The German Film Festival 2023 runs from May 2-24 across Australia. Screening times and bookings at www.germanfilmfestival.com.au.
Of particular interest are:
- “Lost Transport” (Jewish storyline)
- “Till the end of the night” (transgender + gay)
- “One in a Million” (teen/queer/coming of age)
- “Love Thing” (LGBTQI+)
2022 • 98 MIN • THE NETHERLANDS, LUXEMBOURG, GERMANY • DRAMA, HISTORY, ANTI-WAR
DIRECTOR: Saskia Diesing
CAST: Hanna van Vliet, Eugénie Anselin, Anna Bachmann, Bram Suijker, Konstantin Frolov
LANGUAGE: German and Dutch with English subtitles, English
Inspired by true events, Lost Transport is a deeply human story about cohesion and friendship set in the last days of WWII.
April, 1945. A train of 2,500 Jewish prisoners from the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp stops in a field near a German village and the German soldiers flee from advancing Russian troops, abandoning those onboard. The village quickly turns into a refugee camp, where a forced quarantine only adds fuel to the chaos.
A chance encounter results in a Dutch couple from the train, Simone (European Shooting Star Hanna van Vliet) and Isaac, and Red Army sniper Vera (Eugénie Anselin, Bad Banks) being assigned to stay at the house of distrustful villager Winnie (Anna Bachmann).
As the village is marked by mistrust, despair and resentment, Simone, Vera and Winnie must learn to adapt and find compassion, resulting in an unexpected friendship.
Told from a unique female perspective and shot across Luxembourg and Germany by director Saskia Diesing, Lost Transport is an impactful story of fearlessness.
2023 • 120 MIN • GERMANY • CRIME, THRILLER
DIRECTOR: Christoph Hochhäusler
CAST: Timocin Ziegler, Thea Ehre, Michael Sideris
LANGUAGE: German with English subtitles
As an undercover investigator, Robert is tasked with gaining the trust of drug dealer Victor. To do so, he pretends to be in a relationship with the recently paroled Leni (Thea Ehre, in a Silver Bear-winning role for Best Supporting Performance), as the police hope her ties with the felon will help to infiltrate the organisation.
While the plan initially works smoothly, their fake relationship is rocky from the start. Leni is transgender, and Robert, who is gay, was once in love with her former self. While they soon have the criminal in their sights, their buried feelings sit close to the surface and ultimately, drug dealer Victor is the one who forces Robert to confront his conflicting feelings of love.
A smart, subtle blend of genre and auteur cinema, Christoph Hochhäusler’s Till the End of the Night is an intricate exploration of love and identity and features a nostalgic soundtrack, dark romantic atmosphere and an excellent ensemble cast.
2022 • 84 MIN • GERMANY • DOCUMENTARY
DIRECTOR: Joya Thome
CAST: Whitney Bjerken, Yara Storp
LANGUAGE: German with English subtitles, English
One in a Million tells the story of two girls on the brink of adulthood. As US gymnast and YouTuber Whitney Bjerken struggles with setbacks, she turns to music to express her feelings. Yara from Germany is one of her biggest fans and part of a show-acrobatics team. When Yara falls in love with a girl for the very first time, she barely finds time for her fan-account anymore. While navigating the exciting world of social media, Yara and Whitney begin to find out who they are and what they want in life.
A coming-of-age documentary about success and loneliness in the age of social media, friendship and first love, coming out as queer and having the courage to find your voice.
2022 • 100 MIN • GERMANY • COMEDY, ROMANCE
DIRECTOR: Anika Decker
CAST: Elyas M’Barek, Alexandra Maria Lara, Lucie Heinze, Peri Baumeister, Denis Moschitto
LANGUAGE: German with English subtitles
It is red carpet time in Berlin, and everyone at the film premiere – squealing fans, prowling paparazzi and eager camera crews – is waiting to catch a glimpse of Germany’s biggest movie star, Marvin Bosch (Festival favourite Elyas M’Barek, also in A Thousand Lines). But their wait will be in vain, as there is no way Marvin will show up after his interview with the snippy and ruthless tabloid journalist Bettina Bamberger (Alexandra Maria Lara, The Collini Case GER21) goes horribly wrong.
The star finds himself on the run from the media and ends up taking shelter at 3000, a small, independent feminist LGBTQI+ theatre. Run by Frieda (Lucie Heinze, My Son GER22), 3000 is on the verge of bankruptcy. Under the watchful eye of the public, will they manage to save the theatre, restore Marvin’s reputation and give true love a real chance?
A fun new romantic comedy from top writer/ director Anika Decker (Rabbit Without Ears), Love Thing is a story of trials and tribulations, love and betrayal, and the quest to find happiness.