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German Zeitgeist

by David Lamble .
Tuesday Mar 5, 2019
German Zeitgeist

The 23rd Berlin & Beyond Film Festival, unspooling new films from Germany, Austria and Switzerland, kicks off at the Castro Theatre (March 8-10), with encore screenings March 11 at Berkeley's Shattuck Cinemas, concluding with specialty programs at the Goethe-Institut (March 12-14). Once again the festival demonstrates its track record for showcasing films with LGBTQ content.

"The Cakemaker" In Berlin, a baker, Thomas, meets Oren, an Israeli with a sweet tooth. Following Oren's death in a car accident, the grieving baker decides to visit his late lover's family (widow and young child) in Israel. Thomas cautiously insinuates himself into Anat's life, and eventually becomes a one-man bakery in the widow's Kosher cafe. Complete with baking tips and sinfully beautifully close-ups of sugar treats, "The Cakemaker" joins culinary classics "Bagdad Cafe" and "Babette's Feast" in allowing us to feel as deliciously naughty about food as we have been made to feel about other carnal pleasures. (Goethe, 3/12)

"25 km/h" This world premiere is the story of Christian (43) and Georg (45), brothers who haven't spoken for decades, reunited at their father's funeral. The boozy reunion unlocks a secret ambition: to race across Germany on mopeds. (Castro, 3/8)

"Berlin Excelsior" Erik Lemke's full-length doc combines gay and straight content in its exploration of life at a block-long apartment complex in the German capital. (Castro, 3/9)

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