Berlin film festival 2011: cafebabel picks for the Golden Bear

Article published on Feb. 19, 2011
community published
Article published on Feb. 19, 2011
So that's it, another Berlin film festival over. No more of that Ukranian journalist always asking the 'Is Moscow behind it' question or the Canadian journalist asking the politically incorrect question ('why is Germany so guilty?!') at the daily press conferences. Stalwarts as they are. No more Berlin FLUfestival.

No more Berlin red carpet gossip, or film-opinion sharing with random strangers around you.

But wait, every film seems to have won an award already...?

In any case, tonight at 7pm the awards are presented, and by taste, Berlin thinks the gongs should go in this order:

1. - Nader and Simin by Asghar Farhadi. 'He won a silver bear in 2009 and's German reviews suggest he is in with a chance again. Britain's The Guardian thinks so too, alongside Bela Tarr's The Turin Horse' (Sandra Wickert)

2. The Future by US director Miranda July, 'who swooped in on Berlin amidst a load of Sundance hype. Talking cats, advice-giving moons and crawling t-shirts are good elements to ask the really important questions of life: 'What are we doing and where does this all go?'' (Christiane Loetsch)

3. Coriolanus by Ralph Fiennes. 'Look I'm British and biased but the Fiennes-Redgrave performance has been ringing in my head ever since I watched the film, and it's so relevant with all the mass protests and anarchy raging amidst the world's citizens.' Read the review on cafebabel Berlin here (Nabeelah Shabbir)

4. Pina by Wim Wenders. 'I managed this year to see all films out of competition: Almanya, Pina, Mein Bester Feind, Les femmes du 6e étage, True Grit and Unknown. So I can say, that none of these films will win the golden bear. It's a pity, Pina should win something! I hope that the It's-so-boring-in-California-that-I'm-making-a-film-about-it The Future won't win anything. The film debut from Ralph Fiennes Coriolanus has a chance. And a price for the Iranian film Nader and Simin would be a strong political signal' (Sebastien Vannier)

5. 'The Gael Garcia Bernal vehicle Even The Rain (Tambien La Lluvia), by Iciar Bollain won this year's panorama award; that's the section where the more arty, independent films show. I loved Pina by Wim Wenders, because it gives you a really new perspective on ballet filmed in the woods and urban industrial places in 3D - you can almost smell the sweat of the stars. Otherwise, from the competition 2011 didn't have so much to offer. I'd vote for Coriolanus, it was heavy stuff. It could be Egypt or Libya: Ralph Fiennes and Vanessa Redgrave are very convincing, and a good compensation would be best actor if this doesn't win the Golden Bear' (Ole Skambraks)

6. 'If Not Us, Who ('Wer Wenn Nicht Wir') brilliantly shows the burden of one whole generation being the offspring of the Nazis. Self-hate and catharsis in a film constantly filled with narrative tension. Very good actors in August Diehl (as Bernward Vesper) and Lena Lauzemis (as Gudrun Ensslin). Better than the Baader Meinhof Complex! Debut feature on sixties terrorism in Germany from Andres Veiel.' Read the review in German on cafebabel Berlin here (Sergio Marx)

Some of the other films competing for the Golden Bear award in Berlin on 19 February, in the main 'corners'


- Margin Call, JC Chandor. Think bankers Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons, Demi Moore and Paul Bettany equally climbing walls on the night of the 2008 wall street economic crisis. Fun and depressing for the real life element but certainly no cigar

- Yelling To The Sky, Victoria Mahoney. Two words: Zoe Kravitz (three more: daughter of Lenny)


- A Mysterious World by Argentinian director Rodrigo Moreno. Read the review in German


- Sleeping Sickness by Ulrich Koehler. Read the review in German here