Three couples who migrated to Switzerland decades ago have to answer a question that followed them all their lives: go back home or stay? Now as they are retired the answer matters not only to them but to their childrens‘ fami- lies as well. Who will take care of the old folks here or there? When they arrived as guest-workers from Turkey and Yugoslavia back in the day, their hope of going home af- ter making some money kept them from learning German. Now they regret not to have opened up more towards the Swiss culture. At the same time they realise to have lost track of their „own“ cultures as well. read more


Sfountouris survived a brutal massacre committed by the German occupying forces, in which he lost his parents and thirty more relatives. An intimate, reflective film about the quest for peace and the almost insurmountable difficulties linked to true reconciliation – an open-ended journey.

Switzerland 2006
Regie: Stefan Haupt
105 min, Stefan Haupt, 35 mm, Farbe, OF mit dt. UT


Two young Swiss lovers have to interrupt their journey through the desert because of the breakdown of their vehicle. Social meeting place is a small office with the only pay phone in the surrounding area. Faced with this unexpected situation, the two start to get to know the people and their culture totally differently. While he aims to fix the damage of the truck as fast as possible in order to continue their journey, she quickly takes to the mysterious strange culture.

Algeria/CH 2009
Regie: Mohammed Soudani
90 min, 35mm, Farbe, OF mit dt. UT
read more


Warmth and bitterness, fear and hope are the feelings evoked in this authentic film about a Kurdish family emigrating to Switzerland. In an asylum seekers’ shelter they prepare the interview on which their residency permit depends. The story has been developed with people from eight different countries, amongst them the leading characters, Düzgün Ayhan and Fidan Firat.

Switzerland 2001
Regie: Nino Jacusso
90 min, 35mm (blow up), Farbe, türkisch-kurdisch-deutsche OmU


According to an ancient faith, everyone is accompanied in life by two invisible angels. The angel on the right shoulder records your good deeds, while that on the left shoulder records the evil ones. At the end of your life, the decision is taken whether you go to heaven or hell. Halima was left ten years ago by her son Khamro, who went to try his luck in Russia. Halima fears that if she dies, her coffin will not fit through the narrow front door and will have to be lifted over the walls of the garden. read more


When writer Federica De Cesco published her first bestseller at 16, she became a literary icon. 80 books later and she is firmly ensconced in the hearts of a million readers. Director Jacusso accompanies the writer on inspirational trips to Japan and Malta, casting an eye over her shoulder during the creative process, and offering a personal insight into the passionate writer’s professional development and work. In addition, female readers talk about how the writer’s courageous female protagonists have been an important role model for them and give the audience an aural regalement of De Cesco’s work in Europe’s most beautiful libraries. read more

Forbidden Voices

The film tells the story of three female bloggers from Cuba, Iran and China who risk their lives every day. Yoani Sánchez, Farnaz Seifi and Zeng Jinyan do not get intimidated by their countries‘ dictatorial regimes. These young women represent a cross-linked generation of modern resistance fighters who threaten the federal information monopoles of their countries through their blogs, with facebook, youtube and twitter. The Swiss filmmaker Barbara Miller accompanies these modern rebels and shows how they denounce the falsities in their homelands, build political pressure and cause worldwide response by doing so. read more


Forget Baghdad is a documentary traversed by the filigreed figure of the author, a son of Iraqi immigrants in Switzerland. He stages four exemplary witnesses to an unacknowledged story: that of Jewish-born Communists forced to leave Iraq for Israel in the fifties and immediately becoming the tormented and painful objects of «internal» chauvinism and racism, largely ignored by the international public. Samir’s film draws its force from a magnificent narrative construction in which the thread of his own biographical progression is woven into the testimony of four Jewish Communist intellectuals from Iraq who fled to Israel, and into an evocation of cinema as the «cradle of imagination». Valentino, the star of silent movies dressed up as a Bedouin, or Paul Newman playing the part of a Jewish liberator are icons that contests the reality captured by the author. Indeed, throughout his investigations, he paints a rough portrait of Israel, a nation that systematically discriminates against any Jew of Arab origin in favour of whomever may resemble, thanks to his European background, the glorious founders of the State. Thus today, even in the Promised Land, there are exiles who, like Samir, waver between striving to be – and being from nowhere. read more


Villi Hermann and Andreas Seibert, a Swiss photographer living in Tokyo, travel to China three times in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Andreas Seibert captures the constantly changing everyday life in China. For many years he has been interested in the problem of the internal migrants (“mingong”). 150 million farmers leave the rural regions to work in the huge cities. In his film the film maker and the photographer cross China from north to south and from east to west.

Switzerland 2008
Regie: Villi Hermann
86 min, Video, Farbe, OF mit dt. UT
In Kooperation mit BFI Tirol, AK-Tirol und Südwind
-Tirol read more


es wahrzunehmen.“ 1982 drang der Foltertod von palästinensischen Flüchtlingen im Lager Chatila bei Beirut durch Jean Genets Netzhaut und holte ihn ein: Nach 30 Jahren hat er noch einmal Literatur geschrieben. Sein Gesicht war wie verbrannt, schildert seine Begleiterin Leila Chahid Barrada, als er aus Chatila zurückkam. Er sperrte sich ein und schrieb, jedem Reflex, den die Niedergemetzelten auf seiner Netzhaut auslösten, jedem Gedanken folgte er in düstere Gänge. Auch solchen: „Das Recht ist auf ihrer Seite, weil ich sie liebe. Doch würde ich sie lieben, wenn das Unrecht sie nicht zu einem Wandervolk gemacht hätte?“ „Memory-composer“ hat man den Schweizer Filmemacher Richard Dindo genannt. In GENET IN CHATILA führt er Mounia ein, eine junge Französin aus algerischem Elternhaus, die Genets Reise zu ihrer Odyssee macht. Ihre uninszenierte Schönheit, ihre unaufdringlich hartnäckige Präsenz, ihre Jugend, die gegen das Vergessen setzt, schlagen eine Brücke zwischen der Solidaritätsbewegung und der „Wickie, Slime and Paiper“-Generation. (vt) • Erwähnung der FIPRESCI-Jury Locarno 1999 Richard Dindo (1944 Zürich) ist Chronist grenzgängerischer Figuren. Filmographie (Auswahl): ARTHUR RIMBAUD (1990), ERNESTO „CHE“ GUEVARA – DAS BOLIVIANISCHE TAGEBUCH (1994), GRÜNINGERS FALL (1997) read more


Jarreth Merz, an actor of Swiss-Nigerian extraction living in Los Angeles, finds himself grappling with his heritage when he discovers that his father has died. According to Nigerian tradition, the first-born is in charge of his father’s burial. But who is this father? And why does Jarreth feel morally bound towards a family he hardly knows and who has never really been particularly interested in him? Thus starts a journey of discovery into Jarreth’s origins.

Switzerland 2008
Regie: Kevin Merz
75 min, Video, Farbe, OF mit engl. UT
read more


George looks after his little sister in a remote part of Romania. They are all alone in the world. And even if fate overtakes them, life will reassert its claims.

Switzerland 2003
Regie: Ruxandra Zenide
34 min, 35 mm, Farbe, franz.-rumänische OF mit engl. UT


After 30 years abroad, Algerian-Swiss filmmaker Mohammed Soudani returns to his homeland to find it scarred by years of civil war. Accompanied by Swiss photographer Michael von Graffenried, who has documented the Algerian civil war since 1991, Soudani seeks out the photographer’s subjects to discover the human fate behind the photo. Many individuals did not even know they were being photographed at the time, and for some this is the first time they discuss harrowing memories.


CH/FR 2002
Regie: Mohammed Soudani
90 min, DCP, OmeU
read more

Hunger-genug ist nicht genug

Hunger is one of the most serious and complex problems of ourtime. Although it is estimated that it would be possible to feed asmany as twelve billion people today, a billion people on this planetare suffering from hunger. How is this possible? As a former SwissState Secretary for Economy, David Syz is an insider of internationaldevelopment policy. On an investigative tour around the world heexamines interrelationships and searches for solutions. And theyare not all that far away from each other. read more


Cemal Miran, a student, joins the Kurdish Democratic Movement in Turkey. After the military coup in 1980, he is arrested and brutally tortured. He fights against the persecution in prison with a 40-day hunger strike, falling into a coma as a result. Upon awakening from the coma, Cemal finds that he is handicapped.

Switzerland 2003
Regie: Yusuf Yesilöz
52 min, Video (16:9), Farbe, türk.-dt.-kurd. OF mit dt. UT


Anka Schmid shows in this movie by means of archive material, clips from the original works and interviews the unconventional, playful work of remarkable artist Isa Hesse-Rabinovitch. Amongst other things this portrait shows her fight for her poetic work in the male-dominated Swiss film scene of the Seventies although her huge international success. Working as illustrator, reporter and photographer, she dared as a 67-year-old to try the new medium of video after experimental short films. She has left us with a manifold and timeless collection of film and video achievements.
  read more


This film was shot around the same time as Les Maîtres Fous (1954) and marked Rouch’s departure from a straightforward ethnographic approach to his distinctive “ethno-fiction” approach in which the film is improvised with his West African friends.
In Jaguar , Damouré, Lam and Illo play the roles of young Africans who, at that time, migrated from the interior during the dry season to the Gold Coast in search of work. Their picaresque and rambling adventures along the way provide the antic story-line of the film. The different episodes of the film were worked out by the actors at the time of shooting.
„A film like Jaguar was fun. It was shot as a silent film and we made it up as we went along. It’s a kind of journal de route – my working journal along the way with my camera. We were playing a game together, we were all in the same car going down to the coast. … We shot the film like that in one year. The narration was done later on, and the film was not edited on a beach but was actually filmed in the camera in the final order you see it on the screen. I brought the film back two years later… we improvised the commentary in one day and it was first class.“ Jean Rouch read more


The film documents how immigrants from Sri Lanka und Turkish Kurds adjust to a new and difficult life in Central Europe and how the local inhabitants ‘host’ them. Faced with an increasingly pressured sociopolitical atmosphere in the nineties, with growing racist tendencies, it was our aim to provide a view into the experiences, emotions, fears and hopes of the refugees along with some encounters with the native population. Exchange is not only the theme of the film, but is also expressed in close, intimate and trustful collaboration with a collection of documentary miniatures. (Karl Saurer)
  read more


The Rahmani family fled from Macedonia to Switzerland during the Kosovo war in 1999. After years of living in their new country, they suddenly have to face a deportation order to leave. Out of desperation, the family father and former music teacher Rasim tries to organize an Albanian dancing club in order to collect supportive signatures… By repeatedly changing time levels, the film shows how the loving teacher and father turns into a scared, desperate and deracinated refugee in Switzerland. read more


„Many years ago, men and lions used to live together in peace and were allies. They protected each other. But little by little men forgot about their deal and in the end the lions did the same.” These are the words that Lionel’s dying grandfa- ther whispered to him in his village in Africa. Lionel is an 11-year-old boy who lives happily in Switzer- land with his mother and step- father. During a school trip to the zoo, Lionel is irresistibly attracted to an old lion lying in a cage. The lion starts to communicate with him and asks him to find a way to set him free in order to go back to Africa. read more


17 year old Mamlakat dreams of being an actress. Unfortunately this is a rather difficult plan in the village in Uzbekistan where she lives. As a theatre company visits the town on tour she considers her chance to be come. Even though she misses the show she doesn’t miss one of the actors later that night. Shortly afterwards she comes to know that she is pregnant. To find out who the father of her child is she embarks on a journey across central Asia, together with her father and brother. Thereby they meet a lot of shady characters, including a marriage impostor.
  read more


Maria Schell – a glamorous name, a dream career, and a tragic fate. A thrilling chapter in international film history full of episodes worth telling, with a bitter end to the life of an artist.

Austria/D/CH 2002
Regie: Maximilian Schell
90 min, 35 mm, Farbe, dt. OF


At the end of the 1980s, when Carlos Menem came into power in Argentina his economic policy and the subsequent boom of the country seemed to be IMF’s proof for neo-liberalism and therefore globalisation being the economic system of the future. However, in 1998 the dream was over and the country broke down in another economic crisis which led to a rebellion of the population in 2001. In his movie, Solanas adresses corruption, waste of public funds and the short-sightedly profit maximization which lead to the crises and also pleads in favour of a world more fair. read more