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Berlin Film Festival: South African 'Carmen' Wins Golden Bear + Anti-Nazi Fighters & Explicit Sex

Berlin Film Festival Golden Bear Pauline MalefaneBerlin Film Festival Golden Bear 2005 goes to Carmen in Khayelitsha.

The 2005 Berlin Film Festival's Golden Bear has been awarded to the Xhosa-language South African production Carmen in Khayelitsha. Directed by Mark Dornford-May and starring Pauline Malefane (right, with the Golden Bear atop her head), Carmen in Khayelitsha is a modernized version of Georges Bizet's opera set in a South African slum.

Headed by Roland Emmerich, the seven-member Berlin Film Festival jury gave the runner-up Silver Bear to Gu Changwei's Peacock, which depicts the daily life of a working-class family in a small Chinese town.

Berlin 2005: Nazi era drama Sophie Scholl wins two Official Competition awards

Marc Rothemund was voted Best Director for Sophie Scholl: The Final Days, the story of the young German resistance leader who was eventually caught by the Nazis and beheaded along with her brother.

As the young anti-Nazi fighter, Julia Jentsch was Berlin's Best Actress, while Lou Taylor Pucci received the Best Actor Silver Bear for his role as the insecure, thumbsucking teenage son of Tilda Swinton and Vincent D'Onofrio in Mike Mills' U.S.-made Thumbsucker.

Hany Abu-Assad's controversial French-German-Dutch-Palestinian co-production Paradise Now, the story of two Palestinian suicide bombers, had been considered a front runner for the Golden Bear, but ended up with the Blue Angel Award for Best European film.

Other Berlin Film Festival 20005 Golden Bear contenders

Among the other films in competition for the 2005 Berlin Film Festival's Golden Bear were Raoul Peck's Sometimes in April, David Mackenzie's Asylum, Jacques Audiard's The Beat That My Heart Skipped, Paul Weitz's In Good Company, Wes Anderson's The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, Régis Wargnier's Man to Man, Aleksandr Sokurov's The Sun, Robert Guédiguian's Le promeneur du champ de Mars, Stefano Mordini's Smalltown, Italy, Lajos Koltai's Fateless, André Téchiné's Changing Times, Yoji Yamada's The Hidden Blade, and Tsai Ming-liang's The Wayward Cloud.

Pauline Malefane Berlin Film Festival photo: Berlinale 2005.

2005 Berlin Film Festival: Feb. 10–20, '05

The Berlin Film Festival's Golden Bear has been awarded to the Xhosa-language, South African film Carmen in Khayelitsha. Directed by Mark Dornford-May and starring Pauline Malefane, the film is a modernized version of Georges Bizet's opera, set in a South African slum.

Headed by Roland Emmerich, the seven-member Berlin jury gave the runner-up Silver Bear to Gu Changwei's Peacock, which depicts the daily life of a working-class family in a small Chinese town.

Marc Rothemund was voted best director for Sophie Scholl - The Final Days, the story of the young German resistance leader who was eventually caught and beheaded along with her brother.

Julia Jentsch, the anti-Nazi fighter in Sophie Scholl, won as best actress, while Lou Taylor Pucci received the best actor Silver Bear for his role as an insecure teenager in the U.S.-made Thumbsucker.

Hany Abu-Assad's controversial French-German-Dutch-Palestinian co-production Paradise Now, the story of two Palestinian suicide bombers, had been considered a front runner for the Golden Bear, but ended up with only the Best European Film award.

Yesterday, Feb. 12, Korean director Im Kwon-taek, 69, described by Der Spiegelas the “godfather of Korean film,” became the first Asian filmmaker to received the Honorary Golden Bear at the 55th Berlin International Film Festival.

Im shared the honor with Spanish (though born in Peru) actor-director-writer Fernando Fernán Gómez, 83, winner of six Spanish Film Academy Goya Awards (one of them as best actor for his tour de force in the title role of José Luis Garci's 1998 El Abuelo / The Grandfather) and two best actor Silver Bears at the Berlinale (for El Anacoreta / The Anchorite in 1977 and for Stico in 1985).

Among the previous recipients of the Honorary Golden Bear are Sophia LorenElia KazanJeanne Moreau, and Oliver Stone.

Explicit sex movie The Wayward Cloud Tsai Ming-LiangSexually explicit The Wayward Cloud up for Berlin Film Festival's Golden Bear.

Explicit Sex Movie 'The Wayward Cloud': Berlin

“The body always plays an important role in my films,” says Malaysian-born The Wayward Cloud writer-director Tsai Ming-Liang. “You could say the body is the most beautiful thing we have or you could say it's the ugliest thing we have. We can sell bodies, we can adore or worship bodies.”

Set in a Taipei apartment complex in the midst of a summertime drought, Tsai's made-in-Taiwan (with additional French and Chinese state funding) The Wayward Cloud tells the story of a fledgling porn star who accidentally runs into the woman he once loved. Graphic sexual scenes are interspersed with outrageous musical numbers, including one featuring a dancing penis. I should add that as a result of the drought, watermelons play an important – and at times kinky – role in the film.

The Wayward Cloud Berlin precursor: Intimacy

The Wayward Cloud, which stars Lee Kang-sheng and Chen Shiang-chyi, is one of the films in competition for the 2005 Berlin Film Festival's Golden Bear. If The Wayward Cloud wins Berlin's top prize, it won't be a first for movie featuring explicit sex: Patrice Chéreau's Intimacy, which has an explicit oral sex scene with stars Mark Rylance and Kerry Fox, took home the Golden Bear in 2001.

Tsai Ming-Liang's The Wayward Cloud image: Berlin Film Festival.

Golden Bear: Carmen e-Khayelitsha / Carmen in Khayelitsha by Marc Dornford-May

Jury Grand Prix - Silver Bear: Kong que / Peacock by Gu Changwei

Silver Bear for Best Director: Marc Rothemund for Sophie Scholl - Die letzten Tage / Sophie Scholl - The Final Days

Silver Bear for Best Actor: Lou Taylor Pucci for Thumbsucker

Silver Bear for Best Actress: Julia Jentsch for Sophie Scholl - The Final Days

Silver Bear for outstanding artistic contribution: Tsai Ming Liang for the screenplay of Tian bian yi duo yun / The Wayward Cloud

Silver Bear for Best Film Music: Alexandre Desplat for De battre, mon coeur s'est arrêté / The Beat That My Heart Skipped by Jacques Audiard

Honorary Golden Bear: Im Kwon-Taek and Fernando Fernán Gómez

Berlinale Kamera: Shochiku, Helene Schwarz, Daniel Day-Lewis, Katrin Sass

AGICOA's Blue Angel Award for the best European film: Paradise Now by Hany Abu-Assad

The Alfred Bauer Prize for "taking the art of film in a new direction": The Wayward Cloud by Tsai Ming Lian

Jury Prize - Silver Bear for Short Film: The Intervention by Jay Duplass and Jam Session by Izabela Plucinska

Special Mention: Don Khishot Be'Yerushalaim / Don Quixote in Jerusalem by Dani Rosenberg

Panorama Short Film Award: Green Bush by Warwick Thornton

Special Panorama Jury prize: Tama tu by Taika Waititi

Special Mention: Rhee Young-ran for her performance in Sara Jeanne by Kim Seong-Sooks and Bikini by Lasse Persson

New York Film Academy Scholarship: Zgvis donidan. . . / Eye Level . . . by George Ovashvili

International Short Film Jury Prix UIP Berlin: Hoi Maya / Hi Maya by Claudia Lorenz

Ecumenical Jury Prize for a film in the Competition: Sophie Scholl - The Final Days by Marc Rothemund

Ecumenical Jury Prize for a film in the Panorama: Va, vis et deviens / Live and Become by Radu Mihaieanu

Ecumenical Jury Prize for a film in the Forum: Ratziti Lihiyot gibor / On the Objection Front by Shiri Tsur

FIPRESCI Prize for a film in the Competition: Tian bian yi duo yun / The Wayward Cloud by Tsai Ming Liang

FIPRESCI Prize for a film in the Panorama: Massaker / Massacre by Monika Borgmann, Lokman Slim, and Hermann Theißen

FIPRESCI Prize for a film in the Forum: Niu pi / Oxhide by Liu Jiayin

C.I.C.A.E. Prize for a film in the Panorama: Ultranova by Bouli Lanners

C.I.C.A.E. Prize for a film in the Forum: Odessa Odessa. . . by Michale Boganim

Special Mention: Mahiru no hoshizora / Starlit High Noon by Nakagawa Yosuke and Stadt als Beute by Irene von Alberti, Miriam Dehne, and Esther Gronenborn

Panorama audience award: Va, vis et deviens / Live and Become by Radu Mihaieanu

The Panorama audience award (short film): Hi Maya by Claudia Lorenz

Peace Film Award: Lakposhtha hâm parvaz mikonand / Turtles Can Fly by Bahman Ghobadi

Amnesty International Prize: Paradise Now by Hany Abu-Assad

 

International Competition Jury: Roland Emmerich (Jury President, Germany), Ingeborga Dapkunaite (Lithuania), Bai Ling (China), Franka Potente (Germany), Wouter Barendrecht (The Netherlands), Nino Cerruti (Italy), Andrei Kurkov (Ukraine)

Short Film Jury: Gabriela Tagliavini (Argentina), Marten Rabarts (New Zealand), Susan Korda (USA)

 

Photos: Andreas Teich, Richad Hübner, Ali Ghandtachi © Berlinale 2005

Berlin Film Festival Golden Bear competition films

Accused Jacob ThuesenAccused / Anklaget, director Jacob Thuesen (Denmark)
Natasha Richardson Ian McKellen AsylumAsylum, director David MacKenzie, with Natasha Richardson, Ian McKellen (United States / Ireland)
Romain Duris The Beat That My Heart SkippedThe Beat That My Heart Slipped / De battre mon coeur s'est arreté, director Jacques Audiard, with Roman Duris, Niels Arestrup, Mélanie Laurent, Emmanuelle Devos, Linh Dan Pham (France)
Ghosts Christian PetzoldGhosts / Gespenster, director Christian Petzold (Germany / France)
Scarlett Johansson Topher Grace In Good CompanyIn Good Company, director Paul Weitz, with Dennis Quaid, Scarlett Johansson, Topher Grace (United States)
The Hidden Blade Yoji YamadaThe Hidden Blade / Kakushi Ken - Oni no Tsume, director Yoji Yamada (Japan)
Peacock Gu ChangweiPeacock / Kong que, director Gu Changwei (China)
Bill Murray Owen Wilson The Life Aquatic with Steve ZissouThe Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, director Wes Anderson, with Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Anjelica Huston, Cate Blanchett, Bud Cort, Jeff Goldblum, Seymour Cassel (United States)
Joseph Fiennes Kristin Scott Thomas Man to ManMan to Man, director Regis Wargnier, with Joseph Fiennes, Kristin Scott Thomas (France / South Africa / United Kingdom)
Sylvie Testud Words in BlueWords in Blue / Les mots bleus, director Alain Corneau, with Sylvie Testud (France)
Florian Lukas Erdal Yildiz One Day in EuropeOne Day in Europe, director Hannes Stoehr, with Florian Lukas, Erdal Yildiz (Germany / Spain)
Kais Nashif Paradise NowParadise Now, director Hany Abu-Hassad, with Kais Nashif (The Netherlands / France / Palestinian Territories)
Michel Bouquet The Late Mitterrand Le promeneur du Champ de MarsThe Late Mitterrand / Le promeneur du Champ de Mars, director Robert Guediguian, with Michel Bouquet (France)
Stefano Accorsi Smalltown Italy Provincia MeccanicaSmalltown, Italy / Provincia Meccanica, director Stefano Mordini, with Stefano Accorsi (Italy)
The Sun Alexander SokurovThe Sun / Solntse, director Alexander Sokurov (Russia / Italy)
Sometimes in April Raoul PeckSometimes in April, director Raoul Peck (United States / United Kingdom)
Julia Jentsch Sophe Scholl The Final DaysSophie Scholl: The Final Days / Sophie Scholl - die letzten Tage, director Marc Rothemund, with Julia Jentsch (Germany)
Fateless Lajos KoltaiFateless / Sorstalanság, director Lajos Koltai (Hungary)
Catherine Deneuve Gérard Depardieu Changing TimesChanging Times / Les temps qui changent, director André Techiné, with Catherine Deneuve, Gérard Depardieu (France)
Lou Taylor Pucci ThumbsuckerThumbsucker, director Mike Mills, with Lou Taylor Pucci, Benjamin Bratt, Vincent D'Onofrio, Keanu Reeves, Nancy O'Dell, Tilda Swinton, Vince Vaughn, Walter Kim, Kelli Garner (United States)
The Wayward Cloud Tsai Ming LiangThe Wayward Cloud / Tian bian yi duo yun, director Tsai Ming Liang (France / Taiwan / China)
Pauline Malefane Carmen in KhayelitshaCarmen in Khayelitsha / U-Carmen eKhayelitsha, director Mark Dornford-May, with Pauline Malefane (South Africa)

Tampere Short Film Festival

Now in its 36th year, the Tampere International Short Film Festivalcontinues its open-minded exploration of Planet Earth. This years Festival had a record number of entries. More and more short films are produced around the world. Filmmaking is much cheaper and easier than it used to be. But of course it doesnt mean that making a good film is any easier than before, says Festival Director Jukka-Pekka Laakso.

This years program includes films dealing with the confrontation between Islam and Christian/secular cultures, such as Lieber Muslim (2005), which revolves around a young Chechen boy, and Zeina Durras American narrative short Seventh Dog (2005), a black comedy depicting the tragicomic life of two Arabs in New York City. “When we chose the themes a year ago, says Laakso, we didnt know just how highly topical this issue would be.

Theres also a focus on Brazilian films, including the screening of a 1929 rarity called São Paulo, Sinfonia da Metrópole, directed by Adalberto Kemeny and Rudolf Rex Lustig, and which was inspired by Walter Ruttmanns 1927 film Berlin: Die Sinfonie der Großstadt / Berlin, Symphony of a Great City.


         
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