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Berlin: Larrain’s Competition Pic ‘Club’ Inks Pacts for France and U.K.

Pic marks Larrain’s follow-up to “No”

In the run-up to its world premiere Feb. 9 in Berlin, Paris-based Funny Balloons has closed two key major territories — France (Wild Bunch Distribution) and the U.K. (Network Releasing) — on Berlin competition player “The Club,” directed by Chile’s Pablo Larrain (“No,” “Tony Manero”).

Described by Funny Balloons’ Peter Danner as “a powerful drama with the tension of a thriller,” and shot under the radar in Chile, “The Club” turns on four men who live together in a secluded house in a small, seaside town. Each of them has been sent to this place to purge sins from the past. They live according to a strict regime under the watchful eye of a female caretaker, when the fragile stability of their routine is disrupted by the arrival of a fifth man, a newly disgraced companion.

Lending “The Club” immediate social point, the five men are priests.

“I was raised in Catholic schools. Of the priests I met, some have remained honorable, respectable. Some are in jail or have legal issues. And some are lost. This is about the lost ones,” Larrain told Variety, adding that “The Club” was about “love, passion, redemption.”

“The Club” marks Larrain’s follow-up to the Oscar nominated “No,” which starred Gael Garcia Bernal. That pic won the top Art Cinema Award at Cannes 2012 Directors’ Fortnight.

Larrain will be joined on the red carpet in Berlin by regular collaborator Alfredo Castro, the lead of “Tony Manero,” plus actor Roberto Farias, and producer Juan de Dios Larrain, who also produced Berlin best actress winner “Gloria,” also sold by Funny Balloons and a sales hit at Berlin.

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