Retrospective 2009: 70 mm – Bigger than Life

By focussing on 70-mm films, the Retrospective of the 59th Berlin International Film Festival will devote itself to the powerful visuals of wide-gauge film. Twice as wide as standard 35-mm film, it is the adequate format for monumental works: screen epics, adventure and science fiction films, Westerns, musicals, as well as magnificent panoramas of nature and intimately beautiful close-ups. The high resolution, sharp picture and colour quality of these large-format images join forces with the tremendous excellence of the sound. During Hollywood’s financial crisis in the mid 1950s, 70-mm film was especially important as a technical innovation with which television could not compete. For wide-gauge film, with its visual and audio brilliance, is only able to come into its own in the cinema. The Berlinale Retrospective will concentrate on “real” 70-mm films that were originally shot on 65-mm or 70-mm negative film and then printed on 70-mm film for the screen.

“The Retrospective is also an homage to large film palaces, though only a few have survived. Which is why we are particularly delighted to have the Kino International as a venue. It opened in 1963 and was the third 70-mm cinema in the GDR. We are also pleased with the new prints that are now - thanks to their restoration by several large studios – available in their original format,” remarks Rainer Rother, head of the Retrospective.

>> English press release (pdf)

>> deutsche Pressemitteilung (pdf)


After Winter Comes Spring 

Berlinale 2009 Special Series

In autumn 2009, the peaceful revolution and the fall of the Wall will celebrate their 20th anniversary. To mark the occasion, the German Federal Cultural Foundation and the Deutsche Kinemathek have initiated a special series entitled “After Winter Comes Spring – Films Presaging the Fall of the Wall”. The project will be launched at the 59th Berlin International Film Festival in February 2009, before the films will be shown in movie theaters across Germany.


For more information see


>> Press Release (pdf)

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