If you happen to be in Berlin over the next few days, there’s a brand new film festival taking place from December 4-7 and it’s clearly one that’s going to stand outside the typical film festival box.
The Berlin Art Film Festival aims to show a selection of in a “different, daring, experimental, unusual and poetic way.” For four days, they will be screening over 30 films that range from non-narrative shorts to classics of the Berlin School. The films include work from established directors like Angela Schanelec, Cynthia Beatt and Thomas Arslan as well as film students and fresh new talents like Julian Radlmeier, Vika Kirchenbauer or Lisa Violetta Gaß. Notably half the filmmakers are women.
“As someone who has known film festivals as a journalist, presenter, jury member and film worker, Toby Ashraf took his inspiration for the Berlin Art Film Festival from The Ballerina Ballroom Cinema of Dreams – a tiny, sweet, local and magical film gathering organized by Tilda Swinton and Mark Cousins in Nairn in 2008,” the festival explained of its intention. “The Cinema of Dreams was almost an anti-festival that stressed the social element of the cinematic experience, celebrated a feeling of togetherness and put the love of film over the need for publicity. Instead of trying to copy big festivals, the Berlin Art Film Festival also attempts a different approach: there will be no red carpets, no awards, no competition, no submissions and no hysteria about the latest and newest films.”
The festival explained that they are trying “to bring filmmakers and film lovers together for a dialogue about film.” If that sounds like something you’re up for (and why wouldn’t it?), head to the festival’s website for more information.