This past week, the city revolved around cinema with its annual Berlinale Film Festival.
Mostly known as a place for independent and world cinema, this year’s edition held one title which is surely of interest even outside of cinema circles. ‘Denk ich an Deutschland in der Nacht’ (If I Think of Germany at Night) is a new documentary from Director Romuald Karmakar (‘Villalobos’ 2009), which follows 5 German DJ heroes, each of whom embody the proper mindset and work ethic necessary to walk the line between DJ, creative, artist, and performer. Pioneers Roman Flügel, Ricardo Villalobos, Move D, Sonja Moonear and Ata juxtapose sweat performances with moments of creativity and reflection through moments of quiet observation and intimate conversations.
As far as dance music films and documentaries go, ‘Denk ich an Deutschland in der Nacht’ finds its strength in its meditative tone rather than quick editing and saturated post production. Even when inside the DJ booths and sweaty dancefloors of the likes of De Marktkantine and HYTE Amsterdam, its camera focuses on wires, cables, lights, and atmosphere with a hypnotizingly subdued pulse. As the film opens with a lengthy still framed shot, set in the well equipped, and still chaotic, Villalobos studio as the famed selector laments over rare 70s electro, viewers are immediately drawn into a word well outside the aesthetic barrage of contemporary dance culture.
‘Denk ich an Deutschland in der Nacht’ is set for German release on 11 May, 2017