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2020 Berlin Intl. Film Festival Top 5

Film Festivals

2020 Berlin Intl. Film Festival: Nicholas Bell’s Top 5 Most Anticipated Films

2020 Berlin Intl. Film Festival: Nicholas Bell’s Top 5 Most Anticipated Films

For its 70th edition, the Berlinale begins a new era by adding some new categories (mainly the newly minted Encounters program, a competition for edgier material from a range of new directors to noted auteurs), while also inviting some new names to the fold (Philippe Garrel!) while also continuing to be a homing beacon for many a returning director (Ferrara, Potter, Sang-soo, Petzold, Delepine & Kervern, to name a few, are all returning to the program). Here’s a glance at our five most anticipated titles of the 2020 edition:

#5. My Little Sister
A decade has passed since Swiss directing duo Stephanie Chuat and Veronique Reymond’s underrated debut The Little Bedroom premiered in 2010—they’ve returned with a drama starring Nina Hoss, Marthe Keller and Lars Eidinger. >>> Screenings

#4. DAU.Natasha
Russia’s Ilya Khrzhanovsky infamously spent over a decade on the project Dau, what started as a biopic on Soviet physicist Lev Landau…and then morphed into something inextricable. Released as an art installation in 2019 in Paris after thousands of hours of footage were cobbled together to make a variety of differently formatted projects, Khrzhanovsky and co-director Jekaterina Oertel have fashioned what seems to be a chapter from the sprawling epic with DAU.Natasha, which is already primed to be the most controversial Golden Bear contender (with rumors about some incredibly graphic sequences), plus a Special Screening documentary DAU.Degeneration on the process of the film.
>>> Screenings

#3. Undine
Christian Petzold was just on hand at the Berlinale in 2018 with Transit and he’s already back with the two leads from his last title (Paula Beer; Franz Rogowski) to star in Undine, a contemporary retelling of the myth about a siren who lures men to no place good. Petzold are competing for the Golden Bear.
>>> Screenings

#2. All the Dead Ones
Director Marco Dutra teams with Caetano Gotardo for his next directorial effort following 2017’s Good Manners with what promises to be a period piece exploring Brazil’s dark past in All the Dead Ones. Dutra and Gotardo are competing for the Golden Bear.
>>> Screenings

#1. My Salinger Year
At number one is the fest’s opener, My Salinger Year from director Philippe Falardeau, which is headlined by Sigourney Weaver and Margaret Qualley. Based on a 2014 memoir by Joanna Rakoff, it’s the first theatrical appearance of Weaver since her 2016 stints in Walter Hill’s The Assignment and J.A. Bayona’s A Monster Calls—of note, Weaver’s title Snow Cake opened the 2006 edition of the Berlinale. The film is a Special Screening.
>>> Screenings

Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is IONCINEMA.com's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), FIPRESCI, the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2023: The Beast (Bonello) Poor Things (Lanthimos), Master Gardener (Schrader). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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