The Casey Affleck-directed drama Light of My Life, starring Affleck, Elisabeth Moss and newcomer Anna Pniowsky, will get its world premiere at next month’s Berlin Film Festival in the Panorama section. The dystopian drama, about a father and his young daughter who are trapped in the woods, is one of a raft of additions to the Panorama lineup (see the full lineup below).
A total of 45 films from 38 countries, including 34 world premieres, will screen in the section. Panorama’s opening film will be Jenna Bass’ Flatland, in which a bride and her pregnant friend make a liberating getaway across South Africa.
Among the strand’s highlights are Affleck’s first narrative feature as director, which is produced by The Imitation Game outfit Black Bear Pictures; Jayro Bustamante’s Ixcanul follow-up Tremblores (Tremors), about a father who tries to break free from his past after breaking the silence about his true sexuality; Syllas Tzoumerkas’ The Miracle of the Sargasso Sea about two women: one who is secretly planning to break out of her dreary small-town life, the other who inevitably finds herself drawn deeper and deeper into a morass of crime and perversion; Guy Nattiv’s Toronto thriller Skin starring Jamie Bell; Jonah Hill’s directorial debut Mid90s; Joanna Hogg title The Souvenir, in which a young film student’s 16mm films allow her to explore a world outside her social and emotional bubble; Kim Longinotto’s Shooting the Mafia about photographer Letizia Battaglia; and What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael which looks at film criticism.
Here are the additional Panorama films announced today (synopses from the festival):
La Arrancada (On the starting line) – France / Cuba / Brazil
by Aldemar Matias
Aldemar Matias delivers this delicate, sensitively filmed family portrait from Cuba. The life of competitive athlete Jenniffer is on the brink of change, just like the whole country. She is poised on the starting blocks – and not just in the 100-meter dash.
Der Atem (The Breath) – Germany
by Uli M Schueppel
Twenty-six people talk about love and hardship, hope and bitterness, fear and happiness accompanied by celluloid images of Berlin at night. A symphony of life, a magical cosmos. The third part of the filmmaker’s “Chants” trilogy on space, time and the body.
Breve historia del planeta verde (Brief Story from the Green Planet)
Argentina / Germany / Brazil / Spain
by Santiago Loza
When Tania finds out that her grandma has spent her final years in the caring company of a cute purple alien, she embarks on a journey through small-town Argentina with two close friends to deliver the creature back to its origins.
Divino Amor (Divine Love)
Brazil / Uruguay / Chile / Denmark / Norway / Sweden
by Gabriel Mascaro
Brazil, 2027. Joana, a member of evangelical cult Divino Amor, treats couples that want to separate by performing ritualised sexual acts with them and her husband. But her own marriage and faith are suffering due to her unfulfilled desire to have children.
Flesh out – Italy / France
by Michela Occhipinti
Verida is due to marry in three months. According to a Mauritanian tradition, she has to put on a lot of weight to appeal to her husband. The weight gain process gets harder as it progresses, and Verida begins to ask herself if this is what she really wants.
Light of My Life – USA
by Casey Affleck
A post-apocalyptic family drama by and with Casey Affleck about a father determined to protect his daughter at all costs. In a society without women, gender roles have to be renegotiated.
Normal – Italy
by Adele Tulli
Adele Tullis’s formally straightforward but aesthetically convincing documentary examines rigidly defined gender roles and many people’s uncritical submission to the dictates of (hetero-)normativity.
The Shadow Play – People’s Republic of China
by Lou Ye
After a demonstration against the demolition of old buildings, the director of the municipal building commission is found dead. In the guise of a film noir, a tale unfolds of corruption, building scandals and ruthless avarice.
Woo Sang (Idol) – South Korea
by Lee Su-jin
Politician Koo Myung-hui discovers his wife in the garage, cleaning their son’s bloodstained car. He has just run someone over. A rain-drenched political thriller with neo-noir elements.
The full Panorama lineup 2019:
37 Seconds by HIKARI with Mei Kayama, Misuzu Kanno, Makiko Watanabe, Shunsuke Daitō, Yuka Itaya. Japan –Debut film, World premiere
All My Loving by Edward Berger with Lars Eidinger, Nele Mueller-Stöfen, Hans Löw. Germany – World premiere
La Arrancada (On the Starting Line) by Aldemar Matias. France/Cuba/Brazil – Debut film, Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Der Atem (The Breath) by Uli M Schueppel. Germany – World premiere
Breve historia del planeta verde (Brief Story from the Green Planet) by Santiago Loza with Romina Escobar, Paula Grinszpan, Luis Soda. Argentina / Germany / Brazil / Spain – World premiere
Buoyancy by Rodd Rathjen with Sarm Heng, Thanawut Kasro, Mony Ros. Australia – Debut film, World premiere
Dafne by Federico Bondi with Carolina Raspanti, Antonio Piovanelli, Stefania Casini. Italy – World premiere
The Day After I’m Gone by Nimrod Eldar with Menashe Noy, Zohar Meidan. Israel – Debut film, World premiere
Divino Amor (Divine Love) by Gabriel Mascaro with Dira Paes, Julio Machado. Brazil / Uruguay / Chile / Denmark / Norway / Sweden – European premiere
A Dog Barking at the Moon by Xiang Zi with Nan Ji, Naren Hua, Zhang Xinyue. People’s Republic of China / Spain – Debut film, World premiere
A Dog Called Money by Seamus Murphy with PJ Harvey. Ireland / United Kingdom – Debut film, Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Estou Me Guardando Para Quando O Carnaval Chegar (Waiting for the Carnival) by Marcelo Gomes. Brazil – Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Eynayim Sheli (Chained) by Yaron Shani with Eran Naim, Stav Almagor, Stav Patai. Israel / Germany – World premiere
La fiera y la fiesta (Holy Beasts) by Laura Amelia Guzmán, Israel Cárdenas with Geraldine Chaplin, Udo Kier, Luis Ospina, Jaime Piña, Jackie Ludueña. Dominican Republic / Argentina / Mexico – World premiere
Flatland by Jenna Bass with Faith Baloyi, Nicole Fortuin, Izel Bezuidenhout. South Africa / Luxemburg / Germany – World premiere
Flesh Out by Michela Occhipinti with Verida Beitta Ahmed Deiche, Amal Saad Bouh Oumar, Aichetou Abdallahi Najim, Sidi Mohamed Chighaly. Italy – Debut film, World premiere
Greta by Armando Praça with Marco Nanini, Denise Weinberg, Demick Lopes, Gretta Sttar. Brazil – Debut film, World premiere
Hellhole by Bas Devos with Willy Thomas, Alba Rohrwacher, Lubna Azabal, Hamza Belarbi. Belgium / Netherlands – World premiere
Jessica Forever by Caroline Poggi and Jonathan Vinel with Aomi Muyock, Sebastian Urzendowsky, Augustin Raguenet, Lukas Ionesco, Eddy Suiveng, Paul Hamy, Maya Coline. France – Debut film, European premiere
Kislota (Acid) by Alexander Gorchilin with Filipp Avdeev, Alexander Kuznetsov, Arina Shevtsova, Alexandra Rebenok, Savva Saveliev. Russian Federation – Debut film, International premiere
Lemebel by Joanna Reposi Garibaldi. Chile / Colombia – Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Light of My Life by Casey Affleck with Anna Pniowsky, Casey Affleck, Elisabeth Moss. USA – Debut film, World premiere
Mid90s by Jonah Hill with Sunny Suljic, Lucas Hedges, Katherine Waterston, Na-Kel Smith, Olan Prenatt. USA – Debut film, European premiere
Midnight Traveler by Hassan Fazili und Emelie Mahdavian. USA / United Kingdom / Qatar / Canada – Debut film, Panorama Dokumente, International premiere
Los miembros de la familia (Family Members) by Mateo Bendesky with Tomás Wicz, Laila Maltz, Alejandro Russek. Argentina – World premiere
Monos by Alejandro Landes with Julianne Nicholson, Moisés Arias, Sofia Buenaventura, Julián Giraldo, Karen Quintero. Colombia / Argentina / Netherlands / Denmark / Sweden / Germany / Uruguay / USA – European premiere
Normal by Adele Tulli. Italy / Sweden – Debut film, Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
O Beautiful Night by Xaver Böhm with Noah Saavedra, Marko Mandić, Vanessa Loibl. Germany – Debut film, World premiere
Šavovi (Stitches) by Miroslav Terzić with Snežana Bogdanović, Marko Baćović, Jovana Stojiljković. Serbia / Slovenia / Croatia / Bosnia and Herzegovina – World premiere
Schönheit & Vergänglichkeit (Beauty and Decay) by Annekatrin Hendel. Germany – Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Searching Eva by Pia Hellenthal. Germany – Debut film, Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Selfie by Agostino Ferrente. France / Italy – Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Serendipity by Prune Nourry. USA – Debut film – Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
The Shadow Play by Lou Ye with Jing Boran, Song Jia, Qin Hao, Ma Sichun. People’s Republic of China – European premiere
Shooting the Mafia by Kim Longinotto. Ireland / USA – Panorama Dokumente, European premiere
Skin by Guy Nattiv with Jamie Bell, Danielle Macdonald, Vera Farmiga, Bill Camp, Mike Colter, USA – European premiere
The Souvenir by Joanna Hogg with Honor Swinton Byrne, Tom Burke, Tilda Swinton. UK – European premiere
Staff Only by Neus Ballús with Sergi López, Elena Andrada, Ian Samsó, Diomaye A. Ngom, Madeleine C. Ndong. Spain / France – World premiere
Système K (System K) by Renaud Barret. France – Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Talking About Trees by Suhaib Gasmelbari. France / Sudan / Germany / Chad / Qatar – Debut film, Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
Temblores (Tremors) by Jayro Bustamante with Juan Pablo Olyslager, Mauricio Armas Zebadúa, Diane Bathen, María Telón. Guatemala / France / Luxemburg – World premiere
To thávma tis thálassas ton Sargassón (The Miracle of the Sargasso Sea) by Syllas Tzoumerkas with Angeliki Papoulia, Youla Boudali, Christos Passalis, Argyris Xafis, Thanasis Dovris. Greece / Germany / Netherlands / Sweden – World premiere
Western Arabs by Omar Shargawi. Denmark / Netherlands – Panorama Dokumente, World premiere
What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael by Rob Garver with Sarah Jessica Parker, Quentin Tarantino, Alec Baldwin, David O. Russell, Paul Schrader. USA – Debut film, Panorama Dokumente, International premiere
Woo Sang (Idol) by Lee Su-jin with Han Seok-kyu, Seol Kyung-gu, Chun Woo-hee. South Korea – World premiere