Love hip hop, hate homophobia? Me too. I also hate sexism and a macho attitude and so do Stitch & Tchuani, the makers of Berries, an unsual hip hop party that was born almost a year ago. When I went to my first Berries night and danced like no one was watching, I looked around and was almost puzzled by the lack of gender stereotypes I faced at most other hip hop events I had gone to. Instead of gangster and bitch clichees I saw guys making out with each other and ladies rocking the turntables and dance floors. Also, the music was way beyond the ususal charts’ best of. Hanno Stecher and Dominik Djialeu compare their pearl diving (in the sea of hip hop music that is) to picking berries. Hence the name. I sat down with the duo and asked them about their concept and what to expect at OHM this Friday.
If any place could be described as a hidden gem, it’s Roamers. Walk around the corner at the very end of Pannierstraße in Neukölln and there it is: a wonderfully cosy looking café. The place is not only filled with things looking like they’ve been taken out of a Kinfolk magazine, but loads of people and there’s barely a free seat when I met Flore, the owner. Only open since January, what is it that made Roamers an instant neighborhood favorite and instagram darling? I went to Roamers for some shaksukah on a particularly grey day to enjoy this dish with eggs poached in spicy tomato sauce. It was spicy and creamy enough to comfort me as much that I was able to ignore the rain drizzling down on me. Then Flore served us some coffee and lemon cheesecake, one of the favorites from the menu. The fruity layer added the final touch to the creamy texture and I couldn’t wait to find out more about this place…
Starting tonight, expat Australian cinephile and festival director Frances Hill invites Berliners to discover her home country through film at Kreuzberg’s Moviemento. Frances, charming employee of the overall amazing crew of Moviemento, started the Down Under Australian Film Festival two years ago via crowd-funding and with the help of friends. This year, she has put together a diverse and exciting programme which includes documentaries, narrative films, and short films, as well as a couple of great events. I met Frances Hill and head of communication Berit Becker for an afternoon interview where we talked about transgender hairdressers, indigenous actors, and the new films from Australia’s film schools.
When I arrive for the interview, I am all sweaty and hectic because I didn’t find the location right away and didn’t want to make Scott McGehee and David Siegel wait. I am welcomed with a smile and the two tell me to relax. We talk about Tilda Swinton’s holding up a rainbow flag in front of the Kremlin before we go into the politics of independent film distribution and start discussing their latest film What Maisie Knew which stars Julianne Moore, Steve Coogan and the amazing newcomer Onata Aprile.
Seven years after the start of production, Miriam Faßbender’s documentary Fremd (Foreign) has finally been released in Germany. Faßbender portrays two men from West Africa who try to make their way from Mali to Europe. Being stuck in Morocco and Algiers for years, the prospect of going to Europe recedes into the distance. Fremd is a contemplative, yet highly political observation of patience and optimism in the face of despair. I met director Miriam Faßbender in Kreuzberg to talk about her film.