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Festival brings best new German cinema to Beijing

Updated: 2023-03-27 14:06 ( chinadaily.com.cn )
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The 10th Festival of German Cinema (FGC) in China opens at the Broadway Cinematheque MOMA in Beijing, on March 24, 2023. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

The 2023 Festival of German Cinema in China kicked off at the Broadway Cinematheque MOMA in Beijing on Friday.

“Films are the best ambassadors for cultural exchange. They have the power to create new perspectives, promote mutual understanding and foster dialogue, even in the most challenging times,” said Frank Rueckert, the chargé d'affaires of the German embassy in China, at the opening.

Until April 2, cinephiles of German cinema can flock to two Broadway Cinematheque locations (MOMA and APM) and the Goethe Institute in 798, to enjoy a total of 14 new German films.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the FGC in China, organized by German Films with the support of the Goethe Institute in China and the Broadway Cinemas. Over the last 10 years, the FGC in China, a platform for showcasing the very best of German cinema to audiences in China, has introduced 129 German films of various genres.

According to Anke Redl, representative of German Films in China, this event had been scheduled for 2022 November as part of the celebrations for the 50th anniversary of China-Germany diplomatic ties, but postponed due to COVID-19. Therefore, this festival screens the finest German cinematic works made in both 2021 and 2022, all of which have caused quite a stir at film festivals around the world.

Opening the festival was Rabiye Kurnaz vs George W. Bush, directed by Andreas Dresen, which scooped two Silver Bear awards for best screenplay (Laila Stieler) and the best actress (Meltem Kaplan) at the Berlinale 2022. The film is a true story of a German-Turkish mother’s five-year-long legal battle to free her son Murat Kurnaz, who was unlawfully detained at Guantanamo Bay in 2001.

Other critically-acclaimed films featured at the 2023 FGC in China include The Exam by Shawkat Amin, nominated as the best movie at the 2022 Beijing International Film Festival and Axiom by Jons Jonsson, nominated as the best film for the Encounters section at the 72nd Berlinale.

Actress Huang Yao, star of The Crossing (2018) and The Shadowless Tower (2023), serves as the ambassador of the 10th Festival of German Cinema (FGC) in China. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Chinese actress Huang Yao is the ambassador for this year’s event. Huang rose to fame with her leading role in the 2018 feature The Crossing, which won her the Best Actress of Fei Mu Awards in the 2nd Pingyao Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon International film Festival. She was also the lead actress of director Zhang Lyu’s The Shadowless Tower, which was one of two Chinese-language films competing for top awards at the 73rd Berlinale.

For the closing ceremony on April 2nd, a special screening of three Chinese short films by Cheng Yu, Zhang Dalei, and Zhao Hao, which competed at the 73rd Berlinale, will be held at the Goethe Institute and their directors will be invited to have a Q&A with the audience.

The festival organizers said they plan to stage the next FGC in China at the end of 2023 and will strive to bring the Chinese audience the anti-war epic All Quiet on the Western Front by Edward Berger, which has just hoovered up four Oscar awards.

Click here for more information about the screening schedule and tickets.


Guests pose for a group photo at the opening ceremony of the 10th Festival of German Cinema in China at the Broadway Cinematheque MOMA in Beijing, on March 24, 2023. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
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