Film Archive

Sections (Film Archive)

Jahr

Late Harvest
Campo Tiago Hespanha

Surrounded by the Arcadian-looking landscape of Europe’s biggest military base on the outskirts of Lisbon, sheep and bees meet ornithologists and soldiers training for combat.

Campo

Documentary Film
Portugal
2019
101 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
João Matos
Tiago Hespanha
Tiago Hespanha, Rui Xavier, Luísa Homem, Cláudia Varejão, Paulo Menezes
Francisco Moreira, Tiago Hespanha
Eva Boliño, Adriana Bolito, Giorgio Gristina, Tiago Melo Bento
Europe’s biggest military base is situated on the outskirts of Lisbon. Soldiers following fictitious scenarios train for a future war, the neighbours hear the impact of the guns at night, a boy plays the piano. Soldiers and amateur astronomers watch through the night on their missions, ornithologists lie in wait for the mating calls of rare birds, snipers for enemies and targets. Beekeepers look after their bees, a shepherd helps a ewe giving birth: Arcadian-looking landscapes with deer and grazing sheep in the morning mist meet a modern field of Mars (“campo de marte”), as military training grounds were called in ancient Rome.

This film doesn’t hurry its observations, listening to the tales of the people as well as to the sound of the piano composition “Battle in the Stars”, inspired by the war games. It listens to the sheep, the birds, and the bees. This generates a simultaneousness – and equality – of violence, nature, people, the historic and future layers, the material and the transcendental.

Frederik Lang

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
Ceremony Phil Collins

What does Manchester in 2017 have in common with the Russian revolution? Friedrich Engels. His theories form the starting point for reflections on the state of contemporary Great Britain.

Ceremony

Documentary Film
Germany,
Ukraine,
UK
2018
67 minutes
subtitles: 
English
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Siniša Mitrović, Natasha Dack Ojumu
Phil Collins
Mica Levi, Demdike Stare, Gruff Rhys
Neus Ollé-Soronellas, Joseph Briffa, Jonathan Stow, Alex Large, David Bewick, Pedro Labanca, Federico Funari, Phil Collins, Siniša Mitrović, Matthias Schellenberg
David Charap, Andreas Dalström
Phil Collins
Jochen Jezussek
What do 2017 Manchester and the Russian Revolution 100 years earlier have in common? Friedrich Engels. Before he wrote the Communist Manifesto with Karl Marx, the philosopher and entrepreneur had lived for a few years in the northern English industrial capital of the 19th century. Taking Engels’ communist theories as a starting point, the artist Phil Collins reflects on their topicality: What is the “condition of the working class in England” – the title of one of his main works – today? Wouldn’t Engels be more likely to write about the “working poor”? What are the differences between the past and present “tyranny of capital”, which still seems to have our societies, our life, thinking and actions firmly in its grip? Is that why communism has become a conceivable ideal again?

And Engels himself, too, gets to return to Manchester, in the shape of a statue whose transport from a Ukrainian village to its new home in the former industrial capital of the world the film follows – a many-layered socialist road movie from one of the outer edges of the EU to the (soon to be) other.

Frederik Lang

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
Honeyland Tamara Kotevska, Ljubomir Stefanov

A bee whisperer in the Macedonian mountain idyll, from whose strenuous everyday life she sometimes flees. A condensed, intense drama that is much more than just a portrait.

Honeyland

Documentary Film
North Macedonia
2019
86 minutes
subtitles: 
English
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Atanas Georgiev
Tamara Kotevska, Ljubomir Stefanov
Foltin
Fejmi Daut, Samir Ljuma
Atanas Georgiev
Tamara Kotevska, Ljubomir Stefanov
Rana Eid
Hatidze is not alone. She has her bees. And she nurses her sick, bedridden mother. Every now and then she packs her jars of honey and homemade baskets and goes to the market in the capital, where she flirts with the sellers, treats herself to a hair dye and enjoys escaping the loneliness of her Macedonian mountain idyll for a moment: being, for a short while, nothing but a single woman around fifty, free from all her routine burdens and ready to enjoy life. In her remote, barren mountain village she hardly has time for this, because there she is devotedly breeding bee colonies in crevices. As a bee whisperer, she sings old folksongs to her charges, needs no head or hand protection and takes only the honey she is entitled to, leaving the rest to the bees. They are her family. But when a nomad clan with seven kids and 150 cows suddenly settles on the neighbouring property, her lonely idyll is in danger of being shattered.

The two directors Ljubomir Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska have condensed roughly 400 hours of film material in a poetic, intense drama that is much more than just the portrait of a beekeeper. Between observation and metaphor, they follow Hatidze through ups and downs. In her world it’s the bees that decide who will be allowed to stay in the end.

Julia Weigl

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
Marona’s Fantastic Tale Anca Damian

Marona-Sara-Ana-the-Ninth is of noble descent, but not a princess. She was given her names by her master and mistress. The modern fairytale about a dog raises questions of identity.

Marona’s Fantastic Tale

Animated Film
Belgium,
France,
Romania
2019
92 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Anca Damian
Anca Damian
Pablo Pico
Brecht Evens, Gina Thorstensen, Sarah Mazetti
Boubkar Benzabat
Dan Panaitescu, Chloé Roux, Hefang Wei, Mathieu Labaye, Claudia Ilea
Anghel Damian
Clément Badin
Marona-Sara-Ana-the-Ninth may be of noble descent from her father’s side, graceful and beautiful, but she is no princess. She braves many an adventure in her short life: She learns acrobatics and magic tricks, temporarily ends up on the streets and even becomes a saviour in need. She is a bitch. Her names were given to her by a number of masters and mistresses. Anca Damian tells a touching story with imagination and humour.

An original, surrealist and childlike aesthetics, the combination of different animation techniques, strong stylisation and the gay colour palette make the protagonists particularly expressive. The striking backgrounds resemble witty and artistic wimmelbook pictures. The unusual angles make us discover the urban hustle and bustle from many perspectives simultaneously – with all senses. At the heart of the film, a realistic and critical portrait of urban society emerges that does not shy away from questioning our relationship to animals and thus to our values. Joy and sadness, farewells and beginnings are mutually dependent – even death is sensitively addressed. Damian’s modern fairytale is about identity and belonging. Full of musical and visual poetry and philosophical esprit, it celebrates – equally simply and extravagantly – the complexity of existence and the simplicity of happiness.

Nadja Rademacher

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
Nomad: In the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin Werner Herzog

Once again, Werner Herzog goes on a journey to make an intimate film not only about a friend but about himself – a curious dreamer and indefatigable nomad.

Nomad: In the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin

Documentary Film
UK
2019
85 minutes
subtitles: 
English
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Lucki Stipetić, Steve O’Hagan
Werner Herzog
Louis Caulfield, Mike Paterson
Marco Capalbo
Werner Herzog
Bruce Chatwin and Werner Herzog are brothers in spirit. One of them a legendary writer, the other a legendary filmmaker, two stubborn men. Both loved and still love adventures, especially hiking. Or, as Herzog likes to describe his obsession for long walks: “The world reveals itself to those who travel on foot.”

Chatwin died of AIDS in 1989. His filmmaking friend visited him shortly before he died to say farewell. It took thirty years before the German dedicated a very personal documentary portrait to the Brit. He follows in Chatwin’s footsteps, travelling – in his familiar casual and exploratory way – to the locales of the writer’s work, always carrying the old chestnut-brown leather backpack Chatwin gave him as a parting gift. He goes to the end of the world to South America to follow his friend’s impressive book “In Patagonia”, to the Australian outback to learn about the Aborigine song traditions that inspired Chatwin’s “Songlines”, and finally to the writer’s foggy homeland of Wales. Once more Werner Herzog sets out on a journey to ultimately realise an intimate film not only about a companion but most of all about himself – a curious dreamer and indefatigable nomad.

Julia Weigl

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
That Which Does Not Kill Alexe Poukine

An unagitated, performative stocktaking of the subject of rape. Alexe Poukine recovers the offence from the dark zone and lets victims and perpetrators speak.

That Which Does Not Kill

Documentary Film
Belgium,
France
2019
85 minutes
subtitles: 
English
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Cyril Bibas (CVB), Cécile Lestrade, Elise Hug (Alter Ego)
Alexe Poukine
Elin Kirschfink
Agnès Bruckert
Ada Leiris
Bruno Schweisguth
Conchita Paz, Epona Guillaume, Aurore Fattier, Marijke Pinoy, Marie Préchac, Sophie Sénécaut, Anne Jacob, Tristan Lamour, Noémie Boes, Maxime Maes, Yves-Marina Gnahoua, Tiphaine Gentilleau, Séverine Degilhage, Laurence Rosier
It’s well-established that the majority of sexualised violence doesn’t take place in the public sphere but in the seemingly protected realm of family, partnership and friends. This is also true of a young woman who was raped by a good friend on a private date. Her report was the occasion and basis of this film which interprets it first performatively, then analytically by women and men playing various roles.

In addition to the act itself, it addresses its consequences and how to deal with feelings of guilt, shame, paralysis and repression – but soon the performers’ own experiences as victims of perpetrators, too. In its directness and detail, speaking out is sometimes agonising for all participants. But talking and listening are the only chance to get hold of the phantoms and demons of the past and thus heal the wounds. Alexe Poukine’s differentiated and multi-faceted approach to an issue usually discussed in sensationalist terms offers us, the audience, a chance to dispassionately re-adjust our perspective on the act of rape.

Silvia Hallensleben

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
The Wind. A Documentary Thriller Michał Bielawski

The wind, the wind, the heavenly child: a character study of a landscape and an exceptional case of regional climate which blows through Polish forests, organisms and souls.

The Wind. A Documentary Thriller

Documentary Film
Poland,
Slovakia
2019
75 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Maciej Kubicki
Michał Bielawski
Bartłomiej Solik
Hubert Pusek
Michał Bielawski
When the Halny rises in the High Tatras in the south of Poland, the number of emergency calls spikes. The Halny is a wind that makes people nervous, stresses them and intensifies their crises. In his “documentary thriller”, Michał Bielawski tells the story of a force of nature and of the people who have to live with the wind.

Nothing is harder to calculate than the weather, because it has a different effect on every organism and every soul. Bielawski approaches his weather report from the two endpoints of the axis of events: In impressive panoramic shots, he shows how the Halny is created by thick clouds rolling down from the mountains into the narrow valleys. He also shows how the people have adapted to the upheavals and occasional bigger or smaller natural disasters. A particularly impressive protagonist even seems to identify with this unique regional world: Teresa hugs the trees; she wants to have a spot of her own in the protected forest. She becomes the embodiment of a landscape of which Michał Bielawski, with his images and a strong, atmospheric soundtrack, has created almost a character study.

Bert Rebhandl



Awarded with the MDR Film Prize.

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
The Young Observant Davide Maldi

Luca is supposed to become a hotel clerk, though he is actually a shy, rebellious teenager. An intimate coming-of-age story in carefully arranged vintage images.

The Young Observant

Documentary Film
Italy
2019
85 minutes
subtitles: 
English
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Gabriella Manfrè, Davide Maldi, Micol Roubini, Fabio Scamone
Davide Maldi
Freddy Murphy, Chiara Lee
Davide Maldi
Enrica Gatto
Davide Maldi, Micol Roubini
Stefano Grosso, Marzia Cordò, Giancarlo Rutigliano
To become a hotel clerk you need one thing above all else: discipline. Of course that’s not so easy for an adolescent. Shy, fourteen-year-old Luca finds it especially difficult. He can neither stand still nor wants to have his shaggy red hair cut. He’d rather flirt with his teacher during French lessons or go hunting in the lonely forest. He’s bored by the equally renowned and stuffy hotel management school, whose perpetual routines get on his nerves: folding napkins, polishing glasses, listening. The problem, though, is that his family have great expectations of him.

Having grown up in a tiny Alpine mountain village, the boy of course knows how his way around the cows on the farm back home. The surrounding forests were his territory where he could let off steam. Now school is supposed to tame him, teach him self-discipline and ultimately help him find a decent job. In restful vintage images the Italian director Davide Maldi illustrates the tight corset of a training institution that seems to have fallen out of time. Antique wooden furniture, lemon-yellow walls, young gentlemen in black waistcoats and buttoned-up white shirts. They provide the costumes and setting of an intimate coming-of-age story which revolves around a sacrifice: Must Luca give up his free spirit to become “something”?

Julia Weigl

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Tiny Souls

Documentary Film
France,
Jordan,
Lebanon,
Qatar
2019
85 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Dina Naser
Dina Naser
Ronald Heu
Dina Naser, Hasan Abu Hammad
Najwa Khachimi, Qutaiba Barhamji
Dina Naser
Antonin Dalmasso
They and all the others will continue to inspire life, Dina Naser writes at the end of her film about three children of war in Syria. They grow up in a refugee camp in Jordan: Marwa is the eldest, then there’s her sister Ayah and finally Mahmoud, the youngest. They have seven other siblings, but the family was torn apart when one brother in Syria no longer wanted to serve in the army and thus the dictator Assad. Marwa is the heroine of the film. She will soon be grown-up or at least considered almost of marriageable age by her parents. Her mother and father now make sure she doesn’t go out any more. But she already has a boyfriend.

Dina Naser follows the three children’s fate and everyday life over an extended period of time, starting in 2014. The filmmaker even hands the camera temporarily over to her protagonists – for the time when she can’t be with them. This can and should be compared to the situation of Palestinian refugees in 1948, among them Dina Naser’s father, whose experiences are referenced by the director. This opens up a larger context for this story which is profoundly and universally human but at the same time linked closely to the complicated Syria and Middle East conflict by its wealth of detail.

Bert Rebhandl

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
Where We Belong Jacqueline Zünd

Analytically and eloquently, five children of separated couples talk about the questions and gaps left by their parents. It’s up to them and us to decide what normality means.

Where We Belong

Documentary Film
Switzerland
2019
78 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Jacqueline Zünd, Stefan Jung
Jacqueline Zünd
Thomas Kuratli
Nikolai von Graevenitz
Gion-Reto Killias
Jacqueline Zünd
Marco Teufen, Reto Stamm, Benoit Barraud
Parents separate, the children are left with questions and gaps: Dad cheated on Mom, so she threw him out. But didn’t Mom cheat on Dad, too? Life now happens between two homes, between two worlds. After an argument, the mother leaves for a “holiday” that is still going on a year later. It’s never mentioned. Brother and sister end up in a home after they tried to leave their mother. Their father had badmouthed her to them again and again. Taking the children, though, doesn’t cross his mind.

Coping with such experiences makes you grow up early. Surprisingly analytically and eloquently, five children of separated parents talk about their stories, only to turn back into children the next moment. With atmospheric images, sometimes impressionist and experimental, sometimes perfectly lighted like the stars on the big screen they become for a short while, the director manages to transcend the everyday life her protagonists talk about: By now, they probably know where they belong better than all the adults around them. It’s up to them and us to find out what normality means. Best to do it all on their own.

Frederik Lang



Awarded with the Young Eyes Film Award.

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Late Harvest
#Female Pleasure Barbara Miller

Misogyny is structurally inscribed in the cultural cores of all social systems in the world. “#Female Pleasure” exposes these cores, lucidly and from a global perspective.

#Female Pleasure

Documentary Film
Germany,
Switzerland
2018
97 minutes
subtitles: 
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Philip Delaquis, Arek Gielnik
Barbara Miller
Peter Scherer
Anne Misselwitz, Gabriela Betschart, Akiba Jiro
Isabel Meier
Barbara Miller
Tom Weber
Women are subordinate to men. They are born sinful and have no legal claim to their own body. Misogyny is more than a phenomenon observed across continental divides all over the world and in some cases the cause of abuse and crime. It is structurally inscribed – literally – into the core of all social systems founded on religious beliefs. In the bible, for example, we read: “I find woman more bitter than Death […] The man who is pleasing to God eludes her.”

In this lucid film, which takes a global perspective, five female protagonists talk about misogynistic behaviour they experienced, hostilities they were exposed to, crimes committed against them. Rokudenashiko, a Japanese artist, is on trial for the obscenity of her art. Deborah Feldman escaped with her son from a Hassidic community in Brooklyn, leaving her husband to whom she was forcibly married. Leyla Hussein, Doris Wagner and Vithika Yadav talk about rape and mutilation, lack of legal protection, homophobia, shame and the strange feeling that one’s sexuality and body are associated with sin from birth.

Lukas Stern



Awarded with the Special Prize of the Interreligious Jury

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Aquarela

Documentary Film
Denmark,
Germany,
UK
2018
90 minutes
subtitles: 
English
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Aimara Reques, Heino Deckert, Sigrid Dyekjær
Victor Kossakovsky
Eicca Toppinen
Victor Kossakovsky, Ben Bernhard
Victor Kossakovsky, Molly Malene Stensgaard, Ainara Vera
Victor Kossakovsky, Aimara Reques
Alexander Dudarev
A film about water. Beauty, power and threat are mingled in Victor Kossakovsky’s latest work: the peace of the ice on Lake Baikal is treacherous. Under the surface it’s bubbling, melting – much earlier than usual. So a group of rescue workers is kept busy, pulling car after car from the frozen masses and recovering the drivers.

Icebergs are sinking in the sea here, storms drive torrents of rain aground in Florida, whole oceans are crashing down the Salto Ángel in Venezuela. 40 years after his debut as a filmmaker, 30 years after he graduated from the Higher Courses of Film Writers and Directors in Moscow and about seven years after his documentary “Vivan Las Antipodas!”, which measured the globe in geographical opposites, Victor Kossakovsky has produced another film that makes the landscapes of the world its protagonists. “Aquarela” shows bodies of water all over the world, in all their manifestations, in all their changing aggregate states caused by comparatively tiny differences in temperature. The camera maps on boats, dives under the surfaces, rises in the air to capture the expanse of space. Kossakovsky composes a visual symphony of primeval powers set to Heavy Metal music. The powerful images provoke awe, wonder flows from the screen like sea spray.

Fabian Tietke

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Putin’s Witnesses

Documentary Film
Czech Republic,
Latvia,
Switzerland
2018
107 minutes
subtitles: 
English
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Natalya Manskaya, Gabriela Bussmann, Vít Klusák, Filip Remunda
Vitaly Mansky
Kārlis Auzāns
Gunta Ikere
Vitaly Mansky
Anrijs Krenbergs
“The state is like a garden,” says Putin’s old form teacher’s husband, “you have to destroy the weed so that something worthwhile grows.” “We’ll do just that,” the lifetime president-to-be answers almost shyly and leaves his teacher’s flat, which he visited to shoot an advertising clip directed by Vitaly Mansky who, as the country’s leading documentary filmmaker, was allowed to follow and record the campaign. After 18 years of concrete rule by the little man with the strong hands, the long-emigrated director looks back at the fateful year of 2000 and reviews his footage. What he discovers is breathtaking and has the emotionalising power of an almost intimate home video. The Mansky family already dread the new Mao while Yeltsin’s clan is jubilant at first and ex-Tsar Boris even sees his successor Vladimir as the guarantee of real media freedom –later he disgustedly calls the pivotal turn-back “krasnenko” (reddish). Putin himself talks about reasons of state and an autocratic life which he intends to avoid at all costs. Finally, the question whether it was right to reanimate the old Soviet hymn with quasi new lyrics becomes a bone of contention in the duel Putin vs. Mansky. The sad conclusion is that nobody was just a “witness”. Everybody played a part in the many compromises made in hopes of a “better life.”

Barbara Wurm

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Touch Me Not

Documentary Film
Bulgaria,
Czech Republic,
France,
Germany,
Romania
2018
123 minutes
subtitles: 
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Bianca Oana, Philippe Avril, Adina Pintilie
Adina Pintilie
Ivo Paunov
George Chiper-Lillemark
Adina Pintilie
Adina Pintilie
Veselin Zografov, Dominik Dolejší, Marek Poledna
The Einstürzende Neubauten are playing “Mela-Mela-Melancholia”, questioning the state of the nation. Between the somnambulistic scenes played out in the border area between documentary and fiction, deep-seated intimacies that concern us all are addressed. The project – the winner of this year’s Golden Bear – is experimental: many of the protagonists are “real”, play themselves; others, like Laura Benson and her fellow actor Tómas Lemarquis, pick up on scripted sketches but let their roles come so close that they penetrate their own lives. They talk about and perform sex, about inhibitions and visions, fears and ways to overcome them. Their goal, the goal of this unusual film: (self) liberation.

The director enters the frame occasionally, sits on the couch with Christian Bayerlein, the “kissability” blogger, or with the transsexual Hanna Hofmann, letting us know that she is taking part, looking at things but resisting voyeurism as the camera floats above a group BDSM session or follows a touch therapy workshop, some of whose participants are physically severely disabled, at close range. She speaks, too, about her own boundaries of shame, far removed from the “Likes”-obsessed narcissistic Social Media egos. A transgressive critique of norms, aesthetically and politically correct (which is a good thing). And extremely bold into the bargain.

Barbara Wurm

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.