Berlinale

Angela Schanelec – I Was At Home, But #Berlinale2019

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9 min. and 48 sec.

German director Angela Schanelec discusses her non-conventional approach to filmmaking in I Was At Home, But.

Play Podcast
9 min. and 48 sec.

PODCAST| Sarah Bradbury interviews Angela Schanelec, director of the film I Was At Home, But.

To listen to the interview, click on the ► icon on the right, just above the picture

German director and screenwriter Angela Schanelec spoke to us about her film I Was At Home, But, including the inspiration behind the title, how she saw the central character Astrid, played by long-time collaborator, actress Maren Eggert, and how she went about searching for the just the right boy to play young Philip. She also talked us through her non-conventional filmmaking style which resists linear narrative, leaving a collage of images and moments for the audience to piece together and to find their own answers to the questions the film raises about existence and art. She also expressed how it was wonderful it was to have the film in competition in Berlin’s film festival where the movie and its actors are based.

I Was At Home, But: Astrid’s 13-year-old son Phillip returns wordlessly after he has disappeared for a week. Mother and teacher speculate that his disappearance may be related to the loss of the father. Only gradually does everyday life get going again. The questions Astrid faces make her look differently at her middle-class life and her job in Berlin’s cultural scene. Her concept of art is also changing. At home, it is becoming increasingly difficult for a single mother to accept that her son leads a life of her own. Then Phillip comes to the hospital with a blood poisoning. Worn between worry, failure and guilt, Astrid loses his nerve. But Phillip and his little sister do not turn away from her. The family structure decays. The camera always takes a step back, giving mother and children the space and time to rediscover their emotions. These scenes are framed by a classroom rehearsals on Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the purchase of a broken bike and other loose storylines that resonate with each other.

To discover more about the film, click here.

  • Reporter
    Sarah Bradbury
  • Guest
    Angela Schanelec
  • Interviewee role
    Director
  • Film title
    I Was At Home, But
  • Festival section
    Competition
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