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Das FILMFEST 2019

Das FILMFEST

16. - 22.10. 2019

The festival of German-language films DAS FILMFEST has for 14 years brought the most interesting feature films produced in Germany, Austria and Switzerland to Czech cinephiles. The festival introduces films that would otherwise have hardly found their way into local cinemas. The carefully compiled programme offers not only films popular among viewers but also critically acclaimed films, art films, feature-length debuts by promising young directors or documentaries covering serious topics. Every year, our dramaturgy looks back into the past in order to present a retrospective section dedicated to a particular event or topic.

The festival is traditionally co-organized by the Goethe-Institut, the Austrian Cultural Forum Prague and the Swiss Embassy in the Czech Republic.

This year’s edition of DAS FILMFEST will have the richest programme since the beginning of the festival 14 years ago – including eight different programme sections.

Besides the traditional DAS FILMFEST SPEZIAL, which presents the most interesting, award-winning and popular films, the documentary section DIE DOKU, the short film section SHORTS and the kids section BIO JUNIOR, the audience can look forward to other attentively assembled thematic sections. The section BACK THEN IN THE EAST (ES WAR EINMAL IM OSTEN) offers, on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, a number of films that convey events and the mood of that time through personal stories. The section REBELLION & REVOLT focuses on the rebels and often eccentric heroes who stand against society, authorities, conformity or rules. It is about those who resist coercion and oppression, those who are not afraid of swimming against the tide. This year's programme also pays tribute to two cultural icons. The Swiss film and theatre actor Bruno Ganz belonged to the most important German-speaking actors of the present day. He is best known for his portrayal of Adolf Hitler in the film Downfall, and it is this film as well as the cult film Wings of Desire by Wim Wenders which will be part of the retrospective section: BRUNO GANZ. The second personality, who we want to pay tribute to through this year's programme, is a German author who wrote adventurous novels about the Wild West many generations have grown up with. The section CULT KARL MAY presents four films, one of which is the yet unknown puppet adaptation ‘The track leads to the Silver Lake’.

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DFF: All About Me

Adaptation of German entertainer Hape Kerkeling’s autobiography. The story begins in the Ruhr Valley of 1972: Hans-Peter is nine years old and a bit chubby, but full of self-confidence. The latter is not least due to his ability to make other people laugh, a talent that he trains on every occasion - be it in the grocery's shop of his grandmother Änne, with the customers as an audience, or at the various meetings with his party-prone relatives. But the idyllic family life takes a turn for the darker, when Hape's mother loses her sense of smell and taste as the result of a chronic sinus infection and starts struggling with depression. The father is helpless and doesn't know how to deal with his wife's mental illness. But for Hape, the sadness of his mother is an even greater incentive to act out his comedic side. Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: Ballon (eng. sub)

Balloon is a German thriller that deals with the crossing of the inner German border of the families Strelzyk and Wetzel from the GDR to West Germany with a homemade hot-air balloon. Show more

2D CD CS/ES CS 12
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DFF: How About Adolf?

The bourgeois couple Stephan and Elisabeth has invited Elisabeth's brother Thomas and his pregnant partner Anna as well as their distinguished friend René for dinner. The convivial evening with good food and fine wines takes an unexpected turn, when Thomas and Anna announce that they want to name their son Adolf. The hosts and René are rendered speechless and soon a fierce argument erupts that gradually spirals out of control. Suppressed conflicts, sins of their youth and family secrets are used as weapons in a debate about the appropriateness of a name that turns into a general reckoning where nothing is taboo anymore. Show more

2D CS/ES 12
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DFF: Vinnetou I

In the first part of the immensely successful "Winnetou" trilogy directed by Harald Reinl, an inexperienced railroad employee nicknamed "Greenhorn" becomes a courageous westerner called Old Shatterhand. In consequence of the intrigues of villain Santer, who unlawfully takes hold of the land of the Apaches, Shatterhand almost becomes the enemy of the apache chief Intschu-tschuna and his son Winnetou. However, after saving Winnetou’s life and proving himself in a fight with Intschu-tschuna, he becomes Winnetou’s blood brother. Beyond that, Winnetou’s sister Nscho-tschi seems to take a shine to the "white man" but Santer is already plotting new mischief. Show more

2D CS U
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DFF: Aren’t You Happy?

A girl roams through the city looking for a place to sleep. Along the way she meets young mothers who celebrate motherhood religiously, goes home with an abstinent existentialist for whom sex is "just another market", and waits for the end of capitalism in a drag bar. Her attempt to write a book doesn’t make it beyond the first sentence of the second chapter, and she finds no space between art galleries, yoga studios and the beds of strangers. Instead of trying to fit in, she starts regarding her depression as a political issue. Through 15 of the girl’s humorous encounters, "Aren't You Happy?" explores our post-modern society between precarity and self-marketing, serial monogamy and neo-spirituality, disillusionment and the pressure to be happy. Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: The American Friend

Jonathan is a craftsman living with his family in the city of Hamburg where he has a small workshop for his painting. One day a Frenchmen appears on the scene, making him an incredible offer - in exchange for 250 000 German Marks he is to travel to Paris where he is to assassinate a member of the Mafia. Could Jonathan′s recent acquaintance, the enigmatic Tom Ripley lie behind all this? Jonathan is anyhow involved in the painting of fake pictures. Wanting the money in order to finance the treatment of his severe illness, he takes on the job. But things are not to be settled with just one murder alone. Soon he has to kill another man. Jonathan tries to free himself from the gangsters clutches with Tom Ripley′s help, a man who is somehow mysteriously involved in the whole affair. Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: What Have We Done to Deserve This?

Wanda, 49-year-old atheist feminist from Vienna, faces her worst nightmare when her teenage daughter Nina announces that she has converted to Islam, is going to wear a headscarf and from now on should be called Fatima. Mother’s world is turned upside down. To top it all off, Wanda’s ex-husband becomes a father again, which only makes her wishing for the good old times to come back when her only problems were her daughter ditching school and smoking pot. Surprisingly, she finds a supporter. It’s Hanife – a mother of Nina’s friend Maryam – who together with her parents immigrated to Austria 35 years ago in order to be saved from the outdated image of women having to cover their hair. Together they embark on a comic search for explanations, a sense of belonging and identity. Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: How About Adolf?

The bourgeois couple Stephan and Elisabeth has invited Elisabeth's brother Thomas and his pregnant partner Anna as well as their distinguished friend René for dinner. The convivial evening with good food and fine wines takes an unexpected turn, when Thomas and Anna announce that they want to name their son Adolf. The hosts and René are rendered speechless and soon a fierce argument erupts that gradually spirals out of control. Suppressed conflicts, sins of their youth and family secrets are used as weapons in a debate about the appropriateness of a name that turns into a general reckoning where nothing is taboo anymore. Show more

2D CS/ES 12
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DFF: L'Animale

Mati is about to graduate from high school. She longs to leave her hometown for a university in Vienna and become a vet, just like her mother. She spends her free time with bikers of the same age, who accept her as the group’s equal member. But the idyllic friendship starts to deteriorate when one of her friends sexually harasses a girl at a disco. Mati is suddenly forced to choose whether to side with her friend or with the unknown girl. While her biking gang is falling apart, her parents’ relationship is under serious strain as well. And Mati isn’t the only one starting to fundamentally reconsider her approach to friendship, love and own sexuality. This stylish drama uses the stories of Mati and her parents to show that the question of coming-of-age and coming to terms with oneself does not have to be related to age. The dynamic story about discovering one’s own sexuality and gender was presented at this year’s Berlinale and nominated for the Teddy Award. Show more

2D CS/ES
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DFF: Vinnetou II

After his father’s death, Winnetou becomes the new chief of the Apache Indians. He wants to restore peace between the Indians and the white men. After saving three officers from execution by the Assiniboine Indians, he manages to initiate negotiations between soldiers and Indians. But the provocations of a Colonel cast doubts on the Indians′ side. Thus, to prove his peaceful intentions to the chiefs, Lieutenant Merril wants to marry the Indian girl Ribana. However, Winnetou is in love with Ribana, too. At the same time, Winnetou′s long-time friend Old Shatterhand is fighting against Forrester, a bandit who together with his vassal David Luke searches the Indians’ land for resources and tries to play the tribes against each other. Winnetou and Old Shatterhand know that there will not be peace as long as people like Forrester are making trouble. Show more

2D CS U
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DFF: Crush My Heart

Together with other Slovak Roma/Gypsy, the joyful teenager Pepe lives under the supervision of his despotic uncle Rocky in Vienna. To earn money for his mother and sisters in Eastern Slovakia, Pepe goes begging day after day. Despite the harshness of his everyday life, Pepe seems to have come to terms with his life situation, but that changes as the same age Marcela comes to work on her father’s debt for Rocky. The two teenagers fall in love and dream of a free self-determined life in which they are allowed to live their love freely. For the first time in Pepe’s life, he looks beyond his own limits and tries to escape from his dreary everyday life with Marcela. But it is not to be. Show more

2D CS/ES ES 15
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DFF: Sweethear

Franny je zcela dezorientovaná jak ve svém pracovním, tak i v soukromém životě a k tomu má tendence k panickým záchvatům. Oproti ní je samoživitelka Mel tvrdá soběstačná žena, která chce krádeží diamantu sobě a své dceři zajistit lepší život. Ať už je její plán sebelepší, jeho realizace neproběhne zrovna ideálně. Nikdo by jí ale rozhodně nepřál vzít si za rukojmí zrovna Franny. Zatímco velitelka útvaru rychlého nasazení Ingrid von Kaiten je oběma na stopě, Franny svými panickými záchvaty a vtipy o matkách přivádí Mel k šílenství. Navíc je tu ještě atraktivní policista Harry, který Franny totálně zamotá hlavu a stane se druhým rukojmím. Chaos je dokonán. Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: The Trail Leads to the Silver Lake

The puppet film deals with the outlaw Brinkley who is wanted by authorities and currently on a Mississippi steamer. Old Shatterhand, too, is on the steamer to present the chief's tribe Big Bear with a treasure map that supposedly leads to treasure of gold in the Silver Lake. Brinkley gets wind of it and tries to snatch the map. However, it is not only the map that is in danger but also the wages of the railway workers. Winnetou goes to the rescue but can he and Old Shatterhand take on Brinkley and his bandits and can the treasure in the Silver Lake still be saved? Show more

2D CS U
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DFF: The Sons of Great Bear

Second half of the last century: There are only few tribes of indigenous people of the northern USA left who live in freedom. Most of the tribes have given up the fight against the white men’s superiority and live in reservations. But a small tribe desperately tries to defend its freedom. However, when Chief Tokai-ihto is taken captive after he had been betrayed, it seems inevitable for the tribe to be defeated by the white men. Tokai-ihto is sent from captivity to the reservation since the white men think he would cause no harm. But they underestimate the tribe′s desire for freedom and its undaunted courage. On their way to Canada to start a new life in freedom, the Indians encounter several dangers: An enemy tribe tries to block their way at a river. Thus their last fight that decides about freedom and captivity, and about life and death begins. Show more

2D CS U
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DFF: Caviar

Nadja knows the oligarch Igor inside out. As his interpreter she has seen more of him than both of them care to admit. But his latest project is a lot more public: a lavish villa, which he has decided to build right on top of a bridge in the heart of Vienna: if the Medici can do it, why not me? But Nadja, her best friend Vera and her nanny Teresa have a sabotage plan. Film Kaviár dokazuje, že je velký rozdíl, zda jsou ruská klišé vyprávěna o Rusech nebo samotnými Rusy. Rusko-rakouská režisérka Elena Tikhonova využila svého zasvěceného pohledu na ruskou smetánku ve Vídni a vytvořila tak svižnou komedii o střetu dvou kultur. Ibiza patří včerejšku – dnes je tu Kaviár! Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: West

Looking to start a new life, Nelly escapes with her son Alexej from East Germany into West Germany during a volatile time for the still divided country. There they live as refugees, having to go through a variety of steps in order to gain citizenship. This process hits a lull when officials begin to question Nelly about her ex, whose death remains suspicious. She soon uncovers information that could put her and Alexej in great danger. The intense paranoia that follows threatens to destroy her sanity and relationship with the fragile Alexej. It's a tale of survival and love, and a testament to the grip that the past can have on our present. A vigorous thriller, WEST also serves as a reminder of the hostile climate of 1970s Berlin. Show more

BD CS CS/ES
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DFF: Love Machine

Georgy, singer of a two-man-band, loses his partner and friend. Broke and with nowhere to live, Georgy then discovers a profitable market niche. He decides to offer himself and his body up to the ladies in return for payment. It´s running smoothly in his new line of work until new complications arise: Georgy falls in love with Jadwiga, a driving instructor. Will he have to decide between love and a job? Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: Wings of Desire

The sky over war-scarred Berlin is full of gentle, trench-coated angels who listen to the tortured thoughts of mortals and try to comfort them. One, Damiel, wishes to become mortal after falling in love with a beautiful trapeze artist, Marion. Peter Falk, as himself, assists in the transformation by explaining the simple joys of a human experience, such as the sublime combination of coffee and cigarettes. Told from the angel′s point of view, Wings of Desire is shot in black and white, blossoming into color only when the angels perceive the realities of humankind. Ultimately, Damiel determines that he must experience humanity Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: 25 km/h

Lars Eidinger and Bjarne Mädel play two completely disparate brothers who decide at their father’s funeral to follow a crazy whim and, at long last, fulfill their long-held dream of traveling through Germany on their mopeds. While they make some strange new acquaintances and experience all kinds of crazy situations during their marathon journey, the brothers gradually come to realize that, in the end, blood is thicker than water Show more

2D CS/ES CS 12
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DFF: Bez věcí nad věcí!

Toni loves his espresso machine and his hair growth pills. Paul can’t function without Amazon, Siri and his sacred sneakers. More importantly, Paul and Toni can’t make it through one day without each other. Instead, the two men engage in a constant battle to see who’s the biggest and the best. One day, however, everything changes and they find themselves without any possessions. It’s Day 1 of a 100-day wager Toni and Paul have made with one another. They’ve given up everything they own and will only get one item back per day. The two men immediately find themselves faced with questions they’ve never thought about before. How much do we really need? How should we really live our lives? Suddenly, everyday life becomes immensely complicated, but also incredibly simple. Show more

2D CS/ES 12
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DFF: What Have We Done to Deserve This?

Wanda, 49-year-old atheist feminist from Vienna, faces her worst nightmare when her teenage daughter Nina announces that she has converted to Islam, is going to wear a headscarf and from now on should be called Fatima. Mother’s world is turned upside down. To top it all off, Wanda’s ex-husband becomes a father again, which only makes her wishing for the good old times to come back when her only problems were her daughter ditching school and smoking pot. Surprisingly, she finds a supporter. It’s Hanife – a mother of Nina’s friend Maryam – who together with her parents immigrated to Austria 35 years ago in order to be saved from the outdated image of women having to cover their hair. Together they embark on a comic search for explanations, a sense of belonging and identity. Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: Beauty and Decay

He is best known as the bouncer at the Berlin techno club ‘Berghain’, but Sven Marquardt is also a photographer. Even before the fall of the Berlin Wall, he was portraying East Berlin’s subculture and its protagonists in black and white. After years of nightlife, he has more recently devoted himself increasingly to photography and is once again portraying one of his earlier favourite models, Dominique Hollenstein, known as Dome. Together they recall the attitude towards life of a rebellious and creative youth in the GDR. They also remember the ‘pretty’ punk Robert Paris, who was himself a photographer and also became one of Marquardt’s favourite models. Thirty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Robert Paris’s impressive photographs of wastelands and facades in East Berlin recall the radical transformation this city has undergone since then. It becomes clear that the disintegration of a society has also left its mark on these former rebels. Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: Wackersdorf

Bavaria in the early 1980s: The economic situation in the town of Wackersdorf is tense. People are losing their jobs and there is no boom in sight. As district administrator Hans Schuierer’s re-election is in danger, a message from the Bavarian State Government is welcome news: The plan is to build a nuclear reprocessing plant in Wackersdorf that would create many new jobs. At first, Schuierer is truly excited and celebrated as a savior by the locals. However he soon becomes suspicious when he realizes how the State Government tries to drastically and illegally mute criticism and nip protests in the bud. He starts to dig deeper and finds out that the plant is by no means as harmless as the government tries to make people believe. Supported by activists such as the young Monica, teacher Eberwein and the local priest, Schuierer becomes an outspoken opponent of the planned construction and a figurehead of the protest movement. Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: Fritzi: A Revolutionary Tale

he final months in East Germany before the fall of the Berlin Wall on 9 November 1989 provide the backdrop for co-directors Ralf Kukula and Matthias Bruhn’s animated feature "Fritzi". 12 year-old Fritzi wanted to spend her summer holidays with Sophie, but her best friend has gone to Hungary on a camping trip with her mother and has left her dog Sputnik in Fritzi’s care. When Sophie doesn’t return to class after the holidays, Fritzi is preoccupied with trying to reunite Sputnik with Sophie. As the weeks pass, Fritzi experiences the dramatic changes to her country at first hand, but believes that a miracle will have to happen if she is ever to see Sophie again. Show more

2D CS/ES CS U
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DFF: Love Machine

Georgy, singer of a two-man-band, loses his partner and friend. Broke and with nowhere to live, Georgy then discovers a profitable market niche. He decides to offer himself and his body up to the ladies in return for payment. It´s running smoothly in his new line of work until new complications arise: Georgy falls in love with Jadwiga, a driving instructor. Will he have to decide between love and a job? Show more

2D CS/ES 15
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DFF: As We Were Dreaming

Crushed dreams and loss of stability following the collapse of the Berlin Wall are the main themes of Andreas Dresen’s disappointing “As We Were Dreaming,” a hard-edged drama about a group of friends coming of age just as the Cold War ends. Stuffed to the gills with fights, strobe lights and anarchic energy, the well-played pic feels like a late arrival in a long line of movies from throughout the former Eastern bloc covering similar ground. Dresen certainly knows his East German grunge, yet the unnecessary voiceover, frequent flashbacks and stereotyped female characters play like a film from at least 10 years ago. Sales outside German territories may be a battle. Show more

BD 2D CS
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DFF: Cut off

Paul Herzfeld, a coroner in Berlin, thinks it bodes ill when he finds a small capsule in a body’s head during an autopsy. He is proved correct: The capsule contains a note with his daughter's phone number on it. It turns out she was abducted by a sadistic psychopath, who forces Herzfeld to play a perfidious cat-and-mouse game in which he is supposed to find the next clue in a second body. The corpse, however, is on the island of Helgoland and a storm is preventing Paul from getting there. He asks Linda, a young graphic novelist, for help: Together with janitor Ender, he wants her to perform the autopsy and find the note. Over the phone he gives them the necessary instructions, while together with his intern Ingolf, he is also looking for further clues that could lead him to his daughter’s whereabouts. Show more

2D CS/ES 15

Calendar of events

October
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