ABDO (Deutschland 2015, Jakob Gross, Münchner Premieren). In post-revolutionary Cairo, chaotic situations still prevail. In the midst of them is young Abdo –a revolutionary himself and an ultra football fan. Under the most difficult circumstances, he tries to find himself and his place in a tumultuous society.
AUGUST: A MOMENT BEFORE THE ERUPTION (Frankreich, Israel 2002, Avi Mograbi, Retrospektive). August is the cruellest month. This snapshot of an Israeli summer month takes us into the thick of daily conflicts: racism, fear and despair. A self-deprecating and courageous statement on the state of a nation.
CITIZENFOUR (USA, Deutschland 2014, Laura Poitras, DOK.special). NSA, Tempora, Prism, Merkelgate. Since the revelations made by whistleblower Edward Snowden, the digital world has been transformed. In her Oscar-winning film, director, Laura Poitras, follows the scandal around national surveillance programmes and portrays a young man who has the uncompromising courage to stand up for his beliefs.
DEMOCRATS (Dänemark 2014, Camilla Nielsson, DOK.international). From 2009 to 2012 Camilla Nielsson followed the process of constitutional reform in Zimbabwe. She has not only drawn a sympathetic portrait of the two politicians in charge but also offers a unique look behind the scenes of the political system.
DIE GEWÄHLTEN – ELECTED (Deutschland 2015, Nancy Brandt, DOK.deutsch). “It is always the men who wish to mark their territory,” teases one of the two female protagonists during their first period of election in the German parliament. The elevated world of Berlin politics is not only a battleground of opinions but also one of gender, beyond party divisions.
DRONE (Norwegen 2014, Tonje Hessen Schei, DOK.panorama). In a barrack in the USA, young men sit with joysticks and kill people. On the other side of the world the young and the old, men and women are dying. DRONE is an impressive document that speaks out against drone and robot wars that have already become part of our everyday lives.
ELEPHANT'S DREAM (Belgien 2014, Kristof Bilsen, DOK.horizonte). A postal worker, a fireman and a railway employee in a strange vacuum in the middle of the vibrant city of Kinshasa. The poetic yet never sugar-coated images that Kristof Bilsen has created around his protagonists draw a never before seen picture of the Democratic Republic of the Congo beyond war, dictatorship and violence.
FANG DEN HAIDER – Catching Haider (Österreich 2015, Nathalie Borgers, DOK.deutsch). How can it be that, despite the corruption scandals he has been associated with, Jörg Haider is portrayed as a hero after his accidental death? Nathalie Borgers goes to investigate in Carinthia. Her discoveries range from the comically bizarre to the strangely vexing.
FREEDOM BUS (Deutschland 2013, Fatima Abdollahyan, DOK.special). How does freedom work? Mubarak’s authoritarian rule lasted almost 30 years. There is a long way to go between its end and a functioning democracy. FREEDOM BUS traces this journey with all its promises and setbacks.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MR. MOGRABI (Frankreich, Israel 1999, Avi Mograbi, Retrospektive). Israel’s 50th anniversary becomes the starting point for a wide variety of stories. With Mograbi’s own birthday approaching and the Israelis celebrating the founding of a nation, the Palestinians mark the “catastrophe” of Israel. A film about the impossibility of making a film in the face of chaos.
HINTERWELTEN – HINTERLAND (Deutschland 2014, Lion Bischof, Jonas Heldt, Felicitas Sonvilla, Student Award). Racing through the streets of the small town on a little moped to the employment agency to ask for a job. Two metal thieves, who scrounge from disused factories to make money. A mother and a daughter speak of the desolation arising from the lack of people here, especially the lack of some sensible men. Wunsiedel on the border to Czech Republic is over, or isn't it?
HOW I LEARNED TO OVERCOME MY FEAR AND LOVE ARIK SHARON (Israel 1997, Avi Mograbi, Retrospektive). What begins as the portrait of a political adversary ends in unwitting admiration: the left-wing intellectual arm in arm with a right-wing general. Perceptive analysis of the art of persuasion and semi-fictional tomfoolery rolled into one.
JE SUIS LE PEUPLE – I AM THE PEOPLE (Frankreich 2014, Anna Roussillon, DOK.international). “Your definition of democracy isn’t the same as mine,” the smallholder, Farraj, explains to the filmmaker, “I want justice for the world.” “If only we could have democracy for breakfast. And for dinner.” The Egyptian revolution seen through the eyes of the rural population.
L'ABRI – THE SHELTER (Schweiz 2014, Fernand Melgar, DOK.panorama). Outside the entrance to the “Bunker” in Lausanne the same scenes play out night after night: jostling crowds, desperation and anger. Only a lucky 50 are allowed into the emergency homeless shelter. Following on from LA FORTERESSE and VOL SPÉCIAL, Fernand Melgar completes his trilogy. Highly emotional, dramatic and contentious.
MADGERMANES (Deutschland 2014, Malte Wandel, Student Award). It has already been almost 25 years, but since then the so-called Madgermanes have been holding demonstrations in Mosambique’s capital, Maputo. They want their money back; money that they earned in the 1980s as contract workers in the GDR. The Mozambican government withheld an estimated 100 million dollars of salary and social insurance transfers from Germany. Alongside their collective struggle against injustice, they are also united by their memories of the time in Germany.