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40th Seattle International Film Festival

WEST (Westen) Saturday June 7, 6 pm at SIFF Cinema Uptown
Director Christian Schwochow is scheduled to attend.

West is a dramatic love story and psychological thriller set in 1970s Germany, based on the novel “Lagerfeuer” (Campfire) by Julia Franck. Nelly and her son, Alexei, want to leave East Germany and start a new life in West Germany. Nelly pretends to marry a West German, who takes them over the border. Two suitcases, a schoolbag, and a cuddly toy are all they take along. West really starts where other stories end—with a successful escape. Unfortunately, it’s when Nelly makes it to West Germany and applies for émigré status that the authorities take an interest in her. Until this point, Nelly believed that her former boyfriend (and the father of her child) had died, but she learns that in fact, he was a spy. He may still be alive, and what’s more, the police insinuate that Nelly might know something about it. The second half of the film transpires largely within West Berlin’s Marienfelde Refugee Center, where all émigrés take a series of never-ending tests and interviews before they can integrate into society. Some pass through easily, while others remain in limbo for months or even years. West is a realistic drama of a woman trying to deal with humiliation by a system that she hoped would set her free.

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  • Hannchen M.

    I was there last night. Since this was my first meetup with the German group, I did not know anybody. I will try again at a different time.

    June 8, 2014

  • Lia

    Hab's leider nicht geschaft :(

    June 7, 2014

  • Catherine L

    Not feeling well today. Something I ate. So I will need to pass on this. Have fun!

    June 7, 2014

  • Ruth

    Unfortunately I won't be able to make it tonight.

    June 7, 2014

  • Monika

    You need to be there at least an hour before to get in line. They might open up the front three rows for standby depending on how many pass holders are in the theatre. My guess is that there will be not more than 25 extra seats available

    June 6, 2014

  • Lia

    Tickets were already on standby when I tried to buy, so I'm not guaranteed a spot, but I will be going and trying to get a ticket in the standby line. Hope to see everyone tomorrow!

    June 6, 2014

  • Brigitte

    Went to see Westen yesterday - it's a must-see. Very subtle movement of the main characters brings out who they truly are in their hearts. Beautifully done!

    May 28, 2014

  • Brigitte

    I and a German friend will be going to the press screening on Tue. Sounds like a great film. See you all next time!

    May 25, 2014

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