Undine is a historian who works as a museum guide in Berlin. She knows all about the Humboldt Forum, and has the knack of choosing just the right blouse and suit. She is nonchalantly beautiful, and the way she imparts her knowledge about the city that was built on a swamp is as professional as it is graceful. And yet, time and again, her gaze wanders over to the courtyard café at the Stadtmuseum to see if he is there, or is still there, or if he’s there again. Him. But Johannes is leaving, leaving her, and Undine’s world is collapsing. The magic has gone... Christian Petzold reworks the myth of the mysterious water spirit as a modern fairy-tale in a disenchanted world. His Undine defies her role as a powerless and spurned woman and falls in love anew, with Christoph, who dives into the sunken world of a reservoir. Petzold’s deeply assured work reimagines this legend by way of his own cinematic vision, in which precise everyday gestures are combined with ghostly hyperrealism. The story of a life-or-death love, splendidly and effortlessly told.
by Christian Petzold
With Paula Beer, Franz Rogowski, Maryam Zaree, Jacob Matschenz, Anne Ratte-Polle, Rafael Stachowiak, Julia Franz Richter
Germany / France 2020 German 90’ Colour World premiere

With

  • Paula Beer (Undine)
  • Franz Rogowski (Christoph)
  • Maryam Zaree (Monika)
  • Jacob Matschenz (Johannes)
  • Anne Ratte-Polle (Anne)
  • Rafael Stachowiak (Jochen)
  • Julia Franz Richter (Nora)

Crew

Written and directed byChristian Petzold
CinematographyHans Fromm
EditingBettina Böhler
Sound DesignMartin Steyer, Dominik Schleier, Benjamin Hörbe, Bettina Böhler
SoundAndreas Mücke-Niesytka
Production DesignMerlin Ortner
CostumesKatharina Ost
Make-upScharka Cechova, Franziska Röder
Assistant DirectorIres Jung
Production ManagerDorissa Berninger
ProducersFlorian Koerner von Gustorf, Michael Weber
Executive ProducerAnton Kaiser
Co-producerMargaret Menegoz
Co-productionLes Films du Losange, Paris

Produced by

Schramm Film Koerner & Weber

Berlin, Germany

+49 30 2615140

www.schrammfilm.de www.schrammfilm.de

World sales

The Match Factory

Köln, Germany

+49 221 5397090

www.the-match-factory.com www.the-match-factory.com

Christian Petzold

Born in Hilden, Germany in 1960, he has lived in Berlin since 1981. He studied German and drama at Freie Universität Berlin and then, from 1988 to 1994, film at the German Film and Television Academy Berlin (DFFB). He directed his first feature film in 1995. Made in 2000, his film The State I Am In won Gold at the German Film Awards; he was awarded the Silver Bear for Best Director for Barbara in 2012. Undine marks his fifth film to be presented in the Berlinale Competition and, following Transit, his second collaboration with Paula Beer and Franz Rogowski.

Filmography

1995 Pilotinnen · Pilotinnen 1996 Cuba Libre · Cuba Libre 1998 Die Beischlafdiebin · Die Beischlafdiebin 2000 Die innere Sicherheit (The State I Am In) · Die innere Sicherheit (The State I Am In) 2001 Toter Mann (Something to Remind Me) · Toter Mann (Something to Remind Me) 2002 Wolfsburg · Wolfsburg 2004 Gespenster (Ghosts) · Gespenster (Ghosts) 2006 Yella · Yella 2008 Jerichow · Jerichow 2011 Dreileben – Etwas besseres als der Tod (Dreileben – Beats Being Dead) · Dreileben – Etwas Besseres als den Tod (Dreileben – Beats Being Dead) 2012 Barbara · Barbara 2014 Phoenix · Phoenix 2018 Transit · Transit 2020 Undine

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2020