Berlinale 2012: BARBARA by Christian Petzold

By Feb 17, 2012 Comment (0)


We’re here to continue our little conversation about the 62nd Berlin Film Festival which started on Thursday, February 9, 2012.

One of the titles which definitely deserves our full attention is Christian Petzold‘s movie Barbara, the first of three German productions in the main competition.

Described as a bittersweet period drama, this movie is set in 1980 and is actually a portrait of the Communist country nine years before it imploded when the Berlin Wall fell.



Movie stars Nina Hoss as Barbara, a doctor who applies for an exit visa from the GDR (East Germany). But, as punishment, she gets transferred from Berlin to a small hospital out in the country, far from everything.

On the other hand, we have Jörg, her lover from the West, who is already planning her escape. Barbara waits, keeping to herself. The new apartment, the neighbors, summertime, the countryside – none of that means anything to her.

Working as a pediatric surgeon under her new boss Andre, played by Ronald Zehrfeld, she is attentive when it comes to the patients, but quite distanced toward her colleagues.

Her future, she feels, will begin later. But Andre confuses her. His confidence in her professional abilities, his caring attitude, his smile.




Why does he cover for her when she helps the young runaway Sarah? Does he have an assignment to keep track of her? Is he in love? But as the day of her planned escape quickly approaches, Barbara starts to lose control. Over herself, her plans, over love.

I’m sure you will enjoy these great photos from Petzold’s movie, which made its premiere at the Berlinale.

We wish director and his crew luck and who knows, maybe even another Golden Bear!

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