72nd Internationales Filmfestival Mannheim-Heidelberg

16.11.2023 to 26.11.2023
Mannheim and Heidelberg

"Una sterminata domenica" (An Endless Sunday) by Alain Parroni (Italy, Germany 2023) has won the € 2.500 prize of the Ecumenical Jury at the Film Festival Mannheim-Heidelberg 2023. The prize money is donated by the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD) and the German Bishops' Conference (DBK). The International Newcomer Award, the festival's main prize for the best film in the competition, which is awarded by the International Jury and endowed with € 30.000, went to "In Flames" by Zarrar Khan (Pakistan, Canada 2023), while the Rainer Werner Fassbinder Award for the best screenplay, endowed with € 15.000, went to Nick Pinkerton for "The Sweet East" by Sean Price Williams (USA 2023). The Prize of the Jury of International Film Critics (Fipresci) was awarded to "Animal" (Greece, Austria, Romania, Cyprus, Bulgaria 2023) by Sophia Exarchou.

At the ecumenical reception of the churches, Dean Jung reminded the audience that church juries - a Protestant INTERFILM and a Catholic OCIC jury - first awarded prizes in Mannheim 60 years ago; back then, in 1963, the festival was still called Mannheim Film Week. Dean Hartmann emphasised films as a "school of empathy", which makes them significant for the churches. Festival director Sascha Keilholz emphasised the internationality and interculturality of the festival programme which is in accord with intentions of the churches' commitment to film. On behalf of INTERFILM and SIGNIS, INTERFILM board member Christian Engels spoke about the connection between film and politics, which is once again being observed with particular attention in view of the current global political situation.

The Mannheim-Heidelberg International Film Festival opened on 16 November with the film "Day of the Fight" by Jack Huston (USA, 2023). The International Competition "On the Rise" showed 16 films from which the Ecumenical Jury chose its prize winner. Other festival sections were "Pushing the Boundaries" with films that work on the boundaries of cinematic expression, as well as the retrospective dedicated to "Method Acting" in American cinema from the 1950s to the 1970s. The new section "Filmscapes" also opened the programme to essayistic, documentary and serial productions.

Link: Festival homepage


An Endless Sunday
Directed by:

Three teenagers on their own in a desperate search for affection embark on a wild trip through the Eternal City. The film is both a road movie and a coming-of-age story. The teenagers instinctively ask themselves the important questions about the meaning of life. Disorientation and frustration drive them to a real warning shot. Visual allusions to archaic biblical images give the film a multi-layered meaning. The birth in the final scene opens up new perspectives for the three of them.