Rolf Peter Kahl – Bedways (2010)
A huge, run-down apartment in Berlin Mitte. Two women and a man, rehearsals for a movie about love and sex, that will never be shot. Acting and reality mingle into a dangerous melange. Berlin is the shelter, love is impossible, flesh is the law.
Director Nina Bader wants to shoot a film about love and sex and invites her actor-friends Hans and Marie for screen tests for a couple of days. For Nina love is not necessarily a matter of emotion – she is rather looking for an authentic depiction of sex. The intimate collaboration turns into experiments with film, love and bodies and finally has an impact on the private relationships between the three of them. It seems that the boundaries between acting and reality begin to disappear.
A dilapidated, practically empty apartment in the Berlin district of ‘Mitte’. This is where Nina and two young actors named Hans and Marie have come together to leave behind the winter cold for a few days and do some screen tests for a film. Nina is a searcher; she wants her film to make feelings visible and intends to portray love by showing real sex. But the more blurred the borders between fiction and reality become, the less Nina seems inclined to make the film at all. Hans, who knows Nina from a brief encounter a long time ago, senses that she is searching for something else. Nonetheless, he and Marie both agree to go along with the play-acting. So far, each is convinced that they are pulling the strings. But Nina’s strategies of seduction weave an ever-tightening web around her protagonists. Nina’s credo that they should not play themselves or anyone else soon becomes a trap for Hans and Marie. No wonder that it becomes almost impossible to decipher where the acting ends and reality begins. The further Nina sets off down a path to an unknown destination, the more the actors shield themselves from each other and keep their feelings to themselves. Their longing for the outside world is a palpable force, but each attempt to open up to each other ends in an emotional blow below the belt. Without a script, communication becomes balancing act; coolness and distance would seem to be the only adequate means of protection. In this world, failure can only lead to a bittersweet happy ending.