22.04. ‐ 27.04.2025

International And Hessian Film Highlights

The anticipation rises, only about three weeks until the opening of the LICHTER Film Festival 2018. That is reason enough to give you a closer look to this year’s programme. For the eleventh issue we packed a few highlights of regional filmmakers, but also a great many international films for you. The content of the International Programme this year all revolve around our theme “Chaos”.

International Highlights

Guy Maddin, Evan Johnson and Galen Johnson have been cult directors for a while. The Green Fog was flooded with praise at this year’s Berlinale. The homage to Hitchock’s “Vertigo” was fully montaged from other films that take place in San Francisco. LICHTER presents the film on Saturday, the 7th of April at 20:45 in the cinema of the German Filmmuseum. Similarly gripping and also shown at the Film museum: the documentary Devil’s Freedom on the Mexican drug war. Director Everardo Gonzales impressively portrays how unleashed violence and the further brutalization of society affect the people. Perpetrator and victims are interviewed while masked and through the security of anonymity talk shockingly open about their life with violence. The screening is on the 4th of April.

Five films are celebrating their German premieres: All You Can Eat Buddha (director: Ian Lagarde), Sergio & Sergei, the documentary collage In Praise Of Nothing, the mystery thriller Dhogs by Andrés Goteira and the anarchistic comedy The Goose by Mike Maryniuk. The genres may be very different, but all productions have one thing in common:


“In the films, very different people all steer into chaos – pubescent teenagers, a cosmonaut on the space station Mir and Iggy Pop lending his voice to Nothing on a quest to find meaning”, muses Johanna Süß, deputy director of the festival.

Additionally, LICHTER presents Blue My Mind and HOME as two Coming-of-Age dramas that are currently on everyone’s lips. Fien Troch received the Orizzonti Award for Best Director at the Venice Film Festival for HOME. Lisa Brühlmann’s feature film debut Blue My Mind was honoured for Best Director at the Film Festival Max-Ophüls-Prize and is celebrating seven nominations at the Swiss Film Awards.

The Regional Competition

The feature films and documentaries in the regional long- and short film programme once again bring the great variety in Hessian filmmakers to the screen. Festival director Gregor Maria Schubert states: “The entries for the competition around the ‘Weißer Bembel’ have shown how strong the year of film 2018 is.”

Dieter Reifarth’s essayistic documentary Die Tortur premieres in Germany at LICHTER and talks of the experiences of torture the writer Jean Améry went through as a prisoner of National Socialism in the Belgian Fort Breendonk. Director David Sieveking from Friedberg takes on a topic that inspires passion in Germany: vaccinations. Should or shouldn’t one? Whoever feels the need to have this question answered: we recommend watching Eingeimpft on the 7th of April at 16:00 o’clock.

© Still: Ink of Yam

Ink of Yam is the graduation film of Tom Fröhlich from the University of Applied Sciences Darmstadt and was awarded the Best Graduation Film at the Hessian Film-and Cinema Awards 2017. The director visited a tattoo studio in Jerusalem, in which the Middle-East conflict seems non-existent. Both works enter the LICHTER Film Festival as Hessian premieres.

Especially documentaries need not fear comparison all over Germany this year. This is proven especially by the homage to the Cinema Concetta, Wunder der Wirklichkeit (Director: Thomas Frickel) that we are screening on Saturday, the 7th of April at 18 o’clock at the Zoo-Gesellschaftshaus. Numerous productions were made with contributions from filmmakers and sponsors from Hessen and the Rhine-Main region.

The regional short films as well promise to be a great Highlight. The Short Film Series I and II assemble the Cream of the Crop of what the local up-and-coming film scene has to offer – a short lived pleasure extraordinaire.

Rosa von Praunheim however is considered an institution of German filmmaking. His documentary Männerfreundschaften completes the competition for the best regional longfilm. The film on the passionate correspondence between poets of the Weimar Classicism celebrates its international premiere on Wednesday the 4th of April at the Zoo-Gesellschaftshaus. In total, nine longfilms and 27 short films from Hesse and the Rhine-Main region compete for the infamous Weißer Bembel.

Extra Regional

Three longfilms out of competition celebrate their international premieres at LICHTER. The documentary Das schwarze Museum (The Black Museum) (director: Oliver Hardt) on the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington realises the African-American History – the monstrosities of its beginning, the fight for freedom and equality, the substantial influences on the modern (pop-)culture. The family drama HALT!LOS! (director: Moritz Becherer) deals with existiantial dread and the pressure to perform, while Citizen Animal by Oliver Kyr is a documentary on the “civil rights” of animals.