The 8. PornFilmFestival Berlin, presented in media-partnership with Exberliner, runs October 23-27 at Moviemento.
When you live in a city like Berlin, a film festival blatantly using the word “porn” needs to go above and beyond to get notice. The eighth annual PornFilmFestival does just that with a selection of quality films about sexuality – rather than only explicit pornography.
Starting with a focus on fetishes, the festival opens with Christina Voros’ Kink, an interesting but rather conventional doc exploring the inner-workings of San Francisco’s famous armoury-cum-porn studio.
More fetish with Cheyenne Picardo’s Remedy, a slightly lengthy low-budget drama about a young sub who gets into the professional fantasy business with a great perf by actress Kira Davies in the titular role.
Lene Berg’s Kopfkino (“head cinema”) also touches on the fetish theme in a fascinating experimental documentary centred around a dinner conversation between eight women in the sex industry.
A look back at seduction methods of the past drives the second theme of the fest: cruising.
William Friedkin’s controversial 1980 film of the same name leads the pack and stands as a set-up for a more contemporary, yet perhaps as critically divisive, film by Travis Matthews and James Franco: Interior. Leather Bar.
More directly to the point, festival fave Todd Verow brings The End of Cruising, exploring the theme through a series of poetic vignettes.
Alain Guiraudie's Der Fremde am See, Exberliner's official pick, artfully explores the gay cruising scene in an idyllic French lakeside setting, disturbed by murder among beautiful men. At once explicitly sexual and Hitchcockian in its delivery of suspense, this is film that lingers. In French with German subs.
Also a don’t-miss: Angela Christlieb’s incredible Naked Opera, a film that won’t allow you to see Don Giovanni in the same light again.
Past closing films have caused somewhat of a stir, but this year’s film adaptation of Peaches’ stage musical Peaches Does Herself should be a crowdpleaser.
Also expect workshops and parties along the way. See www.pornfilmfestivalberlin.de for times and dates, and check back here for live blog coverage!
PornFilmFestival Berlin, Oct 23-27 | Moviemento, Kottbusser Damm 22, Kreuzberg, U-Bhf Schönleinstraße
Originally published in issue #120, October 2013.