By Indiewire | Indiewire January 19, 1999 at 2:00AM
Leaks of Berlin Line-Up
By Anthony Kaufman
The program for the 49th Berlin International Film Festival, running
Feb. 10-21, is beginning to take shape. Opening the massive
fest/market/showcase on February 10th is competition entry, "Aimee und
Jaguar" (Aimee and Jaguar) German director Max Farberbock's tragic
lesbian love story set in WW II Berlin. Also vying for the Golden and
Silver Bear is "Nachtgestalten" (Nightshapes) by Andreas Dresen, "an
odyssey of diverse figures in the labyrinth of the big city," Hong Kong
filmmaker Ann Hui's (Silver Bear for "Summer Snow" in 1995) "Ordinary
Heroes" and another Asian world premiere, "Naked Law" by Japanese
director Yoshimitsu Morita.
Variety reported yesterday that John Madden's "Shakespeare in Love" will
screen in competition, as will UK director Ben Hopkin's "Simon Magus."
Other films bound for the competition section, according to the trade,
include: the Holocaust documentary "The Last Days," directed by John
Moll, Nikita Milkhalkov's "Barber of Siberia," Stephen Frear's "Hi-Lo
Country" and David Cronenberg's "eXistenZ." Variety predicted other
Competition spots going to Terrence Malick's "The Thin Red Line,"
Bertrand Tavernier's "Ca Commence aujourd'hui" (It Starts Today), Claude
Chabrol's "Au Couer du mesonge," (At the Heart of the Lie, a.k.a. The
Color of Lies), Fernando Trueba's "The Girl of My Dreams," Joel
Schumacher's "8 MM," Tony Bui's Sundance Competition entry, "Three
Seasons," and Robert Altman's Sundance opener, "Cookie's Fortune."
In the non-competive Panorama section, four German films have been
announced: Peter Sempel's documentary "Nina Hagen - Punk & Glory,"
Monika Treut's documentary "Gendernauts," Turkish director Kutlug
Ataman's "Lola + Bilidikid," and Oskar Roehler's "Gierig" (Avid); and
three Asian films: Hong Kong-helmer Yonfan's "Beauty," "A Haru" (Wait
and See) from Japanese director Shinji Somai and Mamoru Oshii's animated
film "The Wolf Brigade." Variety reported a number of English language
pics in Panorama: Sundance premieres "War Zone" by Tim Roth, "Trick" by Jim Fall and Mike Figgis' "The Loss of Sexual Innocence." Amos Kollek's
"Fiona" and Mark Herman's "Little Voice" are also among the line-up,
according to sources culled from Variety.
Special screenings include a new documentary by Wim Wenders about jazz
musician Ry Cooder and his collaboration with the traditional Cuban
music ensemble "Buena Vista Social Club" and "Beyond Silence" director
Caroline Link's adaptation of the classic German children story's
"Puenktchen und Anton." Along with Link's film, the Berlinale will run
the 22nd Children's Film Festival, which includes 15 feature films and
14 short films, competing for the Crystal Bears. Opening the kinder
fest is "De Bal" (The Ball) by Dany Deprez
(Belgium/Netherlands/Germany). Additionally at the Berlin festival,
special tributes to Shirley MacLaine, who will be honored for lifetime
achievement, and Otto Preminger, are also scheduled.