John Michael McDonagh’s ‘War On Everyone’ in Berlin

December 2015

The Berlin International Film Festival (Feb 11-21) has announced the first titles in Panorama – its strand that comprises new independent and arthouse films that deal with controversial subjects or unconventional aesthetic styles.

The initial features include three from the UK, with John Michael McDonagh returning to Berlin for the world premiere of War On Everyone.

The film, a satire centred on two corrupt cops in New Mexico, stars Alexander Skarsgård, Michael Peña, Theo James and Tessa Thompson.

McDonagh was previously in Panorama in 2011 with The Guard and 2013 with Calvary.

Also from the UK is David Farr’s The Ones Below, which revolves around a couple expecting their first child who discover an unnerving difference between themselves and the couple living in the flat below. Receiving its European premiere in Berlin, it stars Clémence Poésy, David Morrissey, Stephen Campbell Moore and Laura Birn.

The final UK title is Omer Fast’s Remainder, which will receive its international premiere and has a cast that includes Screen Stars of Tomorrow Tom Sturridge and Cush Jumbo as well as Ed Speleers, Arsher Ali and Shaun Prendergast.

Based on Tom McCarthy’s novel, the story centres on a man who loses his memory when he’s struck by a falling object and develops a way to reconstruct his past.

Other selected titles include Maggie’s Plan, a US feature directed by Rebecca Miller (The Ballad of Jack and Rose) and starring Greta Gerwig, Ethan Hawke, Julianne Moore, Bill Hader and Maya Rudolph.

Frances Ha star Gerwig plays Maggie, whose plan to have a baby on her own is derailed when she falls in love with a married man. It will receive its European premiere in Berlin, after debuting at Toronto in September.

French directors Olivier Ducastel and Jacques Martineau will return to Berlin having won the Europa Cinemas prize in 2005 with Cockles & Muscles, the Teddy award in 2000 with The Adventures of Felix and played in Competition in 1998 with The Perfect Guy.

The duo return with the world premiere of Paris 05:59 (Théo et Hugo dans le même bateau), a relationship drama starring Geoffrey Couët and François Nambot that unfolds over a night in Paris.

The Panorama strand will also include the first fiction feature from Ghana to be selected for the Berlinale.Nakom, from directors Kelly Daniela Norris and TW Pittman, centres on a young medical student who has to return to his village after his father dies and get the family farm back on track.

By mid-January, 32 features and 18 documentaries will have been selected for the strand.