Europe

Previously acclaimed for his essayistic documentaries, Philip Scheffner has now ventured into fiction. Zohra, played by Rhim Ibrir, already featured in Scheffner’s Havarie (Berlinale Forum 2016), is living in a town in southwestern France. She has a severe case of scoliosis. Volker Sattel’s camerawork examines X-rays, follows Zohra to the hospital and to an indoor swimming pool for rehab and sits right next to her or behind her on the bus. The images are crisp and flooded with summer light, the sense of place and space is so precise that we know each of the bus stops along her way: first Poste, then Piscine, then Europe.
When Zohra’s condition improves, her residence permit is not renewed, so she has to go back to Algeria. Her case worker shrugs his shoulders: it is out of his hands, he says, nothing he can do about it. A fade to black marks a turning point in the story after which the heroine disappears from view. Scheffner continues to vary this game of the visible and the invisible for a while until dream and everyday reality fuse in the summer heat and glaring sunlight to create a shimmering narrative in the subjunctive.
by Philip Scheffner
with Rhim Ibrir, Thierry Cantin, Didier Cuillierier, Sadya Bekkouche, Hassane Ziani, Zoulikha Ibrir, Thomas Blanchard, Jane Resmond, Laurence Masliah, Marwane Sabri
Germany / France 2022 French,  Arabic 105’ Colour World premiere

With

  • Rhim Ibrir
  • Thierry Cantin (Doctor)
  • Didier Cuillierier
  • Sadya Bekkouche
  • Hassane Ziani
  • Zoulikha Ibrir
  • Thomas Blanchard
  • Jane Resmond
  • Laurence Masliah
  • Marwane Sabri

Crew

DirectorPhilip Scheffner
Written byPhilip Scheffner, Merle Kröger
CinematographyVolker Sattel
EditingPhilip Scheffner
Sound DesignSimon Bastian
SoundTristan Pontécaille
Production DesignNicolas Lefebvre
CostumesSandrine Bonheure
CastingPhilip Scheffner, Pascal Capitolin, Caroline Kirberg, Bahijja El Amrani
Assistant DirectorPascal Capitolin
Production ManagerNathalie Aubaret
Executive ProducerCaroline Kirberg
ProducersCaroline Kirberg, Merle Kröger
Co-ProducersThomas Micoulet, Karim Aitouna, Meike Martens
Commissioning EditorRolf Bergmann
Co-ProductionBlinker Filmproduktion GmbH, Köln, Deutschland
Haut les mains Productions, Lyon, Frankreich
Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg, Potsdam, Deutschland
Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Cinéma

Additional information

German distributor: Grandfilm, Nürnberg, Germany

Philip Scheffner

Born in 1966 in Homburg an der Saar, Germany. He lives and works as an artist and filmmaker in Berlin. He showed his films Havarie (2016), And-Ek Ghes… (2016), Revision (2012), Der Tag des Spatzen (2010) and The Halfmoon Files (2007) at the Berlinale Forum. Europe is his first feature film production.

Filmography

2003 A/C; 42 min. 2007 The Halfmoon Files; 87 min., Forum 2007 2010 Der Tag des Spatzen (Day of the Sparrow); 100 min., Forum 2010 2012 Revision; 106 min., Forum 2012 2016 And-Ek Ghes...; 93 min., Forum 2016 · Havarie; 93 min., Forum 2016 2022 Europe; 105 min.

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2022