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Fassbinder’s Children 

Wednesday, Feb 17 2010
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Presumably you noticed the gaping void in last month’s movie listings, between New Year’s Day and late January’s Noir City, where Berlin & Beyond had reigned for years. For reasons too painful and murky to mention, the Goethe-Institut shifted its annual festival to the chockablock fall. Stepping into the breach, B&B founder and longtime programmer Ingrid Eggers has assembled a one-day five-pack of new films from Germany and Austria. “German Gems” opens today with Tender Parasites (noon), a delicate but fraught tale of a constructed family in the New Depression. A one-of-a-kind period piece, Miss Stinnes (2 p.m.) dramatizes the wealthy young Clärenore Stinnes and her two-year, round-the-world auto journey in the late 1920s. Director Erica von Moeller (in attendance) makes extensive use of the images shot by Stinnes’ hired cameraman. Shifting tones, Norbert Baumgarten’s Being Mr. Kotschie (4:15 p.m.) inflates a midlife crisis into a comically surreal nightmare. The primetime attraction, however, is Margarethe von Trotta’s Vision (7 p.m.), starring the multitalented Barbara Sukowa as 12th-century pre-Renaissance woman Hildegard von Bingen. Late night brings the mordant Austrian noir of The Bone Man (9:15 p.m.), director Wolfgang Murnberger and actor Josef Harder’s third droll thriller centering on an ex-cop turned private investigator who stumbles onto a singularly meaty scam. Bring your appetite.
Sun., Feb. 28, noon, 2010

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Michael Fox

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