within two weeks. Maya suffers from alopecia areata, her body rejects her hair like foreign bodies. Two years later Maya has become used to her bald head. But the summer is brutal, far too hot for a wig or a cap under which she can hide so well. In summer she is naked and has some burning questions: Am I someone else without my hair? Am I okay the way I am? Am I beautiful? A member of a generation where the endlessly shared selfie is the standard, Maya works on her self-image like everybody else and compares it regularly with the (putative) external perception.

Director Anne Scheschonk follows her protagonist’s daily life, which is not much different from that of her contemporaries. School plays a minor role at best, what’s much more important are girl-friends, arguments with parents and the question when that cute guy is going to turn up at the bathing lake or party. Even if Maya will probably never have it easy: By now she knows fairly well what’s good for her and what isn’t – another consequence of the disease. And this makes her considerably more mature than many others … not just her own age.

Luc-Carolin Ziemann