Memo to distributors: Buy these films from the Berlinale 2022

This year’s Berlinale was dampened a bit by the pandemic, but it featured plenty of great films that are still looking for good homes.

“This I know is true”

Taking place just weeks after this year’s all-virtual Sundance – and weeks before SXSW returns in person – the 2022 edition of the Berlin International Film Festival came at a particularly odd time in the pandemic and suffered a little for the ambivalence that surrounded him. Buzz was muted despite a star-studded competition jury led by M. Night Shyamalan and world premieres from major authors such as Claire Denis (“Fire,” snapped up by IFC ahead of its screening) and Bertrand Bonello (“Coma”) , both of whom came to the festival with films that explicitly responded to a COVID crisis that cast a cloud over almost every title on the lineup, even when the virus was not factored into the plot. (Peter Strickland’s excellent IFC acquisition “Flux Gourmet” is a prime example).

And yet, despite all the unique difficulties this year’s Berlinale has faced, the festival remains one of the world’s largest and most adventurous launch pads for new cinema from around the world, and the 2022 lineup. was rich in essential works that deserve to be seen from afar. Recent editions of the festival have kicked off must-have features like “Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn,” “Fire at Sea,” and Nadav Lapid’s amazing “Synonyms” (and that only limits the reach to winners of the Golden Bear), and there’s no reason to think any clever distributor couldn’t lay claim to anything on that level from the films that premiered there last week. And so we come to our annual plea: Buy these films!

Ben Croll also contributed to this article.

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