On 9th November 1989 the Berlin Wall came down. On that night in 2017 German broadcasters NDR took the opportunity to show Amber’s 2016 film…
In 1987 Amber Films documented the fishing and shipbuilding town of Rostock in East Germany. A year later, the film’s GDR release caused uproar, audiences responding enthusiastically to its unredacted style, the authorities cancelling screenings at the last minute. From Marks & Spencer to Marx and Engels was broadcast on Channel 4, along with the ‘exchange’ film made on the Tyne by East German film company DEFA.
In 2013 and 2014 Amber returned, having traced all the key characters in the original film – the former members of the FPG fishing co-operative and of the Brigade of Women Crane Drivers. In the film they look back at themselves in 1987, at the experience of ‘Die Wende’, the change that came with the collapse of the GDR, and over the 25 years since the reunification of East and West Germany. Asked about the openness and emotional power of the interviews, one of the participants said, ‘We’ve been waiting all these years for someone to come and ask us these questions.’
Amber Films, 2015, 90 mins
Co-production with Moving Films