Internationales Festival Zeichen der Nacht - Berlin - International Festival Signs of the Night


8. Internationales Festival Zeichen der Nacht / Berlin Edition
21th International Festival Signs of the Night / Worldwide

November 1 - 5, 2023
Kino in der Königstadt - - Space : movie members GmbH - Saarbrücker Straße 24 - Berlin Prenzlauer Berg




Space Movie Member

Sunday November 5 --- 18 h (6 pm)


Contrapunctus V

Kenji Ouellet
Germany / 2022 / 0:17:30

CONTRAPUNCTUS V (5) is an experimental documentary featuring mind fragmentation, a search for patterns and Japanese urban architecture. A time capsule of sorts, centered on (biological or artificial) brain states, it makes different themes and voices converge and connect in a rhizomatic, multitasking structure reminiscent of musical counterpoint (and attention deficit behaviour symptoms).
The images show simultaneous events and multi-layered architectural structures. The soundtrack involves multiple voices interacting in a polyphony, each voice associated with one theme: there are quotes about sleep, capitalism and work, the emergence of Artificial Intelligence, the effect of the internet and related technologies on the brain, and quotes from people suffering from dementia.
Japan is according to recent statistics the country where the population sleeps the least, and has the worlds largest percentage of older adults. It is in those ways and others at the forefront of issues and trends that are global. The film is not a straightforward portrait of the cities it shows. They become metaphors and a point of departure for a reflexion on those global themes, as well as symptoms of time and space disorientation. In a world where the border between work and free time is increasingly blurred, the time when we sleep and dream may be the last area completely free of work. We are (often voluntarily) trying to change that.
Many try to sleep less (to different and sometimes extreme degrees, like those experimenting with polyphasic sleep) in order to work more, often motivated by the productivity mindset. A correlation has been observed between lack of sleep or disruption of sleeping patterns and the onset of dementia.
In parallel to our brains striving to multitask and adapt to media technologies (involving changes in attention patterns, some addictive behaviours etc.) and our presently unavoidable ageing-related neurological decline, we witness the increasing capabilities of an old fantasy, artificial intelligence.


The director will be present for Q&A



Simon Plouffe
Canada / 2022 / 0:16:22

Eastern white pines submerged under the waters of a hydroelectric reservoir on unceded Innu territory transform into flames. This exploration between water and fire illustrates our current climate emergency through multiple stories about the relationship between a community and it's land. In a dark, ambiguous environment, minuscule particles drift slowly before the lens. The image focuses to reveal spruce trees and tall pines, while Innu voices tell us the story of this territory, this flooded forest. Muffled percussive sounds graduatrees gradually transform into firebrands as whispers bring back the stories of this forest.lly become louder, suggesting the presence of a hydroelectric dam. The submerged



Ghosts in the Cloud Forest

Karl Nussbaum
United States

LIFE IS A TWO-WAY DREAM shows the way in a world undergoing rapid change, with polarisation and globalisation going in many directions. We are in an age marked by the adoration of youth, fixation on the present and extreme individualism. The wisdom from the shaman’s worldview from the old Sami religion helps weave together another interpretation and story.




Jay Kholia
India / 2022 / 0:13:08

The long poem Duswapna (Nightmare) addressed to a woman named Mrinal (which in Sanskrit would mean Delicate or Lotus) paints strange pictures in colors and sounds; aurality / visuality of which adds to the woman’s anonymity. And yet, the poetic enunciation by the Gujarati modernist poet Suresh Joshi acquires certain universality in its surreal imagery and sonic asymmetry, where the moon turns green, her body turns green that bites green, darkness turns green; the dancing fairies and the wind playing the flute fills the invisible air. The poet sees a golden idol in Mrinal. Who is she - his lover? his utopia? his dreadful dream? He walks through the crowds, effacing his face… who is faceless? Through his poetry, prose, criticism, the modernist Gujarati poet infused an internationalist environment and that deeply manifests in the poem Duswapna, the short film of the same name attempts to capture its nuances in abstractions - both in sounds and images where the resounding recitation by Mahendra Bhagat embalms the enunciation. His recording wasn’t available in its completeness but that absence perhaps deepens the poem’s overall ambiguity so the film’s...



The End of the World

Ali Aschman
United Kingdom / 2023 / 0:03:00

How do we relate to the concept of climate catastrophe on a personal level? The filmmaker draws a parallel between various threats of climate change and her own visceral and emotional experience of grieving after an immense and sudden loss, questioning her capacity to care about humanity yet nonetheless showing a glimmer of hope for the future.


A Crooked Path Through The Dark

David Franklin
Ireland / 2022 / 0:25:52

A butoh dancer (Atsushi Matsuda, of the internationally-renowned group Dairakudakan) travels across Tokyo on his way to rehearsals, traversing a subconscious landscape that bridges the interior world of the self with an exterior world that extends through the city to the cosmos. In reflecting on a dancer’s creative process, "A Crooked Path Through The Dark" offers a phantasmagorical look at the ties that bind the individual to the world around them, the connections we form with our environment, and the role of personal experience in shaping both lives and artwork. As storms boil and earthquakes rattle, we witness the visceral and moving process of destruction and renewal needed for the creation of a new performance.



The Goddess of Potong Pasir

Sze-Wei Chan
Singapore / 2023 / 0:07:57

This film is an intimate portrait of a mother’s love for her young daughter, as she teaches her about women’s strength and independence via the manifestations of the goddess Durga-Kali. Their rituals are a celebration of beauty, strength, life and the impermanence of it all. We see a unique expression of faith and love across diverse traditions from North, South and East India., that meet uniquely in the Indian diaspora in Singapore.





Competition Short Film, Cinema in Transgression, Documentary - Focus and Thematic programs