The documentary "Sur l'Adamant" by French director Nicolas Philibert has won the Golden Bear at the Berlinale. The film tells about an unusual day clinic - an aid facility housed in a floating building on the Seine. Here mentally ill people find attention, employment and help by the hour. You can participate in workshops, courses, or just talk to others. The center is part of a larger network.
Director Philibert presented his film at a press conference during the festival. He wanted to help change the way people look at patients and people with mental health problems. "And I also wanted to destroy those clichés a bit," said Philibert. Everyday life on the ship, which is also unusual in terms of architecture, is shown with great respect and affection for all people.
Philibert is always cautious, whether he lets sick or healthy people talk, interviews them or silently observes them. With a respectful distance he gets close to the people on the "Adamant". The camera allows him to cross a certain threshold, said Philibert, to overcome his own fears and difficulties. "We all have difficulties approaching others, and the camera helps me."
Other award winners
The new film by German director Christian Petzold also received an award - "Red Sky" received the Grand Jury Prize. The film festival announced the decisions in Berlin.
The acting prize went to a child this year: Sofía Otero was honored for the best acting performance in a leading role. In the coming-of-age film "20,000 especies de abejas" ("20,000 Species of Bees") she plays an eight-year-old child who is searching for his gender identity.
The Austrian Thea honor received the Silver Bear for the best acting performance in a supporting role. In Christoph Hochhäusler's crime thriller "Until the End of the Night," Honor plays a trans woman who is supposed to investigate undercover with a police officer in the drug scene.
The German filmmaker Angela Schanelec was awarded the Screenplay Prize for her Oedipus adaptation "Music". The Frenchman Philippe Garrel received the Silver Bear for best director, in his film "Le grand chariot" he portrays a family of puppeteers.
The jury prize went to Portuguese director João Canijo's psychodrama "Mal Viver", which tells the story of several women in an old hotel. Cinematographer Hélène Louvart received the Silver Bear for outstanding artistic achievement in the drama "Disco Boy". In it, Franz Rogowski plays a man who flees to France and joins the Foreign Legion.
Alongside Cannes and Venice, the Berlinale is one of the major film festivals. The American actress Kristen Stewart ("Spencer", "Twilight") headed the international jury this year. Together with the other jury members, she decided on the awards. Last year, the drama "Alcarràs - The Last Harvest" won the Golden Bear. This year's Berlinale ends on Sunday.