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Aarne and Iris dancing

The Match Factory Girl

  The Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki was already a critical success when he had his first hit (in cult terms), 1989’s Leningrad Cowboys Go America, a road movie about a fictional Russian rock band on

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Barbara on her bicycle

Barbara

  By the time Christian Petzold made Barbara in 2012, enough time had passed for his film not to seen as the latest in a line of Ostalgia movies (2003’s Good Bye Lenin! is a

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Benno Fürmann and Nina Hoss

Wolfsburg

  Wolfsburg. The title is a bit of a joke, a reference to the city/state in Germany where Volkswagen is headquartered. The fact that there’s not a single VW in the film suggesting that either

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Jeanne and Heinrich in bed

The State I Am In

  Christian Petzold was 40 when he made The State I Am In (Die Innere Sicherheit in the original German) in 2000. Which means he’d have been in his mid-teens and at his most impressionable

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The children see the Virgin

Fatima

  In many ways a bog-standard bible flick given a cursory wipeover with a humanist rag in the figure of Harvey Keitel – doing penance for Bad Lieutenant all those years ago – Fatima is

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Lindsay Burdge and Jade Eshete on the subway

Materna

  Not so much a film as four shorts held together by a framing device, Materna looks at women through the prism of the family – the mother, the daughter, the sister, the neice. All

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Nina Hoss and André Hennicke

Something to Remind Me

  It’s called Toter Mann in German, the literal translation of which is Dead Man, but instead the distributors went with the possibly even more ironic Something to Remind Me for the English-language release of

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WL Mackenzie King sniffs a boot

The Twentieth Century

  Where to begin with The Twentieth Century, a mad bit of nonsense that’s initially exasperating but eventually works so hard at what it’s doing that your resistance might start to crumble. We’re in the

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Jacob Matschenz and Paule Beer in a swimming pool

Undine

  So, an Undine. It’s a mythical water nymph, mentioned by Paracelsus, the Renaissance physician, but you won’t learn that directly from Christian Petzold’s latest drama, an increasingly bizarre and dislocated story of love suffused

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The Mangrove Nine in the dock

Small Axe: Mangrove

  Small Axe: Mangrove is the first of a series of five standalone films made for the BBC by Steve McQueen. The umbrella title takes its name from the reggae song by Bob Marley (or

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Benno Fürmann, Nina Hoss and Hilmi Sözer

Jerichow

  Jerichow is the fourth collaboration between director Christian Petzold and actor Nina Hoss – both names a guarantee of at least a degree of excellence. But before we get there – just quickly skimming

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Liv Ullmann and Bibi Andersson

Persona

  Ingmar Bergman beat Mr Spock to the mind meld. Persona, Bergman’s masterwork about one person’s identity merging with another’s, debuted in August 1966. The Vulcan psychic control technique first saw light of cathode ray

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