Monday, February 16, 2009
Berlin journal #1
I told people that I had no expectations coming to Berlin, but I must have been lying, for as I sat in the lobby of the International cinema looking out the window to the gathering dusk outside, a sense of depression came over me. Perhaps it was the austere Soviet era decor of the cinema, or the wide boulevard filled with concrete blocks outside, but the overwhelming feeling I had was: 'Is this it?' This is what I had been waiting for my entire life, the chance to show my work at one of the Big Three international film festivals, and here I was, at the world premiere of my latest film, and it hit me that it was just a festival.
Was I expecting fans? Photographers? I don't know. Soon the film ended and I went back into the cinema. The presenter called the director of the short that preceded mine on stage. After a couple of questions he called me to go on. Nobody asked any questions except the presenter's friend, who "praised" the film by saying that it is melodramatic, which is somethings Germans don't usually see on film. I was taken aback, and mumbled that my film is probably closer to Fasbinder than Ozu on the melodrama scale (whatever that means). With that inane exchange the Q&A was over and I went to have dinner with my German distributors.