SND Films
By Walter Stokman
2006
Human Interest / Arts
50 min.
NL
English/Afrikaans
Produced by VPRO TV
35mm
Format: 16:9

South African poet and singer Gert Vlok Nel lives in Beaufort West, a village in Big Karoo, an empty stretch of land between Cape Town and Johannesburg.The village forms the inspiration for Gert Vlok Nel’s work.

Beaufort West has obtained an almost mythical status: critics refer to it as the “real” South Africa, far away from the big Westernized cities.

Accompanied by his poems and songs we travel through the village and meet Gert, his father, Beaufort West and its inhabitants.

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SND Films
By Andrew Davies
& André Schäfer
2010
Portrait/Cultural
58 & 90 min.
Germany
English
Produced by Florianfilm Gmbh
35mm
Format: 16:9

There are two reasons to revive interest in the Hollywood star Rock Hudson in 2010: If he had not died of AIDS 25 years ago, it would have been his 85th birthday in November 2010. The film portrays a very male looking gay leading man who had to perform a secret balancing act between the heterosexual Hollywood world and the dark side of closeted sexuality. In fact he was someone who always needed to tell lies. He had to become a very good actor even in real life.

The film includes interviews with his French doctor Dr. Philippe Siou and Dr. Michael Gottlieb, Rock’s American doctor who became the first physician to describe a new disease that would later become known as AIDS, friends like Stockton Briggle and his personal secretary Mark Miller, Yanou Collart, his French PR manager, Armistead Maupin, bestselling author, Richard Dyer, film historian, Robert Hofler, author of the book “The Man Who Invented Rock Hudson”, Richard Anderson and Salome Jens, co-stars of “SECONDS”, Leonard Stern, producer of Hudson’s TV series “McMillan&Wife” and Hollywood reporter Rona Barrett.

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SND Films
By Tony Boumans
1998
Portrait
59 min.
NL
English / Dutch
35mm
Format: 4:3

…..but I was a girl The story of Frieda Belinfante This film tells the story of Frieda Belinfante (1904-1995), a remarkable woman who was the first female conductor to have her own symphony orchestra in Holland and later in Orange County, United States. Controversial, because of her homosexuality she shows a remarkably strong and positive will in everything she does.

Born in a family of musicians in Amsterdam, she joins the resistance during WW II and flees to Switzerland. After the war she moves to the U.S. where she proceeds with her musical career in the Hollywood studios and forms her own symphony orchestra with only Hollywood musicians. The story of her life is told by herself, her older sister Renee, old students and friends, and illustrated by the places where she lived, archive material of her orchestra and some of her most beautiful music.

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SND Films
By Joseph Lovett
2005
Cultural
72 min.
USA
English
Produced by Lovett Productions
Visit website
Video
Format: 4:3

Documentary producer/director Joseph Lovett focuses his lens on the unbridled sexual passion and exploration that marked the twelve years from Stonewall (1969) to the first reported cases of AIDS (1981). With access to a filmic and photographic treasure trove of erotic life on New York’s West Side Piers, trucks, bars, dance clubs, baths and beaches, Lovett’s cast of Storytellers (including AIDS activist and writer Larry Kramer and erotic photographer Tom Bianchi, and others) takes us from the remarkably repressed pre-Stonewall period to an era of sexual excess unparalleled since ancient Rome.

Straightforward, funny and titillating at the same time, they tell their stories with remarkable wit, humor and perspective. For younger people – those who became sexually active after the age of AIDS – this film may be a startling revelation of what everyday life was like when American youth were cutting loose from Puritanical values and ascribing to the watchword of the time “if it feels good, do it.”

 

 

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SND Films
By Alexa Karolinski
2012
Human Interest
80 min.
USA/Germany
Yiddish/German
Watch trailer
35mm
Format: 16:9

berlinalelogoOma & Bella is an intimate glimpse into the world of Regina Karolinski (Oma) and Bella Katz, two friends who live together in Berlin. Having survived the Holocaust and then stayed in Germany after the war, it is through the food they cook together that they remember their childhoods, maintain a bond to each other and answer questions of heritage, memory and identity. As the film follows them through their daily lives, a portrait emerges of two women with with a light sense of humor, vivid stories, and a deep fondness for good food. Created by Oma’s granddaughter Alexa, the film captures their ongoing struggle to retain a part of their past while remaining very much engaged in the present.

Selected for Berlin 2012, HotDocs 2012, Silverdocs 2012

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SND Films
By Edda Baumann-Von Broen
2011
Cultural / Human Interest
58 min.
Germany
English/German
Produced by Avanti Media
35mm
Format: 16:9

It doesn’t matter if you’re a model or basketball player or if you lead a very normal existence, life above 1.85m (6’) is different. Other rules apply up here. Tiiu and Michelle are successful models and are too tall for their jobs. Arianne’s mother doesn’t like her daughter’s height. Sarah is undergoing surgery to prevent her from becoming an estimated 1.90m (6’3“). Lea is taking hormones which are prohibited for children to stop her from growing. Lisa is 1,99m (6’6“) and could become a professional basketball player if she tried hard enough, but she would rather be a proper girl.

The Internet is full of girls who are distressed about their growth and willing to do anything to finally stop it. Every pediatrician has a growth chart on the wall where even young children can see whether they are normal or not.

But what’s normal? Every norm is an average statistic of many human beings. The chances of fulfilling precisely this norm are very slim. Nevertheless, we live in a society in which those around us are continually letting us know whether or not we fit in, especially when you’re a girl. Big, loud and self-confident – who wants that?

Often we become what others see in our bodies. In this film, Tiiu, Michelle, Arianne, Sarah, Lea and Lisa show how they live and feel, and how they’re coming to terms with their height. And also, what their size has made them into.

Between cries and laughter, one can’t help but fall in love with these tall girls, who bare their souls to show how difficult yet liberating living outside the norm can be.

 

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SND Films
By Walter Stokman
2004
Gay /Human Interest/Cultural
59 & 75 min.
NL
English
Produced by Kasander Film
35mm
Format: 16:9

IDFA & BERLIN SELECTIONS.berlinalelogo

One hot August afternoon in 1972 John Wojtowicz attempted to rob a Brooklyn branch of the Chase Manhattan bank. An unexpectedly rapid police response prompted Wojtowicz to take eight hostages. Once Wojtowicz revealed that he had committed the robbery to finance the sex change operation of his lover, there was no turning back. A 10 minute robbery degenerated into a 14 hour stand off. Cops, crowds and cameras – the robbery was a spectacle that eventually served as the basis for Sidney Lumet’s 1975 film DOG DAY AFTERNOON.

Of all the accounts as to what took place during those 14 hours, Wojtowicz’s testimonial is the only one missing. After serving time in prison, Wojtowicz was released, taking up residence several blocks from the bank, leading his life in the illuminated shadow of cinematic memories that were not his own.

‘Based on a true story’ is a remarkable journey back in time reconstructing this day in August 1972. Whereas John Wojtowicz wants to star in his own memories, his control over the story slips away when other accounts come to light. With stunning original news footage, clips of the film Dog Day Afternoon, and recollections of both the hostages, the Police, the FBI and John Wojtowicz, this becomes a story of many faces.

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SND Films
By André Schäfer
2007
Cultural
52 & 90 min.
Germany
Various
Produced by Florian Film GmbH
Digital
Format: 16:9

SELECTED FOR THE 2007 BERLIN FILM FESTIVAL

HERE’S LOOKING AT YOU, BOY tells the story of the coming-out of gay and lesbian cinema and the slowly developing self-confidence of its makers and their audience – a self-confidence which has been characterised in recent times by films which have received awards at renowned film festivals like Berlin and Venice or even the Academy Awards in Hollywood. Gay and lesbian films have had to break through sociological barriers in order to assert themselves and to eventually realise their own coming-out to a broader audience. This film will deal with these and many other important films of the last few decades. Plenty of clips form international productions and behind the scenes footage will complement the interviews with the talent from behind and in front of the camera – with Stephen Frears, Gus Van Sant, Rosa von Praunheim, Tilda Swinton, John Waters, Geneviere Turner and many others!

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SND Films
By André Schäfer
& Werner Könne
2005
Portrait / Cultural
52 min.
Germany
English/German
Produced by Florianfilm Gmbh
Video
Format: 16:9

James Dean – alias Jim Stark – crouching on the roadside, giggling childishly into himself. James Dean – alias Cal – lying in a corn field watching the fruit grow. James Dean – alias James Dean – the collar of his coat turned up in New York: Images which have collaborated on building a myth – the image of eternal and misunderstood youth. Unlike Marlon Brando, the proletarian rebel with identifiable goals, James Dean was the timeless and androgynous youthful rebel. His death on the Interstate 46 leads us back to 1950s America, a time when youth was re-interpreted all anew.

The USA was looking for its profile: While the McCarthy-hysteria was reactivating the tough patriar-chal America, the internal social fabric was determining its course for “Big Mama“. All of this followed a general “psychologicalisation” of all spheres of life: Authenticity, truth and rebellion turned into values attributed to youth and also revolutionised the Hollywood studios. James Dean played himself – but like no one else before he also produced himself. It was through this that he was turned into an icon of a media created youth culture, the shadow of which is still hanging over us today.

Excerpts of James Dean’s three films, behind the scenes footage, archive from 1950s America and original photos will merge with the newly shot material tracking the phenomenon James Dean in present day New York, Fairmount and California.

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SND Films
By Greta Schiller
1998
Portrait/Cultural
74 min.
UK/USA/South Africa
English & Afrikaans
Produced by Jezebel Productions
HD
Format: 16:9

In 1962, at the height of oppression in apartheid South Africa, a gay white theatre director was arrested with Nelson Mandela. His name was Cecil Williams. This is his story. Featuring Corin Redgrave as Cecil Williams.

Produced in association with Channel Four (UK), AVRO (Netherlands), SA Broadcasting, VRT-CANVAS (Belgium), Corporation for Public Broadcasting (USA), London Production Fund and the BFI.

World premiere Edinburgh 1998. Amsterdam Documentary Film Festival, 1998. Berlin International Film Festival 1999: Teddy Bear Award for Best Documentary. Best Documentary, Milan Gay Festival, 1999 and BERLINALE 2019.

FULLY RESTORED HD VERSION AVAILABLE.

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SND Films
By Ben Loeterman
2011
Portrait / Cultural
52 min.
USA
English
Produced by Ben Loeterman Productions, Inc.
Visit website
Watch trailer
HD
Format: 16:9

Once a maverick who was nearly run out of the American Institute of Architects, John Portman is now recognized as one of the most innovative and imitated architects ever.

Over 45 years, Portman’s iconic urban statements and eye- popping interiors have risen in 60 cities on four continents to redefine cityscapes in America, and skylines in China and the rest of Asia. The film captures Portman’s approach in an intimate portrait that, by turn, assesses and appreciates Portman’s work.

Dramatic time-lapse footage shows off Portman’s buildings at their best— often in moving sunlight that washes over his facades and spaces.

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SND Films
By André Schäfer
2007
Culture
52 & 90 min.
Germany
English/German
Produced by Florianfilm Gmbh
Visit website
35mm
Format: 16:9

100 PORSCHES AND ME is the search for the 1970s grass-green Porsche that André Schäfer has been dreaming of for years. A road movie about obsession, of his own and that of 100 Porsche drivers who are being asked for their car keys – the flabbergasted rich wife in front of her suburban German garage as well as a maniac who stores his 47 Porsches in an old hangar in Santa Monica, California: Jerry Seinfeld. A journey into the dreams of one hundred people for whom a Porsche has become the purest expression of who they actually are – and into the myth of a company and a brand which has fascinated people like Adolf Hitler, Andreas Baader, James Dean and many others.

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