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39th Sundance Film Festival 2023


The Sundance Film Festival will take place from 19 to 29 January, 2023. It is the most important North American festival in the independent sector and is organized by the Sundance Institute, which was founded in 1981 by Robert Redford. The festival is a springboard especially for upcoming directors in the independent film sector. The lineup includes a German animation, documentary and short film.

The documentary 5 SEASONS OF REVOLUTION by Lina (DE/SY/NL/NO, No Nation Films) will be seen in the Documentary World Competition section. As a young independent female video reporter, Lina explores the world through the lens of her camera. She finds clarity in reporting. But as the uprising begins in Syria, and she starts reporting, working in disguise, using aliases and concealed cameras in different cities in Syria, clarity becomes impossible even to Lina. She and her close group of female friends engage in acts of peaceful dissidence alongside the larger movement. One by one, she and her friends are detained and intimidated. Lina continues to report and document for years while she loses friends around her, including those who flee the country. While Lina rushes to continue documenting the armed struggle, she is detained and held captive, and she bears witness to unspeakable suffering, and barely survives. From an independent energized reporter to a mature filmmaker Lina fights isolation, darkness and confinement. In Europe she rewrites the testimony of her own history. She narrates not with the voice of a reporter, but that of an author.

The Kids section will feature the animation film THE AMAZING MAURICE by Toby Genkel (DE/UK, Studio Rakete). Maurice, a streetwise cat, has the perfect money-making scam. He’s found a stupid-looking kid who plays a pipe, and his very own plague of rats – rats who, strangely, are educated and literate, so Maurice can no longer think of them as “lunch”. And everyone knows the stories about rats and pipers ... However, when Maurice and the rodents reach the stricken town of Bad Blintz, their little con goes down the drain. For someone there is playing a different tune. A dark, shadowy tune. Something very, very bad is waiting in the cellars. But Maurice wouldn’t be Maurice if he and his friends didn’t manage to save the day in the end!

The short film THE KIDNAPPING OF THE BRIDE by Sophia Mocorrea (Filmuniversity Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF) will be shown in the Short Film Program section. Luisa from Buenos Aires and Fred from Brandenburg have a unique relationship in which they’ve created their own universe. At their wedding, the two lovers are increasingly confronted with their social roles and intercultural prejudices. In the maelstrom of the night, they lose their sovereignty and each other. The tradition of the kidnapping of the bride, still an integral part of many weddings in German-speaking countries, finally shatters the couple's equality. There is no room for love in this claustrophobic role play of marriage.