Five dffb films will be receiving prizes at the 12th achtung berlin – new berlin film award ceremony. In total eight dffb productions screened at the festival, participating in the Competition in the following sections short film, medium-length film, documentary, feature-length film.
An overview of the awards:
The new berlin film award in the Best Director category which comes with a voucher for leasing digital camera technology worth 2,000 €
Statement from the Feature-length Film Jury:
“The aftershocks of the great earthquake that hit Lisbon in 1755 reappear in the form of waves of rage and jealousy when a German doctor follows his lover to Portugal, uninvited. For the attentiveness of his visual language and his insistence in depicting jealousy in an unpopular form, the prize for Best Director is awarded to Jonas Rothlaender for FADO.”
The new berlin film award in the Best Short Film category which comes with a 1.000 € cash prize.
Directed by: Süheyla Schwenk
Statement from the Short Film Jury:
“Fate has struck 20-year-old Meral a hard blow. She suffers from a disease that paralyses her from the neck down. That is the point of departure for the film MERAL, KIZIM. If you think you’re up for a heavy drama riddled with hopelessness, you are way off the mark. Director and screenwriter Süheyla Schwenk has decided not to turn Meral into a victim but to portray her as a life-affirming young woman who still has plenty of plans for her life, even though she harbours no illusions that her physical condition will ever improve. That realisation puts her miles ahead of those around her. For neither her very conservative Turkish parents nor her German flatmates want to face the fact that Meral will be paraplegic for the rest of her life..
Ironically, she therefore constantly finds herself consoling others rather than herself. Despite being utterly dependent, that makes Meral far and away the strongest of them all.
We were particularly touched by the scenes between Meral and her very much younger sister Asiye, who seems to be the only one that accepts her the way that she is. Whether they’re messing around or snuggling up, Asiye enjoys spending time with her older sister just as much as she did before she was paralysed. MERAL, KIZIM is a very affectionate and courageous story, in the signature style not of a film school but of a self-assured filmmaker.”
The Exberliner Film Award
Awarded along with a voucher for one day at smallville.berlin studio, worth 1,200 €, to an outstanding film from any section that promotes interculturalism in Berlin or is made by a filmmaker with an international background.
Director: Jonas Rothlaender
Statement from the Exberliner Jury:
“The Exberliner Film Award, sponsored by Art-On-The-Run Film School Berlin, recognises an outstanding film reflecting the international dimension of Berlin as a Weltstadt, dealing with topical matters or expats. This year, Exberliner is proud to award the prize to Jonas Rothlaender for FADO, a film which not only deals with engulfing jealousy in relationships, but also tackles a foreign perspective on a new city.”
An Honourable Mention from the Exberliner Jury for:
Director: Katharina Rivilis
Statement from the Exberliner Jury:
“Exberliner would also like to give an Honourable Mention to ARIANA FOREVER!, the Kurzfilm debut by dffb alumna Katharina Rivilis; the director’s striking film about an important topic is a true standout of the festival.”
An Honourable Mention from the Medium-length/Short Film Jury for:
IRGENDWO ANDERS/SOMEWHERE ELSE
Director: Borbála Nagy
Statement from the Medium-length/Short Film Jury:
“An honourable mention goes to director Borbála Nagy and her film IRGENDWO ANDERS/SOMEWHERE ELSE. The film very delicately delves into a childhood universe and lets audiences see the world through the eyes of a small boy. He dreams up his own fantasy realm in which he also experiences the first meeting between his mother and the father he has never met, as well as their subsequent relationship. Thanks to an unconventional narrative structure, the poetic staging, beautiful images and an open-ended dramaturgical form, Borbála Nagy and her team allow us to participate in their game of memory and superimposed layers as if we ourselves had once again established contact with our long-gone childhood.”
The Ecumenical Jury and the Documentary Jury awarded an Honourable Mention to: :
ARLETTE. MUT IST EIN MUSKEL/ARLETTE. COURAGE IS A MUSCLE
Director: Florian Hoffmann
Statement from the Ecumenical Jury:
“ARLETTE. MUT IST EIN MUSKEL/ARLETTE. COURAGE IS A MUSCLE is a documentary that really gets under your skin. After years with a stiff, painful leg, an operation in a foreign country proves to be the real challenge for this cheery girl. The camera observes everyday life in the clinic from very close-up, all the while remaining sensitive and calm. Looking through the eyes of this African girl, in the throes of puberty, in the midst of a foreign culture, we also find ourselves looking at our society in a new way. At the same time director Florian Hoffmann shows us how home and family give us the resilience to face an uncertain future.”