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Angela Schanelec: Showing without Telling

Angela Schanelec: Showing without Telling

Angela Schanelec might very well be the best kept secret of the so-called “Berlin School” of filmmakers. A contemporary of Christian Petzold, Christoph Hochhäusler, Thomas Arslan and Maren Ade, she remains one of the founding figures of the unofficial movement, triggered by a necessity of a new cinema that would witness and delve into Germany’s societal changes and identity reconstruction after the fall of the Wall. Schanelec’s films discreetly compose one of the most coherent, compact bodies of work in contemporary cinema, resonating with powerful observation, restrained emotional landscapes, and a methodical use of expressive film language. Interested in the ineffable side of human relationships and the bits in our lives that fall through the cracks, Schanelec takes an austere, fragmented approach to reality and the multiple ways in which the world displays its mysterious nature. Her films have a formal rigor that brings Robert Bresson or Chantal Akerman to mind, but with a serenity and elusiveness entirely of her own.

MARSEILLE

Angela Schanelec Germany, 2004

While trying to grasp the mysterious nature of a world ruled by chance with impressive formal precision, Marseille oozes with serene ambiguity revealing the almost ethereal soul of Angela Schanelec’s work. A quietly radical drama that experiments with cinema’s narrative tools to hypnotic effect.

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AFTERNOON

Angela Schanelec Germany, 2007

Angela Schanelec’s film generously lets us piece together relationships, family drama and love’s hurt through oblique observation and heart-felt restraint. A sun-drenched snapshot of a subtly distraught summer holiday, shared between lakeside neighbors.

PASSING SUMMER

Angela Schanelec Germany, 2001

Tender and enigmatic, Angela Schanelec’s drama reveals a group of friends, family and lovers dispersed yet connected as people yearning for fulfillment. From one of the most important and beguiling, yet under-seen contemporary directors.

THE DREAMED PATH

Angela Schanelec Germany, 2016

Through Bressonian fragmentation, the Berlin School auteur Angela Schanelec delivers a puzzling, elliptical anti-love story, and keeps challenging our notion of narrative with her radical, quietly masterful filmmaking.

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