Hollywood comes to Berlin at the 64th Berlin International Film Festival: The Berlinale, 2014.

The Berlin International Film Festival: The Berlinale.
The Berlin International Film Festival: The Berlinale.

Wow! We have had a long, fantastic fortnight of films, films, and yes more films.

That’s right. From the 6th of February to the 16th February, 2014, Berlin has been packed solid with members of the film industry.

It makes me proud that Berlin is competing with the likes of other film festivals in Cannes and Sundance. Alright, not in the same category, but still, a festival to be proud of and with more than four hundred films, ten sections and almost half a million cinema visits, the Berlinale is not only an independent film festival with a difference but also the world’s largest film festival that people can actually visit.

Yes, that means YOU!

The Grand Budapest Hotel with Bill Murray: at the Opening Gala. Berlinale 2014
The Grand Budapest Hotel with Bill Murray: at the Opening Gala.
Berlinale 2014

All the top guys like Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Willem Dafoe, Edward Norton, John Hurt, John Lithgow, Jeff Goldblum, Ralph Fiennes, Christoph Waltz, Ken Loach, Patricia Arquette, Michelle Yeoh, Cillian Murphy, Jennifer Connolly, Forest Whitaker, Wes Anderson and Martin Scorsese, were all here and then it all went crazy when the stars of “The Monuments Men” such as: George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Hugh Bonneville (of Downton Abbey fame), and Cate Blanchett came to town.

Bill Murray, George Clooney, Matt Damon & John Goodman. Press Conference at "The Monuments Men." The Berlinale, 2014
Bill Murray, George Clooney, Matt Damon & John Goodman. Press Conference at “The Monuments Men.”
The Berlinale, 2014

I mean, it really did go insane.

The actors were professional and charming but everybody else just lost it with star-lust, over-whelmingness, or the fact that film premier tickets could not be found for love or money. If you didn’t know somebody, who knew somebody, who knew somebody, way up there, chances were, you wouldn’t get a look in!

We love you Georgie! The Berlinale, 2014.
We love you Georgie!
The Berlinale, 2014.

Well, “The Music Producer” is a bit of a geek as far as the Berlin International Film Festival is concerned. Oh My God! My husband watched thirty films! Thirty films in ten days! Craaaaaaazy!!! If you would like to read his insight of the film festival then check out this link in German, but if you can’t read German, feel free to take a look at the art cinema photos instead.

As for me, being that I’m actually a sane person, I only took in five movies watched over just a mere three days. I would have liked to have seen more but someone has got to keep the home hearth burning.

Having said that “The Tall Young Gentleman” had a Boy Scout “Lock-In weekend” so I used that opportunity to go to town. I watched:

Zone Pro Site: The Moveable Feast. The Berlinale, 2014
Zone Pro Site: The Moveable Feast.
The Berlinale, 2014
  • Zone Pro Site: The Moveable Feast – This film was hilarious. It was a comedy about the Taiwanese tradition of catering to the public and cooking. Honestly, it made me salivate with hunger as they had close-ups of exotic dishes, chopped, sliced, mixed and cooked to perfection. It also focused on lollipop girls, a pair of under-world scammers, old culinary masters, Taiwanese villages and towns, and a bunch of internet geeks. Oh, and a Taiwanese version of Beyonce’s “All The Single Ladies” performed by a 50-something mother and cook! I would love to watch it again 🙂

She's Lost Control. The Berlinale, 2014.

  • She’s Lost Control – This film was a complex, stylistic directorial debut of an American director and script writer, who also calls Berlin her home. This movie was about a sexual surrogate who taught troubled men how to be intimate and how the line between professional and private intimacy became blurred and uncertain. After the film, we were lucky enough to have the directors, producers, and main actress on stage so that we could ask questions. Of which there were many, as this film inspired discussion and debate and will be at a cinema near you. In Berlin.
Pădurea e ca muntele, vezi? | The Forest is Like the Mountains. The Berlinale, 2014.
Pădurea e ca muntele, vezi? | The Forest is Like the Mountains.
The Berlinale, 2014.
  • Pădurea e ca muntele, vezi? | The Forest is Like the Mountains – I really liked this film. It was a Romanian movie directed by two young German/Belgian artists. It was about a Roma village and centered around the Lingurar family where the villagers lived off the land. It was really interesting seeing how they ate, slept and lived. It was very endearing I must say and I think there was rather a lot of interest in the traditional ways of the Roma people. The film also touched the topic of how difficult things were and are in a modern age, bearing in mind the many controversial European politics of thoughts of how to slow down the free movement of Roma people within the European Union. The film was documentary style in which we saw horses and carts, the harvesting of potatoes and ordinary family life and struggles. Again, I was lucky enough to be at the premiere of this film in which the main actors and the directors were present. I even got to be able to stand-up and ask the actors a question. In public!

Top Girl or la déformation professionnelle. The Berlinale, 2014.

  • Top Girl oder la déformation professionnelle – I picked this movie ‘cos it was made in Berlin but I wasn’t really impressed and I didn’t like it. I don’t really know what I was expecting but people were either walking out, tittering, talking over the voice screen, or coughing awkwardly. Halfway through the film, I fell asleep! It was part II of the “Woman and Work” trilogy and showed the everyday life of Mascha, a frustrated actress who also worked as a high-class escort. Once again, the director and main actors came on stage and Q & A’s took place. The movie was provocative but was successful in getting a debate going I guess, as at one point, some of the viewers got into a quarrel with one of the main actors!
Highway. The Berlinale, 2014.
Highway.
The Berlinale, 2014.
  • Highway – This movie is a film made in India. I liked it very much. It was shocking, compelling and emotional. The movie is about the daughter of a wealthy entrepreneur who is kidnapped in Delhi, a few days before her wedding! This film really touched my presence and had me gasping and grabbing the hand of “The Music Producer” a few times. I was a little worried as this is not your typical song and dance movie but was rather cruel in moments and even though I love the Indian sub-continent, recent media speculation has not been positive as this road movie also reflects on the issue of rape in Indian society. This movie by all accounts is a modern Bollywood film with fantastic visuals of India’s wide and varied landscapes from Rajasthan to the Himalayan mountains, and a film about finding who you truely are. If you ever get the chance to see it, I suggest you do so. There were no directors or actors this time but I did manage to bump into an ex-teacher of mine who is another expat in Berlin (albeit American!) and also an up and coming artist and whom I haven’t seen for at least 10 years. He recognised me purely by my sharp British tone of voice!

And there you have it. The end of the 64th Berlin International Film Festival – The Berlinale, 2014. I hope you get to watch some of the movies too.

For more information contact: The Berlinale.

A Homage for the Honorary Golden Bear - Ken Loach. The Berlinale, 2014.
A Homage for the Honorary Golden Bear – Ken Loach.
The Berlinale, 2014.

This article is not sponsored and all opinions are my absolute own.

Going to a Film Festival is an awesome experience. Which festival have you been to of late? Which of these category of films would you watch?

Have your say!

If you like this article, share it!

On the red carpet at the Internationale Filmfestspiele, Berlin or at the International Film Festival, Berlin.
On the red carpet at the Internationale Filmfestspiele, Berlin or at the International Film Festival, Berlin.
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12 thoughts on “Hollywood comes to Berlin at the 64th Berlin International Film Festival: The Berlinale, 2014.

  1. Nice blog! Looks like you had fun on the red carpet. I have never heard of any of these films, but based on what you wrote, l need to see Highway and Moveable Feast. They sound like fun.

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    1. Thank you so much kemkem. It’s a pleasure to be a part of the blogging world 🙂 We’re so lucky here in Berlin as we get the opportunity to do exciting things and meet interesting people and it’s sooooo much fun LOL!

      The Berlinale however, is pre-dominately for independent films with a sprinkle of top Hollywood Royalty. Don’t worry if you haven’t heard of any of the films. They can be usually be seen in “Art” cinemas and both “Highway” and “The Moveable Feast” are, I would say, must sees!

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  2. I love film festivals and I must admit that I could probably also get a little star-struck, face-to-face with George Clooney:) I’d love to watch Highway, sounds like my kind of movie:)

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    1. Thanks so much Mitzie and thank you for following me. Film festivals are fantastic and we’re so lucky in Berlin.
      We all love Clooney as he’s a real good actor and a strong supporter of film-making here.

      Yes,”Highway” is a film that I highly recommend. Bring tissues!

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  3. Hey girl – strut your stuff on that red carpet! So many great movies are made around the world that many never get to see. Looked like a great Film Festival to help promote them.

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    1. Thank you Phil! I’m strutting my good man. I’m strutting! Yeah, the film festival was a really good bash and truely as you say, many of those films will never see the light of day in main-stream cinemas. It was pretty nice to either be at the premier or to see something from the early 20th century that had been digitally re-mastered.

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