Berlin: Forum Lineup Unveiled

Courtesy of the Berlin Film Festival
'El mar la mar'

'Golden Exits,' starring Emily Browning, Yiddish-language drama 'Menashe' and the experimental 'El mar la mar' are among the highlights of Berlin's art house sidebar.

Berlin is keeping it alternative and obscure for the 2017 edition of the Forum, its festival sidebar featuring experimental art house films.

The 43 titles screening in this year's Forum lineup, announced Wednesday, come from more than 30 nations, and feature works stretching from traditional drama to experimental video and long-term documentary.

Alex Ross Perry's Sundance entry Golden Exits, which stars Emily Browning, Analeigh Tipton, Chloe Sevigny and Mary-Louise Parker, will head to Berlin's Forum after its Park City debut. The drama is the story of a young Australian woman (Browning) who comes to New York and unwittingly disrupts the lives of two couples.

Also making the Sundance-to-Forum trip are Joshua Z Weinstein's feature debut Menashe, a drama set among the Hasidic Jewish community of Borough Park, Brooklyn, and shot almost entirely in Yiddish; and Amman Abbasi's Dayveon, the story of a 13-year-old boy who, following the death of his brother, falls in with a local gang.

Another doc that made the Forum cut this year is For Ahkeem, from directors Jeremy Levine and Landon Van Soest. Shot in Missouri, the long-term documentary focuses on Daje, a troubled teen who lives with her single mother in St. Louis. Other nonfiction entries this year include two from German director Heinz Emigholz: Bickels [Socialism] a portrait of Israeli architect and kibbutz designer Samuel Bickels; and 2+2=22 [The Alphabet], which documents a recording session by electronic music group Kreidler in Tbilisi, Georgia.

Some of the more experimental works in the 2017 Forum lineup are The Theatre of Disappearance from sculptor and installation artist Adrian Villar Rojas, described as a “hypnotic triptych depicting latent states of war”; Verena Paravel's and Lucien Castaing-Taylor’s somniloquies, which works with the dream diatribes of American songwriter Dion McGregor; and El mar la mar, in which directors J.P. Sniadecki and Joshua Bonnetta take an impressionistic approach to dissect the landscape of the Sonoran Desert, part of which spans the U.S.-Mexico border.

The 67th Berlin Film Festival runs Feb. 9-19.