Film critic predicts this year’s top Berlin International Film Festival screenings

by Bob Deutsch

Film critic predicts this year's top Berlin International Film Festival screenings

Actors, directors and industry experts are all preparing for the 63rd annual Berlin International Film Festival beginning tomorrow. The festival will run until the 17th and is known for its somber, intense movies. The festival is also known for having a number of international premiers, including “Dark Blood” featuring the late River Phoenix. One film critic also shared with the International Business Times other movies that may be receiving a lot of attention this year.

According to Justine Costanza, one potential winner could be “Side Effects,” featuring Rooney Mara and Channing Tatum. The film is about Mara’s character’s anxiety after her husband returns home from prison. The movie is expected to be the last of Oscar-winning director Steven Soderbergh​’s career. Soderbergh, who directed Erin Brockovich, Ocean’s Eleven and Traffic, is expected to focus on painting and other art forms after this film’s release.

Another potential festival highlight, according to Costanza, is director Jarfar Panahi’s “Closed Curtain.” Panahi, she explains, “was famously banned from making films for 20 years after the Iranian government determined that he was trying to undermine the country’s authority. Yet somehow he was able to complete ‘This is Not a Film’ in 2011 and smuggle it to Cannes inside of a birthday cake.” In a similar fashion, no one knows what Closed Curtain is going to be about.

Lastly, Costanza suggests “The Grandmaster” directed by Wong Kar-wai. This film is about the life of martial artist Ip Man, played by Tony Leung.

Film festivals, such as the Berlin International Film Festival, have been growing in popularity, with more organizations producing festivals every year, USA Today reported last month. With so many to compete with, some are turning to alternative ways of screening films, such as the Beloit International Film Festival’s use of outdoor movie screens, or additional forms of technology, such as Palo Alto International Film Festival’s use of a mobile app to ask viewers trivia questions after films.


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