• Germany's news in English
 
Berlinale 2013
Romanian film wins Golden Bear prize
Photo: DPA

Romanian film wins Golden Bear prize

Published: 17 Feb 2013 09:07 GMT+01:00

Director Calin Peter Netzer, a member of Romania's renowned new wave in cinema, tells the story of a wealthy and controlling mother who fights to get her so acquitted after he kills a poor teenager with his car.

"I want to thank the jury for this amazing prize, this wonderful prize," Netzer told the panel led by Chinese director Wong Kar Wai, adding later at a press conference he was "shellshocked" by the honour.

The Berlinale, the first major European film festival of the year and typically its most politically minded, handed two prizes to the Bosnian docu-drama "An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker."

Nazif Mujic, the real-life protagonist of the picture about a Roma couple denied life-saving medical treatment, was the surprise winner of the Silver Bear best actor prize.

The ultra-low-budget film also took the runner-up jury prize. Its director Danis Tanovic, who won an Oscar for his 2001 wartime black comedy "No Man's Land," said his anger after reading news reports about the couple led him to seek them out.

"I'm so happy for Nazif and his family because the whole point of this film

was to try and change their lives and I hope it changes their lives," he told

reporters.

David Gordon Green picked up the Silver Bear best director award for his quirky US buddy picture "Prince Avalanche," a remake of the 2011 Icelandic film "Either Way."

The movie, the only comedy among the 19 contenders at the festival, stars Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch as highway maintenance workers in Texas at crossroads in their lives.

Best actress went to Chile's Paulina Garcia for "Gloria", a feel-good movie about a middle-aged divorcee who refuses to give up on a shot at happiness.

Best screenplay went to "Closed Curtain" by Iranian dissident director Jafar Panahi and his longtime collaborator Kambuzia Partovi, a film made in secret in defiance of a ban by the authorities in Tehran.

"It is impossible to stop a thinker and a poet. Their thoughts bear fruit everywhere," Partovi said, accepting the award because Panahi was not granted permission to travel.

A debut feature from Kazakhstan, the bullying drama "Harmony Lessons," grabbed a Silver Bear for extraordinary artistic achievement for its cinematographer Aziz Zhambakiyev.

And a Canadian thriller about a lesbian couple trying to put their prison past behind them, Denis Cote's "Vic and Flo Saw a Bear", clinched a prize for"a work of particular innovation."

"Child's Pose" figured in an especially strong year for films exposing new fissures and rampant corruption in the former communist bloc.

Lead actress Luminita Gheorghiu, best known for her 2005 dark comedy "The Death of Mr Lazarescu," dazzled movie-goers as a manipulative mother who sees the fatal accident as a chance to reconnect with her estranged son.

Netzer said the story of generational conflict was "universal".

"I think basically this is about a relationship, a kind of pathological relationship between mother and son," he told reporters. "This is a kind of Oedipus complex. Clearly we are referring to Freud."

Producer Ada Solomon said the Golden Bear would give the film a much-needed boost. "I think that Romanian politicians should pay much more attention to the ambassador that our cinema is around the world," she said, slamming subsidy cuts.

"I want to thank those people who didn't help us and didn't support us and that made us more determined."

Critics noted a stand-out year for seasoned actresses at the festival including well-received performances by Catherine Deneuve, Juliette Binoche and Paulina Garcia, who before "Gloria" was known mainly for her work in telenovelas.

"Directors seem to have discovered the value of maturity and been anxious to explore the female face and psyche as they age, gracefully or otherwise," the trade magazine Hollywood Reporter wrote.

AFP/kkf

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

17:37 February 17, 2013 by ChrisRea
Sooner or later the Romanian cinematography had to win the Golden Bear, after regularly winning many other international film awards. The trailer looks very interesting, so I can hardly wait to see the movie.
Today's headlines
'Breakthrough' in train strike: union
Stranded passengers during the train strike Photo: DPA

'Breakthrough' in train strike: union

The head of the train drivers union GDL claimed a "breakthrough" late Wednesday in talks with Deutsche Bahn, which may herald the end of a spate of train strikes which have caused travelling misery and cost the rail operator around 100 million euros. READ  

Opinion
What does Dresden have against Muslims?
The baroque skyline of Dresden Photo: DPA

What does Dresden have against Muslims?

The Pegida movement (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West) was unknown three months ago. Now it's making Dresden famous - for all the wrong reasons. READ  

Amazon strike extended to Saturday
Workers at the Amazon distribution centre in Leipzig. Photo: DPA

Amazon strike extended to Saturday

Union Verdi announced on Wednesday that its members at two Amazon distribution centres would extend a planned three-day strike through the rest of the week, while four more sites saw new walkouts. READ  

Russia in clear over death of German MP
The late German parliamentarian Andreas Schockenhoff Photo: DPA

Russia in clear over death of German MP

A post-mortem on a prominent German MP and critic of Vladimir Putin showed no signs of foul play, prosecutors said Wednesday. READ  

'Tear Down This Plaque' row over GDR sign
Former East German leader and "comrade" Erich Honecker Photo: DPA

'Tear Down This Plaque' row over GDR sign

A historic Berlin museum is facing calls to pull down a plaque commemorating the former East German communist leader Erich Honecker. READ  

'Reform business inheritance tax' court tells MPs
Presiding judge Ferdinand Kirchhof announcing the decision on Wednesday. Photo: DPA

'Reform business inheritance tax' court tells MPs

Judges at the Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe said on Wednesday that the government must change rules reducing tax on inherited family-owned businesses within 18 months. READ  

Cabinet agrees to send 100 army trainers to Iraq
A German soldier training a Kurdish fighter with the German-made G3 rifle. Photo: DPA

Cabinet agrees to send 100 army trainers to Iraq

MPs in the Bundestag will vote in January on a controversial plan to send 100 soldiers to Iraq to train Kurdish fighters battling terrorist group Isis. READ  

Germany's Homer Simpson is actually 85
Image: Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment

Germany's Homer Simpson is actually 85

He might be bald, and fat, but onscreen Homer Simpson doesn't look a day over... let's say 45. Unlike the actor who voices Homer for German audiences who is, in fact, 85 and still going strong. READ  

Greens and Left demand follow-up on US torture
Amnesty International demonstrators during a visit by President Obama to Brussels in March 2014. Photo: DPA

Greens and Left demand follow-up on US torture

Opposition parties are calling for the government to adopt a harsher stance towards the USA after the US Senate published a report into CIA torture last week. READ  

'The Hoff' to star in NYE at Brandenburg Gate
A wax figure of Hasselhoff in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. Photo: DPA

'The Hoff' to star in NYE at Brandenburg Gate

David Hasselhoff will sing to a crowd of hundreds of thousands to see in the New Year at Berlin's Brandenburg Gate - the same spot where he famously sang "Looking for Freedom" after the fall of the Berlin Wall 25 years ago. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Germany's national football team lifts the World Cup trophy
Gallery
Germany's most-Googled words of 2014
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
Photo: DPA
National
This German was abducted and tortured by the CIA
Culture
10 top tips for partying in Germany
Sponsored Article
Top ten gifts for an expat Christmas
Photo: DPA
Technology
What does the Chancellor see as the future of the internet?
Photo: DPA
Culture
Stuff your face with these festive German cookies
Photo: DPA
Culture
What do beer, breakfast cereal and dildos have in common?
Culture
The Local's guide to German Christmas markets
Sponsored Article
Top five quirky Christmas jumpers
Photo: DPA
Culture
Get ready for Christmas like a German. We tell you how.
Photo: DPA
Munich
She did what with her dead mother?
Photo: DPA
National
Germany still paying for crisis fall out
Photo: DPA
Culture
Saxon wurst is the worst, Christmas market declares.
Photo: DPA
Politics
Can 'sorry' ever be enough for the Linke?
Sponsored Article
Shop Christmas gifts at Debenhams international store
Sponsored Article
Ever wanted to try out home exchange?
Photo: DPA
Berlin
The Local's series on 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall
Shutterstock
Sponsored Article
Offer: Unlimited airmiles through December 19th
Photo: DPA
Gallery
See how Berlin has changed in 22 photos
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,167
jobs available
The Local Spain is hiring!
The Local is seeking a new editor for our site in Spain to join our growing team of internationally-minded, driven, ambitious and clued-up journalists.
Details and how to apply
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd