Art & Experience: Retrospective to include around 20 East and West German feature and documentary films from cinema and television. The Retrospective of the 66th Berlin International Film Festival (Feb 11-21) is to be dedicated to the year 1966, a year considered to be a turning point in German cinema. “The year 1966 stands for extraordinary films in the West and the East, films which broke new artistic ground,” said Berlinale festival director Dieter Kosslick. “The Retrospective 2016 shows the audacious revolt and tentative exploration in a time of transition.”
The strand will include around 20 East and West German feature and documentary films from cinema and television. Additionally, more than 30 films of short and medium length – a typical format at the time – will feature in film programmes and as supporting films.
In 1966, the New German Cinema wave received critical acclaim at major film festivals for the first time.
At the Berlinale, Peter Schamoni’s debut No Shooting Time for Foxes (Schonzeit für Füchse) won a Silver Bear while Volker Schlöndorff’s Young Törless (Der junge Törless) won the critics prize at Cannes and Alexander Kluge’s Yesterday Girl (Abschied von Gestern) won the Silver Lion at Venice.
By contrast, DEFA productions – the state-owned film studio in East Germany – that openly questioned the contradictions of so-called ‘real existing socialism’, were banned and not seen for years or even decades later.
Two such ‘forbidden films’, Hermann Zschoche’s Carla (Karla) and Jürgen Böttcher’s Born in ’45 (Jahrgang 45)will be shown at the Retrospective.
Presenting these films in their censored versions, as they were when they were aborted, as well as how they were eventually released in 1990, will aim to reveal the discrepancy between the two.
The 66th Berlin International Film Festival will be from 11th to 21st of February.