Direction: David Wnendt

with Levy Rico Arcos, Rafael Luis Klein-Heßling, Vincent Wiemer, Aaron Maldonado-Morales, Luvre47

Germany 2023, 119', German original without subtitles

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Sun and Concrete


OT: Sonne und Beton

Gropiusstadt is a large housing estate in Berlin’s Neukölln district that is not for the faint-hearted. For residents Lukas, Julius, Gino and Sanchez, a summer that was at first baking hot and tedious soon turns into a nerve-wracking adventure. Filled with social hardship and badass slang, Felix Lobrecht’s much-lauded autobiographical first novel is a monument to the estate and his four protagonists and is told with wit, passion and poetry. David Wnendt, Germany’s go-to director for tricky material (Combat Girls, Wetlands), wrote the script together with the author and has transposed it to the screen in a fast-paced and entertaining work that is full of situational comedy. There is plenty of violence, brutality, and “araba-boxing-sonofabitch-I-swear-I’ll-fuck-up-your-face” because here no one can avoid drugs, gang wars and family fissures, and language is in any case the best way to experiment with posing and transgressing. The boys do not even have enough cash for the swimming pool, their mountain of debt grows, a theft goes wrong, and the fact that one of them almost bites the dust in the process is only realised by the others quite late in the day. Just your average life as a teenager in the suburbs – this, too, is Berlin!(Berlinale)

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