Berlin's Generation for maturing audiences

'Lala's Gun,' 'Cherrybomb' among titles picked for section

BERLIN -- Drink, drugs, guns and prostitution: Judging by the subject matter of the selected films, the Berlin International Film Festival's children and youth sidebar Generation has come of age.

Brit drama "Cherrybomb," from Lisa Barros D'Sa and Glenn Leyburn stars "Harry Potter" alumnus Rupert Grint as a teenager out for a wild weekend of stealing and substance abuse.

"Katja's Sister," from famed Dutch director Mijke de Jong -- who won Berlin's best children's film Crystal Bear prize in 2005 with "Bluebird" -- looks at prostitution among Russian immigrants in Amsterdam.

Chinese feature "Lala's Gun" by Ning Jingwu is a coming-of-age story centering on a boy's journey to deliver a gun to his father. And "My Suicide" by U.S. director David Lee Miller tells the story of a teen romance between a geek and the most beautiful, but twisted, girl in school.

But the initial lineup for Generation 2009, announced Wednesday, also includes some more traditional kiddie fare. Movies include Lars Buchel's "Lippel's Dream," a fantasy tale based on the best-selling book by Paul Maar and featuring German stars Moritz Bleibtreu, Anke Engelke and Christiane Paul.

For the first time, the Generation sidebar will include a documentary: "The Inheritors" from filmmaker Eugenio Polgovsky, that examines the legacy of hard work in a Mexican family.

The final Generation titles will be announced in early January. The 2009 Berlinale is set to run Feb. 5-15.

A complete list of Generation titles follows:

Generation Kplus
"It's Not Me, I Swear!," Philippe Falardeau
"The Girl," Fredrik Edfeldt
"Lippel's Dream," Lars Buechel
"The Inheritors," Eugenio Polgovsky
"Mamma Moo & Crow," Igor Veyshtagin
"Max Embarrassing," Lotte Svendsen
"The Bogeyman," Atalay Tasdiken

Generation 14plus
"Cherrybomb," Glenn Leyburn and Lisa Barros D'Sa
"Lala's Gun," Ning Jingwu
"Katia's Sister," Mijke de Jong
"Miao Miao," Cheng Hsiao-Tse
"My Suicide," David Lee Miller
"Snow," Aida Begic
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