Unlike the Cannes Film Festival, screenings at the Berlin Film Festival are open to the public, although you have to queue for the hot tickets – sometimes all night. And then there is the problem of deciding what to see.
Film fans note that in order to see as many films as possible, they have to work out running times and film lengths very carefully.
But attendees said they enjoyed the festival because it was an opportunity to see something different: “Here, you can see films from Eastern Europe and the whole world, in these movies you see the way people live, their problems, and their stories.”
‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’, directed by Wes Anderson, opened the event.
‘The Monuments Men’, directed by and staring George Clooney, was shown out of competition. It is the story of the experts who attempted to track down cultural artifacts looted during World War II.
German movie ‘Beloved Sisters’, set in 1788, explores the triangular affair between German poet Friedrich Schiller with two sisters. At first, it works but then one sister gets pregnant and the triangle is troubled.
Controversial director Lars von Trier showed his new film ‘Nymphomaniac Volume I’ which once again includes scenes which are unlikely to be shown in mainstream cinemas.
Four hundred different films will be screened over the 11 days of the festival, but only 20 films are in the running for the main prize, the Golden Bear.