Sex tape satire wins Berlinale Golden Bear

Agence France-Presse . Berlin | Published: 19:25, Mar 05,2021


In this AFP file photo taken on February 14, 2015 Romanian director and screenwriter Radu Jude poses with the Silver Bear for Best Director for his film ‘Aferim’ at a press conference at the 65th International Film Festival Berlinale in Berlin.

Romanian sex tape satire ‘Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn’ by Radu Jude won the 71st Berlin film festival’s Golden Bear top prize Friday.

The film skewers pandemic-era social hypocrisy, telling the story of a teacher whose home pornography video winds up on the internet.

Israeli director Nadav Lapid announced the award, saying the movie had the ‘rare and essential quality of a lasting artwork’.

The festival, which was held entirely online, also awarded its first-ever ‘gender neutral’ best acting prize to Germany’s Maren Eggert for her performance in the sci-fi comedy ‘I’m Your Man’.

In the film by ‘Unorthodox’ director Maria Schrader, Eggert is a museum researcher who signs up to test a humanoid robot, played by British actor Dan Stevens from ‘Downton Abbey’, as a romantic partner.

The runner-up best film gong went to Japanese director Ryusuke Hamaguchi whose ‘Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy’ is made up of three stories of women looking for connection in modern Japan.

Maria Speth’s German documentary ‘Mr Bachmann and His Class’, about an empathetic teacher on the cusp of retirement who takes his pupils from a range of immigrant backgrounds under his wing, claimed the third-place jury prize.

Hungary’s Denes Nagy clinched best director for ‘Natural Light’, a harrowing drama about an atrocity committed by Hungarian soldiers in the Soviet Union during World War II.

Prolific South Korean filmmaker Hong Sangsoo, who won the Berlinale’s best director prize last year, was awarded best screenplay for ‘Introduction’ about young lovers and their feuding families which was set partly in Berlin.

The Berlinale jury was made up of six previous Golden Bear winners including last year’s laureate, dissident Iranian director Mohammad Rasoulof, who claimed the prize for ‘There Is No Evil’, about capital punishment.

Five of the members saw the films in person in the German capital in a specially reserved cinema, while Rasoulof watched from Tehran under house arrest.

The festival’s organisers hopes to hold a gala awards ceremony in June if pandemic conditions permit.

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