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Entries in Germany (9)

Thursday
Feb062014

Meet the Berlinale Jury

The 64th Berlinale begins today in Germany - a press conference for Grand Budapest Hotel is streaming right now. It's the second of the six most powerful and premiere-heavy festivals each year, which schedule like so: Sundance -January; Berlin -February; Cannes - May; and the September glut of Venice, Telluride & Toronto. Like most of the biggies Berlinale has multiple juries for multiple types of awards, major and niche. But here's the main competition jury presided over by former Focus Features chief James Schamus. 

The Jury, The Competition Films, and Oscar History after the jump

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Aug202013

Germany @ The Oscars

Germany has a long and trivia-crazy history with the Oscars that didn’t just begin with Sandra Bullock speaking German in her Blind Side acceptance speech or Christoph Waltz, an Austrian-German talent winning two Tarantino-Flavored Oscars for multi-lingual performances. We’ll get to more trivia in a minute but first the German shortlist.  We await their choice for Oscar’s Foreign Language Film submission with curiousity because they’re always a threat for the eventual shortlist. Germany has received 18 nominations and 3 wins over the years. They’re weighing the quality of nine different pictures before deciding. Which will they send our way?

The finalists are…

  • MY BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY Michaela Kezele
    This one skews international - a romance between a young Serbian widow and an Albanian soldier 
  • THE GERMAN FRIEND Jeanine Meerapfel
    A coproduction with Argentina 
  • FREE FALL Stephan Lacant
    A gay romantic drama about two cops
  • THE GIRL WITH NINE WIGS Marc Rothemund
    I don't know what this one is about but I love the title 
  • OH BOY Jan Ole Gerster
    a popular comedy about a drop out university student 
  • RITTER ROST multiple directors
    an animated film 
  • SCHULD SIND IMMER DIE ANDEREN  Lars-Gunnar Lotz
    This one sounds interesting - a juvenile offender in an "open prison" discovers that his house-mother was one of his victims 
  • NOTHING BAD CAN HAPPEN von Katrin Gebbe (Junafilm)
    Also known as Tore Tanzt. Will this Cannes entry be too controversial for submission?  
  • TWO LIVES von Georg Maas & Judith Kaufman (DE/NO, Zinnober Film,  B&T Film)
    Also known as Zwei Leben. This film stars Liv Ullman of all people!!! It's about a woman (Juliane Köhler who starred in the German Oscar winner Nowhere in Africa), born to a Norwegian woman and a German soldier who becomes involved in war crime trials. 

It's worth noting that the acclaimed Hungarian German coproduction The Notebook which was suggested to be in the running by some outlets is being submitted by Hungary so it can't be the German submission.

Patrick, a German reader thinks that it would be a surprise if they passed on OH BOY which has been a major hit in Germany at the end of 2012. But since it’s a black and white contemporary film and youth sensation it’s no automatic draw when it comes to appealing to Oscar’s foreign language voters who are, it's important to remember, a volunteer group culled from all the branches. Anecdotally speaking, they skew even older than the typical Oscar demographic because they have to have a lot of free time to attend a least a couple dozen screenings from the long long submissions list (which is broken up into 3 sections so that each member doesn't have to watch all 60+ entries). For Germany, Oh Boy, is also facing the potential problem that The Hunt has for Denmark. It's not "new" anymore... so if the decision-makers have a fresh love...

I wouldn't be surprised if they went with Two Lives (trailer above) given Liv Ullman and Juliane Köhler's Oscar histories but the only director in the nine finalists that's previously been submitted is Marc Rothemund (The Girl With Nine Wigs). His film Sophie Scholl was an Oscar nominee in the 2005 race.

They'll announce their submission on August 27th. What do you think it will be? 

P.S. I promised some trivia so here we go...

a few German winners: Emil Jannings, Luise Rainer and Hans Zimmer

  • Germany's most frequently submitted director is (drum roll please) Wim Wenders who has been submitted only three times (The American Friend, Wings of Desire, and Pina). None of those famous films were nominated in this category. Wenders has better luck with the documentary branch where he's won two nominations (Pina, Buena Vista Social Club).  Several other directors are tied with two submissions each.
  • Germany holds two important "firsts" for the acting Oscars. The first actor ever handed an Oscar was Emil Jannings for The Way of All Flesh. Less than a decade later Luise Rainer became the first actor of either gender to win two Oscars. Since she did that in the late 30s Hollywood lied about Rainer's provenance and claimed she was from Austria.
  • The category that loves Germans most is Art Direction (31 nominations and 7 wins) but weirdly no German has been nominated there since 1972 when Cabaret took home the gold in that category. 
  • Hollywood's favorite German currently, if you subtract Christoph Waltz, is Hans Zimmer a frequent nominee for Best Original Score. [cue: loud Inception bwaaaaaaa  ♫ here]
  • The last German film to win the Oscar was The Lives of Others (2006), one of the most popular winners in this category in recent years.
Thursday
Apr252013

Reader Spotlight: Patrick in Germany

We're getting to know the Film Experience community one-by-one. This is going to take us forever! (That's a good thing. Thank you so much for being part of such a big vibrant fanbase.) Today we're talking to Patrick who lives in Germany and writes for DieAcademy.de, a German site devoted to our favorite awards show.

Hi, Patrick. How long have you been reading The Film Experience?

Maybe 6 years? I like this site so much since it's always interesting topics and wonderful to read.

I know you're really into the Oscars but how about the Lolas, Germany's own movie awards. Which German stars do you recommend our international readers get to know?

The Lolas are not as big of a deal as they should be, but I love some German actors who are still too unknown abroad but doing great work all the time, like: Sibel Kikelli (two time Lola winner for Gegen die Wand & Die Fremde), Susanne Lothar (a three time Lola nominee who died last year) and maybe the best young German actor of our generation August Diehl (who you've seen in Inglourious Basterds and Salt but he's been nominated for the Lola three times and won for "23"). It would be a great pleasure to read a post about any of them.

Two current German greats: August Diehl & Sibel Kekilli

Hey, surely you've noticed my love for Sibel Kekilli. So great every time (though it was weird to see her do that romantic comedy What a Man)

Yes I noticed that. I think she was the best of the cast in What a Man, too but not a good movie. But Head-On. What a performance!

Agreed. Name your three favorite movies in the following genres. Horror, Comedy, Drama, Musical and SciFi. Go...

Horror: The Exorzist, Psycho, Silence of the Lambs (if I put it into this genre)
Comedy: Some Like It Hot, Tootsie, Pillow Talk
Drama: The Godfather (1 & 2), American Beauty, All about Eve (if I could choose 5: Sunset Boulevard and The Hours)
Musical: West Side Story, Chicago, Moulin Rouge!
Sci-Fi: Alien & Aliens, Blade Runner, Terminator (1 & 2).

Do you care about a significant other's taste in movies?

The Answer ist YES! It sounds a bit overdone, but I have a problem with guys, who don't like Kate Winslet in general or have mainstream taste of movies and don't feel complex emotions. The movie that comes to mind is Brokeback Mountain. This movie is not about a gay couple, its about love and why two people can't be together because of external and internal circumstances. Heartbreaking! But I think some hearts are too cold to feel that and that is not what I am looking for. (I hope most readers will know what I mean?)

Patrick with his great love Kate Winslet

I understand you are kind of a lot obsessed with Kate Winslet. What other actors/actresses really grab you?

Julianne Moore. She's still so underappreciated it makes me burst me into tears. I also love Bette Davis, Thelma Ritter, Sean Penn, most of the work of Nicole Kidman and Michelle Williams, the 70s and 80s Work of Meryl Streep (but getting tired of her work after the brilliant Angels of America), Michael Fassbender, Ryan Gosling and many more.

Take an Oscar away. Regift it.

Only one? I love the Oscars, but wanna change so much, especially the Oscars for Kim Basinger & Catherine Zeta-Jones (both to Julianne Moore). The biggest fault from the last decade was the Oscar for Tom Hooper's Direction of The King´s Speech. TKS was good, but the direction was TV-Movie-Material I think and The Social Network is by miles superior! If Colin Firth had pick up Best Actor Oscar the Year before for his brilliant performance in A Single Man maybe he wouldn't have won Frontrunner Status and The Kings Speech wouldn't win Best Picture and Director??? When Kathryn Bigelow announced Hooper as the "winner" it was the only time I completely lost interest in the other awards for the evening; it STILL hurts!


Previous Reader Spotlights
And our imaginary Honorary Reader Oscars go to...
lovely ladies: Mysjkin, Lynn LeeEster, Leehee, Jamie and Dominique 
(and yes we need to hear from more of the girls) 
dashing gentsChristian, Lucio, Joey Moser, Zé Vozone, Tony T, Andy Hoglund, FerdiK.M. SoehnleinSergioBorja, John, Chris, Peter, Ziyad, Andrew, Yonatan, Keir, Kyle, Vinci, Victor, Bill, Hayden, Murtada, Cory, Walter, Paolo, and BBats

Sunday
Mar242013

Win Lola, Win. Germany's Oscars.

The nominations for Germany's Oscars, or "The Lolas" have been announced. Barbara, which didn't excite Oscar voters this past season, won the Lola last year. Which film will it be this year for Germany? Cloud Atlas won the most nominations, nine, which is quite a haul for a non German picture. But ⅓ of Cloud Atlas's directing body is named Tom Tykwer (Run Lola Run) so it's German enough.

Germany's Best Pictures this year. Will we see any at Oscar next year?

BEST PICTURE

  • CLOUD ATLAS (Lana Wachowski & Andy Wachowski & Tom Tykver)
  • HANNAH ARENDT (Margarethe von Trotta)
  • LORE (Cate Shortland, Australia's Oscar Submission)
  • OH BOY (Jan Ole-Gerster)
  • QUELLEN DES LEBENS (Oskar Roehler)
  • THE WALL (Julian Roman Polsler) 

Oscar submission chatter after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Feb062013

Cabaret Winners!

"Beedle dee, dee dee dee,
Two winners.
Beedle dee, dee dee dee,
And I'm the only man,
Ja!"

It's time to announce the winners of the Cabaret contest, pulled randomly from your entries which were doubled if you sent along a Cabaret inspired photo along with your note about your favorite moment in the 1972 masterpiece.

I had fun reading all of your opinions and even more fun watching the film again... though the strangest thing about seeing it on the big screen for the first time after a lifetime spent watching it on various sizes of screens at home was that it suddenly seemed to have less musical numbers. Minnelli's peak razzle dazzle and Joel Grey's indeligible emcee suck up all the oxygen in terms of memories of the movie but there is so much more to the movie which is a really brilliant and disturbing drama about a world(s) about to collapse, specifically Weimar Era Germany (and its funhouse mirror in the Kit Kat Club).

Anyway... I asked you to either "like" the film experience facebook page and tell us your favorite bit of Cabaret or do the same thing by email with a "photo" inspired by Cabaret to win yourself an extra contest entry. The winners of the remastered restored and booklet-beautiful 40th anniversary blu-ray, chosen randomly are:

JOSHUA FLOWER who writes:

My favorite moment comes right at the top - the opening shot that pulls back off the reflection of Joel Grey as he turns to the camera/audience and starts singing "Vilkommen." It might be my favorite opening shot, period. The precision and energy of the camerawork, the hall of mirrors distortion of the reflection, in contrast to the reality, which is kind of garish and severe, combined with the music, which is peppy and weirdly melancholy at the same time... That one shot has always felt like a perfect little encapsulation of the movie as a whole, somehow.

KATE IMY who sent a photo of herself performing "Money Money Money" - how cool is that? She writes:

...a too-literal entry into your "inspired" photo challenge. These are from when a friend and I sang the song "Money Money" in our high school Broadway review style show "Knights on Broadway." Thankfully they hide the fact that I was/am an atrocious singer. My friend with the fantastic makeup was actually quite good. So for purely selfish and awkwardly self-promotional reasons "Money Money" has a special place for me in the movie. Especially the "When you haven't any coal in the stove..." bit. So hard to do but so exciting to watch when it's done well (in the movie). 

CONGRATULATIONS TO JOSHUA & KATE!

After the jump, I thought you might enjoy a few more losing but great contest entries from readers. I'm sorry I didn't have dozens of blu-rays to give away but you all won my heart and that has to count for something!

Click to read more ...