Get your glitz on this winter at the Berlinale, a prestigious film festival that's surprisingly accessible to the public. The Berlin International Film Festival shows about 400 films within ten days, mostly international or European premieres. Films of every genre, length and format find their place in the various sections: great international cinema in the Competition, independent and art house in Panorama, films for young audiences in Generation, new discoveries and promising talents from the German film scene in Perspektive Deutsches Kino, avant garde, experimental and unfamiliar cinematography in the Forum, and an exploration of cinematic possibilities in Berlinale Shorts. The programme is rounded out by a Retrospective as well as an Homage, which focuses on the œuvre of a great personality of cinema. This year Meryl Streep receives the honour, while British director Mike Leigh is jury president.

Tip: Feeling overwhelmed by so much choice? Go to random screenings at an out-of the way theatre like Prenzlauer Berg's Colosseum - you'll usually be able to get tickets directly before the show. Or check out Berlin's most beautiful theatre, the East German jewel Kino International. The Miniloft apartments are conveniently located to the festival centre at Potsdamer Platz; close to the action yet far enough away for a break from the crowds.

Berlin Film Festival
all over Berlin; festival center at Potsdamer Platz, Mitte
February 9-19, 2012

Berlinale: Red carpet

Q&A: Rosa von Praunheim

Berlinale Bear

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