Many of us struggle with some kind of disability – whether physical or mental. On Body and Soul is a touching and twisted love story set in a slaughterhouse. The souls of the main characters seem to be connected but they struggle to come close physically. Ildikó Enyedi creates a tender visual story, activating our senses, while raising questions about our connection to each other. The film shows ways we can overcome our incomplete natures and connect with other physical beings.
67th International Film Festival Berlin
Ildikó Enyedi's "On Body and Soul" is the winner of the Berlinale 2017. The film not only carried off the Golden Bear but also the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury, in addition to the Prize of the International Film Critics Association Fipresci. In the Forum, the Ecumenical Jury gave its Prize to "Madame Colonnel" by Dieudo Hamadi, in the Panorama it awarded "Investigating Paradise" by Merzak Allouache. Commendations went to "A Fantastic Woman" by Sebastián Lelio (Competition), to "I Am Not Your Negro" by Raoul Peck (Panorama), and to "El mar la mar" by Joshua Bonnetta and J.P. Sniadecki (Forum).
The International Jury headed by Paul Verhoeven awarded Silver Bears to "Felicité" by Alain Gomis (Grand Jury Prize), to "Pokot" by Agnieszka Holland (Alfred Bauer Prize), and to "The Other Side of Hope" by Aki Kaurismäki (Best Director). Another Silver Bear for Best Screenplay went to Sebastián Lelio and Gonzalo Maza for "A Fantastic Woman".
"Django", directed by Etienne Comar, a debut film about the French jazz legend Django Reinhardt, opened the 67th Berlinale on January 9. In the international competition 18 films rivaled for the awards. The International Competition screened three German entries: "Return to Montauk" by Volker Schloendorff, "Beuys" by Andres Veiel, and "Bright Nights" by Thomas Arslan whose leading actor won a Silver Bear. As Berlinale Special Gala the festival programmed another Raoul Peck film, his biopic "The Young Karl Marx".
This film is a moving story about a transgender woman in Chile. Despite social ostracism and personal humiliation, Marina continues to fight for her rights while maintaining her dignity. Refusing to only be identified by her sex, she struggles to have the freedom to live up to her full potential.
A young female Algerian journalist is investigating various Islamic accounts of paradise. This project shows the power of theological concepts and the influences they have on daily life, as well as displaying some of the fragmentations and diversities of Islamic religion. Merzak Allouache's film warns against the danger of interpreting paradise into a commodity where the cost is the life of young men and women.
Set in the historical context of the United States civil rights movement in the 1950s and ‘60s, and through the words of James Baldwin, this documentary continues to be relevant today, triggering universal issues of justice and human rights.
Honorine Munyole heads up a special unit of the Congolese police dedicated to helping women and children who have suffered from physical and sexual abuse. An everyday hero, Maman Colonelle, as she is known, brings her mission to Kisangani, offering strength, courage, and healing. Filmmaker Dieudo Hamadi gets close to his subject, points to the traumatic aftermath of violence, and then shows the potential, if not for a utopia, at least for a reconstructed community of survivors where hope may emerge.
Being lost in the desert transforms into being lost in the cinema. The senses struggle to adjust, becoming attuned and opened to the sights and sounds of the vast, sometimes mystical space. Joshua Bonnetta and J.P. Sniadecki's film teaches viewers to read the signs of the desert by reading signs of the film. We discover an indifferent place, as stories of migrants crossing the border from Mexico into the U.S. face an unforgiving landscape. A fierce but enriching experience.