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52nd Berlinale has German flavor

'Iris,' 'Shipping News' in competish; Chaplin's 'Great Dictator' closes fest

BERLIN — Lasse Hallstrom’s “The Shipping News” and “Iris” from British director Richard Eyre are among the 22 pics in competition at next month’s 52nd Berlin Intl. Film Festival, whose lineup this year leans markedly towards home-grown fare.

Marking Dieter Kosslick’s debut as festival director, the representation of German pics is unsurprisingly high: the fest topper has made no secret that his tenure would see a sharper focus on local productions, in distinct contrast to his predecessor Moritz de Hadeln.

“Grill Point” (“Halbe Treppe”), about two couples whose dreary life in the sleepy eastern city of Frankfurt an der Oder is turned upside down by an unexpected romance, is Andreas Dresen’s second pic to be selected for competition at the Berlinale following 1999’s “Night Shapes” (“Nachtgestalten”). Other German works in competition include “Baader” by Christopher Roth about West German terrorist Andreas Baader, and “A Map Of The Heart” (“Der Felsen”) by Dominik Graf.

Tom Tykwer’s English-lingo debut, “Heaven,” starring Cate Blanchett and based on a screenplay by late Polish filmmaker Krzystzof Kieslowski, is opening the festival.

Also in competition is Paul Greengrass’ U.K.-Irish coproduction “Bloody Sunday,” based on Don Mullan’s novel “Eyewitness Bloody Sunday,” about the fateful January clashes in Northern Irish town of Derry in 1972.

For the first time in years, Greece and Hungary are being represented in Berlin with two world premieres: “One Day in August” (“Dekapentavgoustos”) by Constantinos Giannaris and “Temptations” (“Kisertesek”) by Hungarian helmer Zoltan Kamondi. “One Day in August” follows an adolescent burglar (Kostas Kotsianidis) who unwittingly uncovers the dark and secret sides of people whose homes he burglarizes. Kamondi’s pic examines a young man (Marcel Miklos) attempting to find his place in the world.

Australia’s “Beneath Clouds,” Ivan Sen’s look at a young girl who discovers her sense of belonging to two cultures, and Silvio Soldini’s Italian-Swiss coproduction “Burning in the Wind” (“Brucio nel Vento”), about a young man who seeks love after committing a crime, also are competing.

Junji Sakamoto’s Japanese-Korean pic “KT,” about the 1973 abduction of South Korean opposition politician Kim Dae-Jung, and Japanese animated film “Spirited Away” (“Sen To Chihiro No Kamikakushi”) by Hayao Miyazaki are likewise in the running.

Spain is represented by the world premiere of “Stones” (“Piedras”), Ramon Salazar’s pic about five women, five men and their relationships. Israeli director Amos Kollek’s “Bridget,” a French-Japanese coproduction about a young woman seeking to forget her past, also will be making its international premiere. A total of 18 pics will be having their world premiere at the 52nd Berlinale.

Previously named selections include “The Royal Tenenbaums,” “Monster’s Ball,” and Constantin Costa-Gavras’ “Amen.”

Ron Howard’s “A Beautiful Mind” as well as Jurij Illenko’s Ukrainian pic “A Prayer for Hetman Mazepa” (“Molitva Za Getmana Mazepu”), about the pact between the Ukrainian Hetman Mazepa and the Swedish king against the Czar during the 18th-century Russian-Swedish War, are among the nine entries running out of competition.

Special gala screenings will be held for some out-of-competion films, including Milos Forman’s revamped “Amadeus – The Director’s Cut” as well as Alexander Kluge’s 1979 pic “The Patriot” (“Die Patriotin”). The Berlinale will close on Feb. 17 with a special screening of a new print of Charles Chaplin’s satire of the Third Reich “The Great Dictator.”

52nd Berlinale Competition Selections

“Heaven” dir. Tom Tykwer (opening film)

“A Map of the Heart” (“Der Felsen”) dir. Dominik Graf

“Amen” dir. Constantin Costa-Gavras

“Baader” dir. Christophe Roth

“Bad Guy” (“Na-Bbun-Nam-Ja”) dir. Kim Ki-duk

“Beneath Clouds” dir. Ivan Sen

“Bloody Sunday” dir. Paul Greengrass

“Bridget” dir. Amos Kollek

“Burning in the Wind” (“Brucio Nel Vento”) dir. Silvio Soldini

“Eight Women” (“Huit Femmes”) dir. Francois Ozon

“Grill Point” (“Halbe Treppe”) dir. Andreas Dresen

“KT” dir. Junji Sakamoto

“Minor Mishaps” (“Sma Ulykker”) dir. Annette K. Olesen

“Monday Morning” (“Lundi Matin”) dir. Otar Iosseliani

“Monster’s Ball” dir. Marc Forster

“One Day in August” (“Dekanpentavgoustos”) Constantinos Giannaris

“The Royal Tenenbaums” dir. Wes Anderson

“Safe Conduct” (“Laissez-Passer”) dir. Bertrand Tavernier

“The Shipping News” dir. Lasse Hallstrom

“Spirited Away” dir. Hayao Miyazaki

“Stones” (“Piedras”) dir. Ramon Salazar Hoogers

“Temptations” (“Kisertesek”) dir. Zoltan Kamondi

Berlinale Out of Competition Selections

“Amadeus – Director’s Cut” dir. Milos Forman

“A Beautiful Mind” dir. Ron Howard

“Gosford Park” dir. Robert Altman

“The Great Dictator” dir. Charles Chaplin

“Happy Times” dir. Zhang Yimou

“The Patriot” (“Die Patriotin”) dir. Alexander Kluge

“A Prayer for Hetman Mazepa” (“Molitva Za Getmana Mazepu”) dir. Jurij Illenko

“Taking Sides” dir. Istvan Szabo

“Viel Passiert – Der BAP Film” dir. Wim Wenders

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