Film Archive

Next Masters Wettbewerb 2017
Funeralopolis. A Suburban Portrait Alessandro Redaelli

Two young men in a town near Milan who challenge life itself, love and death. They risk themselves because everything else seems even riskier.

Funeralopolis. A Suburban Portrait

Documentary Film
Italy
2017
94 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Barbara Guieu
Alessandro Redaelli
Ruggero Melis
Alessandro Radaelli
Daniele Fagone, Ruggero Melis, Alessandro Redaelli
Daniele Fagone, Ruggero Melis, Alessandro Redaelli
Michele Benedetti
Losing senses is often the path to finding meaning. Drug paraphernalia in the tiny dirty train toilet. Cut. A belt around a thin upper arm. Fade to black. A needle hanging from a vein. Fade to black. A trickle of blood on the arm. Can you use the water here to wash yourself? Better not. We meet Vash and Felce between Bresso, Sesto San Giovanni and Milan. Vash is younger than Felce, cheerful, with his hair in something that makes him look “like a mushroom”. Felce used to study architecture. They make music, party and take drugs.

Alessandro Redaelli used to shoot juice commercials featuring colourfully dressed and laughing young people. But in this film there are no colours. Some laughing though – and crying. Everything races past and we don’t know where. This “suburban portrait” deals with vanities and fashion, provocation and the right timing. Redaelli insists that his film is not about heroin and definitely not an educational film about the consequences of addiction. To him it’s a film about two friends looking for a meaning in life.

Carolin Weidner
Next Masters Wettbewerb 2019
Never Whistle Alone Marco Ferrari

A cool and therefore all the more breathtaking study of corruption and truth that presents courageous whistleblowers from the “back benches”. Political, abysmal, activating.

Never Whistle Alone

Documentary Film
Italy
2019
74 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Priscilla Robledo, Francesco Crespi
Marco Ferrari
Francesco Leali, Alessandro Branca
Stefano Govi
Neil Devetti
Syd Golding
Marco Ferrari
Vito Martinelli
Ever since Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden everyone knows what a whistleblower is. Betraying secrets for a good cause brings a lot of honour to those who dare expose criminal systems. But becoming a whistleblower also means you lose your (former) life, risk mobbing, persecution and exile.

Director Marco Ferrari talks to seven people from his home country Italy who took this decision, asking them about their motives and the consequences – on a personal level as well as with regard to the crimes they denounced. Even if each of the interviewees worked up the individual courage to denounce system failures, their stories are uncannily similar: Anyone who gets out and does the right thing is immediately faced with aggression, intimidation, corruption, harassment and isolation. The police and judiciary seem not even close to being able to protect whistleblowers adequately respectively deal with their information sensibly. Ferrari doesn’t emphasize the individual characteristics but shows, by means of deliberately exaggerated stagings, what universal patterns of intimidation, cover-ups and thoughtlessness corrupt organisations are founded on. An important, tense film, whose protagonists seem like a blueprint for more moral courage at the desk.

Luc-Carolin Ziemann

Nijolė

Documentary Film
Italy,
Lithuania
2018
79 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Dagnė Vildžiūnaitė, Max Chicco
Sandro Bozzolo
Lina Lapelytė
Sandro Bozzolo
Silvija Vilkaitė, María Cecilia Reyes
Maria Cecilia Reyes, Sandro Bozzolo
Vytis Puronas
Antanas Mockus was Mayor of Bogotá, several times Colombian presidential candidate, and voted into the senate in 2018. But this film is not about the politician, but about his 88-year-old mother, the idiosyncratic artist Nijolė Šivickas. She has consistently protected her private life from the public eye, agreeing only reluctantly to media interviews. Even her son knew almost nothing about her Lithuanian childhood. In her artistic practice, but also emotionally, she had turned her back on her homeland.

Now Nijolė has been invited to give a workshop on the occasion of a great retrospective in Vilnius. The film follows her and Antanas on this journey. It’s basically a son’s look at a mother whose independence and critical social spirit were his constant inspiration. Sandro Bozzolo and his team approach their protagonists with restraint, adapt the montage to their rhythm and focus on the rooms of their creative work, on Nijolė’s meetings with Antanas and their journey home together, which moves both deeply. The son takes his mother by the hand, as does this story of an outer and inner journey with the audience. Which events continue to shape one’s life and which had better be forgotten?

Annina Wettstein


Nominated for the MDR Film Prize

Next Masters Wettbewerb 2019
Sicherheit123 Julia Gutweniger, Florian Kofler

The Alps are covered by a nearly invisible security system that’s supposed to protect humans from natural disasters. A breathtaking narrative of the measuring of a landscape.

Sicherheit123

Documentary Film
Austria,
Italy
2019
72 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Julia Gutweniger, Florian Kofler
Julia Gutweniger, Florian Kofler
Edgars Rubenis
Julia Gutweniger
Julia Gutweniger, Florian Kofler
Florian Kofler
The Alps. Nowadays there’s hardly a mountain left untouched. We have long conquered the lofty peaks and developed even the high mountain ranges as recreational landscapes. The fact that there is practically no limit to exploiting the Alps should not be taken for granted: The whole region is covered by a nearly invisible safety system. Well-camouflaged protective precautions against falling rocks and avalanches are there to ensure accessibility and habitability without fear. On the other hand, concrete fortifications around isolated farms or sculptural curved walls on the slopes to secure a whole village look conspicuous and almost surreal.

“Safety123” captures these constructions and the work that’s usually done in the background in breathtaking images. Quiet sequences show impressively how many-layered this safety system is: The landscape is ceaselessly surveyed and emergencies are simulated, whether in computer models, test facilities or large-scale disaster exercises. This observational documentary attentively follows the sometimes mysterious-looking activities and preparations to portray the human struggle against the forces of nature which are unstoppable despite precision technology.

Annina Wettstein



Awarded with a Golden Dove in the Next Masters Competition Long Documentary and Animated Film.

Next Masters Wettbewerb 2017
The Strange Sound of Happiness Diego Pascal Panarello

The Sicilian Diego, plagued by existential crises, is haunted by a vision: the image of a Jew’s harp. His search for the history of this instrument takes him into deepest Siberia.

The Strange Sound of Happiness

Documentary Film
Germany,
Italy
2017
89 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Edoardo Fracchia
Diego Pascal Panarello
Bartolomeo Sailer
Matteo Cocco
Enrica Gatto, Carmen Kirchweger
Alvise Renzini
Diego Pascal Panarello
Danilo Romancino, Michael Haesters, Sorin Apostol
After twenty years, the failed musician Diego returns to his Sicilian hometown of Augusta with no money, job or perspectives. In a dream he has a vision of a Jew’s harp, called Marranzano in Italian. The half vibrant, half buzzing sound of this small musical instrument echoes in the chant of the omnipresent cicadas – and in the sound of an electric shaver. After some initial research at the local souvenir shop, Diego soon finds himself in freezing Yakutia, where the Jew’s harp is called Khomus and considered a lucky charm. In Siberia Diego also meets the most famous Khomus player in the world, a generally respected blacksmith with a striking resemblance to the master from “The Karate Kid”, and learns about the rich mythology of the instrument. People say, for example, that one of the best Marranzani flew into space one night to be played by a Russian cosmonaut. Diego’s research on the universal history of the Jew’s harp merges with the story of his personal pursuit of happiness, while his journey is driven in equal measure by self-questioning, ethnographical interest and associative enthusiasm.

Esther Buss



Honorary Mention Next Masters Competition;
Nominated for Goethe-Institut Documentary Film Prize