Berlinale: Programme

Film file

Perspektive Deutsches Kino

Warum halb vier?

why three.thirty - you'll never walk alone

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Half past three on Saturday afternoon. A stadium … a game … and millions of viewers. Why do they make the pilgrimage to football stadiums every week? Lars Pape’s documentary shows the role that football plays in the lives of two old friends, Manni and Heinz, as well as that of actor Joachim Król. All three have their own individual connection to the game but also share an emotional bond to the phenomenon that is football. And whenever they talk about football, they are always talking about life.
To Joachim Król, football is deeply connected to his childhood and his father; going to the stadium together was a ritual that enabled father and son to communicate their feelings. As a young man, the first time that Joachim Król remembers seeing his father cry was when their club was relegated. The actor also takes an artistic look at the idea of football as theatre. To him, football is one of the last great amphitheatres, fulfilling humankind’s desire for community and emotion.
The story of Mannie and Heinz begins on a sports field in the sticks, suffused with the long-lost charm of the 1950s. This is where the two men met as youths playing on opposing teams. Their encounter has blossomed into a friendship that has enabled them to overcome the ups and downs of their lives. Manni, a jolly, if now somewhat portly gentleman, and the tall, lanky Heinz make a humorous, symbiotic pair.
In tracking down other aspects of the football universe, the filmmaker discovers just how diverse and heterogeneous the football community is: from normal fans to ‘ultras’, from the female fan club, Girls United, to former member of the national team Rudi Völler. And not forgetting celebrity football fans such as MTV presenter Markus Kavka and Fassbinder’s long standing assistant, Harry Baer and others.

Germany 2005, 90 min


Lars Pape