22 Nov 9:00 pm: Western
Director: Valeska Grisebach
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It’s a brave move to name your film after one of cinema’s most iconic genres, yet German writer-director Valeska Grisebach pulls it off, bringing a wit and an outsider’s eye to some of the classic tropes of the western.
A group of German construction workers have set up camp in rural Bulgaria, tasked with building a hydroelectric power plant. The migrant workers inevitably clash with the local villagers, in an age-old tale of loyalty, land and ownership set against the backdrop of the contemporary European Union.
Chief cowboy is present in the lanky form of Meinhardt, played by newcomer Meinhard Neumann, discovered by the director in a Berlin horse market. Taciturn and soulful, Meinhard is the accidental catalyst for conflict when the white horse he borrowed from a local goes missing. The micro-aggressions within an all-male community are beautifully observed in this razor-sharp dissection of a culture-clash.
In German and Bulgarian with English subtitles.
Starring: Meinhard Neumann, Reinhardt Wetrek, Syuleyman Alilov Letifov
Produced in: Germany-Bulgaria-Austria
Running time: 119 mins