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Berlinale 2012. Brillante Mendoza's "Captive" Among First Competition Films

More world premieres from Antonio Chavarrías, Edwin, Werner Herzog and Kevin Macdonald.
David Hudson
The DailyCaptive

The Berlin International Film Festival has just announced the first five films lined up for the Competition and five more for the Berlinale Special. The 62nd edition runs from February 9 through 19.

Update: The Berlinale's also announced that the members of the International Jury, presided over by Mike Leigh, will be Anton Corbijn, Asghar Farhadi, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Jake Gyllenhaal, François Ozon, Boualem Sansal and Barbara Sukowa.



France/Philippines/Germany/Great Britain
By Brillante Mendoza (Serbis, Kinatay, Lola)
With Isabelle Huppert, Katherine Mulville, Marc Zanetta
World premiere

From Ioncinema: "Based on a real-life event that occurred in 2001. It centers on Thérèse Bourgoin (Huppert), a French woman who works for a humanitarian organization on Palawan Island in the Philippines. While she is transporting equipment to Puerto Princesa, she is kidnapped by mistake with a colleague by Muslim extremist group Abu Sayyaf, who are fighting for Mindanao independence."


Dictado (Childish Games)
By Antonio Chavarrías (Susanna, Volverás, Las vidas de Celia)
With Juan Diego Botto, Barbara Lennie, Mágica Pérez
World premiere

Summary of a Google-translated synopsis: When Julia is orphaned, Daniel, a friend of her father, and his wife Laura take her in. But Julia begins to unsettle Daniel, threatening to reveal a long-buried past. (Thanks, Diego!)
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
By Stephen Daldry (Billy Elliot, The Hours, The Reader)
With Tom Hanks, Sandra Bullock, Max von Sydow, Thomas Horn
International premiere / Out of Competition

First reviews: Todd McCarthy (Hollywood Reporter) and Gabe Toro (Playlist)
Jin líng Shí San Chai (The Flowers of War)
People’s Republic of China
By Zhang Yimou (Raise the Red Lantern, Hero, A Woman, a Gun and a Noodle Shop)
With Christian Bale, Ni Ni, Atsuro Watabe
International premiere / Out of Competition

First review: Andrew Schenker (Slant, 2/4).
Kebun binatang (Postcards from the Zoo)
Indonesia/Germany/Hongkong, China
By Edwin (Kara, Anak Sebatang Pohon, Blind Pig Who Wants to Fly)
With Ladya Cheryl, Nicholas Saputra
World premiere

From the Torino Film Lab: "Little Lana was 3 years old when she was abandoned, alone in the Zoo.  Raised by a giraffe trainer, the Zoo is the only world she knows. Until one day, a charming magician arrives and Lana finds her love, for she is ready to leave. Together, they wander around the streets of Jakarta. She becomes his assistant in selling medicine and performing magic. The town loves them. Soon, they host their own TV show. One day, the magician disappears. Lana works as a masseuse, 'with benefits,' her customers love her. She tells them stories. Stories of the sound of the Hippo’s steps, the flapping of the Elephant’s ears, the strange, flute-like sound of the Giraffe. Lana no longer knows happiness. She has only the feeling of longing. Lana returns to the Zoo, seeking out the giraffe trainer, who is already gone.  Again, Lana is left alone. This time accompanied only by the feeling of longing. A longing feeling, that has haunted her all of her life. A longing feeling, which surely haunted her father, who dared to leave Lana, his daughter, in the Zoo. Alone."


Berlinale Special

Death Row – Documentary series in four parts
By Werner Herzog (Fitzcarraldo, Cave of Forgotten Dreams)
World premiere

Into the Abyss is part of this series commissioned by Britain's Channel 4.
Don – The King Is Back
By Farhan Akhtar (Dil Chahta Hai, Lakshya, Don)         
With Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Boman Irani, Om Puri, Florian Lukas
German premiere

Sequel to Don (2006). The Wikipedia entry on this one, which sees a wide release this very Friday, probably has all you'll want to know.
By Guy Maddin (My Winnipeg, The Saddest Music in the World, Brand Upon the Brain!)
With Jason Patric, Isabella Rossellini, Udo Kier, Brooke Palsson
International premiere

Saw its world premiere in Toronto. Reviews and trailer.


La chispa de la vida
By Álex de la Iglesia (El día de la bestia, Perdita Durango, The Last Circus)
With Salma Hayek, José Mota, Fernando Tejero, Blanca Portillo, Juan Luis Galiardo
International premiere

From Ioncinema: "Scripted by Randy Feldman, this is the story of Roberto, an out-of-work publicist in dire financial straits. Everything changes when he has an accident and is left trapped in such a way that nobody knows how to rescue him. The absurd incident attracts media interest, so Roberto decides to turn the situation into a media circus. The idea is simple: he will sell the exclusive rights to television companies and secure his family's future for ever." And Ioncinema has more background on the film's making.
Marley – Documentary
Great Britain/USA
By Kevin Macdonald (The Last King of Scotland, Life in a Day, Touching the Void)
World premiere

In Cannes this year, the Telegraph's David Gritten spoke with Macdonald about the doc. 

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BerlinaleBerlinale 2012Brillante MendozaAntonio ChavarríasStephen DaldryZhang YimouEdwinWerner HerzogGuy MaddinÁlex de la IglesiaKevin MacdonaldDailyFestival Coverage
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