Berlin - Prenzlauer Berg. Begegnungen zwischen dem 1. Mai und dem 1. Juli 1990

Berlin – Prenzlauer Berg. Encounters Between 1st of May and 1st of July 1990

Petra Tschörtner


»…now we’re getting our butts kicked by the West, that’s what it looks like. Kids, some are against it, some are for it, we all want the Wall again, just you watch, it will come again, hopefully. The state has cheated us anyhow, we’ll be screwed by the second one too, it makes no difference…«

A plaintive documentary farewell to the Prenzlauer Berg district, renowned for its alternative culture. Observations during the last two months before monetary union lead Petra Tschörtner to squatters, a corner pub, alternative meetings and hip clubs, Konnopke’s snack bar and the department store GEWA. The band Herbst in Peking plays on the strip that used to be part of the Berlin Wall, pirate radio station Sender P goes on air, and at a demo in May demands are made that hardly anyone remembers.
You can still experience this dazzling open space, but the transformation can already be felt. Neo-Nazi attacks and female textile workers, who explain why their Vietnamese colleagues are now the first to be dismissed, testify to the changing mood.

As if to say goodbye, Jochen Wisotzki sings the Pioneer song »Our Homeland« in a distorted voice. Then, on the eve of monetary union, the TV news announces: »The short summer of anarchy is over […]. From now on the German Mark will rule the Alex.« –Hilde Hoffmann


Petra Tschörtner


Petra Tschörtner, Jochen Wisotzki


Michael Lösche


Angelika Arnold


Uve Haußig, Ulrich Fengler


Fritz Hartthaler, DEFA-Studio für Dokumentarfilme


Deutsche Kinemathek – DEFA Filmverleih

Petra Tschörtner

The documentary film director Petra Tschörtner was one of the most important women film-makers of the last DEFA generation, alongside Helke Misselwitz and Sibylle Schönemann. She studied at the Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF from 1978-1983. Together with Angelika Andrees, she made her first documentary film Home in 1978, but due to the explosive nature of the subject matter – the children in the home relate violent experiences and alcohol problems at their original home, for example – the film was not approved, and not screened until 1990 at the Oberhausen Short Film Festival. Her socially sensitive observations characterise her films. She died in Berlin in 2012.

Films by Petra Tschörtner (Selection)
Ruanda – Langsam vergesse ich 1995 | Marmor, Stein und Eisen 1994 | Unsere alten Tage 1989 | Schnelles Glück 1989 | Unterwegs in Nikaragua – Eine filmische Reisebeschreibung für Kinder 1987 | Der Zirkus kommt | Hinter den Fenstern 1983 | Heim 1978