Sat Oct 21, 4:45 PM
Director: Christian Petzold
102 minutes
MA 15+

A smouldering comedy of manners about friendship, love and jealousy.

German auteur Christian Petzold returns with a triumphant, sly tragicomedy on the politics of friendship, sex and jealousy. Odd couple twenty-something friends Leon (Thomas Schubert), a pretentious, failing novelist, and Felix (Langston Uibel), an amiable wannabe photographer, escape to a cosy beach house on the Baltic coast. But the house’s owner, Leon’s mother, has failed to disclose that a young family friend, Nadja (Paula Beer), is already crashing there. Not only that, she is enjoying a fling with a beefcake local lifeguard. And so between the ocean and an idyllic woodland a complex and wry relationship quadrangle develops. Romance and resentment entangles all four while Leon grapples with his professional and emotional failings. Just as the slow-burning emotional tension tightens, the forest around them ignites into flame. Red skies loom above – will they lead to renewal or destruction?

“Afire captures complex human interactions in a style of clear-minded sobriety.” (Slant)

“Deceptive simplicity makes way for illuminating depths.” (Hollywood Reporter)

Film Type Feature Fiction
Program Strand World Cinema
Language German
Subtitles English
Director Christian Petzold
Producer Florian Koerner von Gustorf, Michael Weber, Anton Kaiser
Writer Christian Petzold
Cinematographer Hans Fromm
Editor Bettina Böhler
Cast Thomas Schubert, Paula Beer, Langston Uibel, Enno Trebs, Matthias Brandt
Genre Art, Comedy, Disaster, Drama, Literature, Sexual