Recommended Watching: Victoria

There’s this thing about Berlin that always works so well for people who don’t live here: The city is wrapped in a unique mysticism. There’s hardly another capital whose attributes are more difficult to pin down. People praise the good club scene, the inexpensive rent along with the resulting freedom to truly spend half your day in a café without inviting judgment.  The breadth of the streets, that sense of the tangible and uncomplicated—although Germans are more known for saying what they actually mean, which most of them do without fail. But despite the creative scene, which naturally settled in Berlin, there’s a snag: Film and fashion aren’t taking off on a global level.

No wonder that Sebastian Schipper has garnered such praise for his new film, Victoria, taking home an impressive six statues at the Deutsche Filmpreis including Best Cinematography (Sturla Brandth Grøvlen), which hits the nail on the head as the camera seamlessly captures the story of a Spanish student who is new to the city and wants to go on an adventure with these four guys she just met.  All documented in one shot without a single cut. Sitting in the Kino International in the middle of a Saturday, I was absolutely transported for 136 minutes, tagging along with Victoria, Sonne, Fuß, Blinker and Boxer. Of course the film was thoroughly rehearsed and supposedly in the can on the third try. And although this is known—and the short review on Zeit Online had some spoilers that, looking back, I could have done without—it remains one of the most impressive films that I have seen in a long time. This is above all thanks to the lead actors, Laia Costa and Frederik Lau and also with the help of the soundtrack composed by Nils Frahm as well as DJ Koze’s catchy beats. It doesn’t get more Berlin than this and it would be all too deserved if this film managed to shift the way the city is perceived.

Check out the trailer and head to the cinema!