Director: Burhan Qurbani Run Time: 183 min. Rating: NR Release Year: 2021
Starring: Albrecht Schuch, Annabelle Mandeng, Jella Haase, Welket Bungué
Country: Germany, Netherlands, France, Canada
Language: Soninke, Portuguese, German, English
Presented in our Virtual Screening Room in partnership with Kino Lorber.
“Energetic, colorful, violent and sexual… shows how much the Germany of 2020 resembles that of the 1920s.”
– Stéphane du Mesnildot for Busan International Film Festival
About the film:
Official Selection of Berlinale, Istanbul, Busan, and Stockholm Film Festivals. Winner of five German Film Awards and Best Original Score at the 2020 European Film Awards. A modern reinterpretation of Alfred Döblin’s innovative 1929 novel.
After surviving the perilous journey from Guinea-Bissau, Francis vows to be a good man, but he soon realizes how difficult it is to be righteous while undocumented in Germany – without papers, without a nationality, and without a work permit. When he receives an enticing offer for easy money from the psychopathic gangster Reinhold, Francis initially resists temptation, but eventually he is sucked into Berlin’s underworld and his life spirals out of control.
About the filmmaker:
In 1979, Director Burhan Qurbani’s parents fled Afghanistan as victims of political persecution. He was born in 1980 and grew up in various German cities due to his father’s work for the US army.
After gaining experience at the Staatstheater Stuttgart and the Stadttheater Hannover, he began a degree in fiction directing at the Film Academy Baden-Württemberg in 2002. His critically acclaimed graduation film, Faith, following the lives of three German-born Muslims, screened in competition at the 2010 Berlinale. His second feature, We Are Young. We Are Strong., recounting the violent anti-immigrant riots in 1992 Germany, screened in the Viewpoints section of the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival.
Qurbani first read Alfred Döblin’s influential novel in his late teens and spent seven years developing Berlin Alexanderplatz. Hear from the director on adapting the story with a modern, postcolonial lens in an interview for Cineuropa.See all virtual titles