The B-Movie: The Wild Years of West-Berlin in the 80s

photo: Ilse Ruppert

One of the treasures of this year’s Berlinale was the documentary B-Movie: Lust & Sound in West-Berlin that captured the wild and crazy years of West-Berlin in the 80s before the wall came down. I know that we commonly always think that it was the East part of Germany that was behind the wall in the case of Berlin it was actually the West part that was walled-in like a prison. It must have been a strange feeling to be surrounded by the Soviet-led East Germany and I am not surprised that this led to a lot of chaos, craziness and rebellions of the youth culture. The 80s are known for its punk and rave eras and you can still feel the influences of that in fashion and music nowadays. It’s funny when the older generations comment the 80s by saying: Oh, you remember the 80s? Than apparently you haven’t been there… I was still so young back than and too far away from Berlin deep inside East Germany that I didn’t catch anything of it. But thanks to the film B-Movie by Jörg A.Hoppe, Klaus Maeck and Heiko Lange I have a chance to relive it through a lot of footage from the time, a lot of it previously unreleased.

The film follows British musician, actor and author Mark Reeder as he moves to Berlin to discover the creative underground scene of the strange city. The film is like a collage of images from the nightlife, the street riots, the art and music scene – there is definitely a lot of sex, drugs and rock’n roll involved. We encounter a young Nick Cave as he dips into the city, we meet Westbam before the Loveparade and many more legendary characters that started their careers in this period of political instability. It was a world that was undergoing drastic changes which made everything more extreme and I think this is what made the 80s so significant in the history of Berlin. Watch the trailer after the jump and I think you will understand what I am talking about…

Mark your calendars! B-Movie will be playing at International, Filmtheater am Friedrichshain, Babylon, Kant Kino, and Filmrauschpalast starting at May 21 and at Sputnik and Lichtblick Kino from May 28, 2015.

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<a href="" target="_self">Frank</a>



Frank is the founder and editor-in-chief of iHeartBerlin. He takes photos, makes videos, and writes texts mostly about what's going on in Berlin. His vision and interests have shaped iHeartBerlin since its conception back in 2007 - and he hopes to continue bringing you the best of Berlin for many years to come.