66 KINOS, Philipp Hartmann 2016


The filmmaker made an essay film, showed it at film festivals, received positive feedback — but than didn’t found any distribution for theatrical release, because there isn’t any audience for these kinds of films, especially in times like these, when it’s getting more and more difficult to make people spend their time and money seeing any kinds of films in cinemas anyway.

But Hartmann was driven by the need to share the film with an audience on the big screen nonetheless, so he contacted cinemas all across Germany directly, asking them if they were willing to show his work in special screenings. 66 said “yes” and so Hartmann traveled around the country, equipped with a camcorder, filming the cinemas and interviewing its makers, producing a portrait of the German shrinking cinefilic landscape.

Most of its few protagonists are well aware that they are most likely to disappear quite soon if they are not getting financed by communal and/or state
funding, which is, of course, not very cool for a mind sets defining themselves by their independence in thinking and acting. It doesn’t feel right to get money by a welfare state to offer alternative views on and about the exact same welfare state and its cultural mainstream. Either you play a part in this hypocrisy or not. Either you are dead wrong or dead.

Alternatives offered by some voices in the film — , which is pleasantly easy to watch, edited with remarkably ease for rhythm and timing, by the way — , is the transformation of the cinema structure leading to multi-functional, cultural spaces (film, theater, cabaret, lectures, etc.), film museums and the complete melting of the distinct, idealistic cinematic filmmakers island into the art worlds’vast oceans and its ever changing waves. 66 KINOS is a relevant documentary and document about the state of the art.