Berlinale: Programme

Film File

Perspektive Deutsches Kino

Die Grube

The Pit

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In Roman times, thermal baths were vibrant places of public life. These bathing establishments, which were accessible free of charge, were a pivotal point of social interaction. At Bulgaria’s Golden Beach resort, this tradition has survived to the present day in a spa called ‘the pit’. Even in wintry temperatures of five degrees above zero, the water is steaming and people sit together in the hot pool, relaxing in the here and now before a backdrop of the endless expanse of the sea.
What at first sight seems to be a rose-tinted view of paradise is in reality an insightful portrait of today’s Bulgaria. This film is a touching study of a microcosm which represents an entire society; a human mosaic of personal and political stories in which smouldering conflicts and heated discussions come together to form a multifaceted whole. For here in the pit on Golden Beach is where opposing worldviews and overarching trends collide, and, floating above it all even in the most beautiful weather, is the dark cloud of monetisation that has infiltrated every last corner of our lives.

Hristiana Raykova

Germany 2019

Bulgarian, Russian, German

Documentary form
73’ · Colour · 2K DCP

World premiere


Hristiana Raykova
Johannes Greisle
Kai Eiermann
Marcus Sander
Sound Design
Laura Matissek
Stephan Zwickirsch
Production Manager
Genia Krassnig
Genia Krassnig
Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg, Berlin


Hristiana Raykova

Born in Varna, Bulgaria in 1985, she came to Germany to study in 2004. After taking a degree in political science, she began working as a freelance cinematographer and video editor. She made several short documentaries as part of her bachelor’s degree in media production. In 2014, her documentary Könige (Kings) premiered at DOK Leipzig. Since 2015, she has been taking a master’s degree in directing at the Film University Babelsberg Konrad Wolf. The feature-length documentary Die Grube (The Pit) is her graduation film.


2012 Baba Dimitra; short documentary · Semssui; short film 2013 Der einzig wahre Weihnachtsmann; short documentary 2014 H - Der Hermannsweg komplett und am Stück; medium-length documentary · Könige (Kings); documentary 2019 Die Grube (The Pit); documentary

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2019

Produced by

Filmuniversität Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF

World Sales

Filmuniversität Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF