Announcing the first competition films

69th International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, 26 April – 1 May 2023

Announcing the first competition films


The International Short Film Festival Oberhausen is announcing the first ten films selected for the International Competition of its 69th edition. The great strength of this competition is its global reach, reflecting short film making across the world. Eight countries from three continents are represented in the current selection (Austria, Finland, France, Indonesia, Mexico, Serbia, South Korea and the US). Six of the works are by female directors, including Lynne Sachs, winner of the 2020 Grand Prize of the City of Oberhausen for “A Month of Single Frames”. The competition will comprise a total of 50 to 60 works; the final line-up will be announced in March 2023.


Documentary formats are exceptionally well represented in this preliminary selection. They address a variety of historical, political or personal issues ranging from the consequences of the Yugoslav Wars to the problematic coexistence of humans and crocodiles in an Indonesian Tsunami-prone zone to drug trafficking in Mexico or a day at a US medical centre.


Gorana Jovanović examines the aftermath of the Yugoslav Wars through the lens of a football tournament between six former Yugoslav republics 30 years later in the Serbian production Lopte (Balls). In Swerve (USA), Lynne Sachs has five performers wearing corona masks recite poems by Filipino-American poet Paolo Javier in a Queens market – a meditation on poetry and image production in a global pandemic. Christina Perschon portrays the 90-year-old artist Isolde Maria Joham concisely and pointedly in the Austrian film Bildwerden. In Saya di Sini, Kau di Sana (A Tale of the Crocodile's Twin), Taufiqurrahman Kifu shows the precarious coexistence of humans and crocodiles in the tsunami danger zone; in Flora (Mexico), Nicolás Pereda reflects on the portrayal of the Mexican drug trade in film; South Korean Jeamin Cha devotes herself to a mysterious illness that primarily affects women in the digital age in Nameless Syndrome. Patient (USA) by Lori Felker is a mixture of documentary and feature film that follows a patient's emotional journey through a day at an American medical centre. Finally, Veronika Eberhart combines material of Hanns Eisler's exile in Hollywood with excerpts from Hollywood films of the 1980s and her own material in a search for memory and truth in Garten sprengen (Austria).


The two experimental feature films also pursue very different approaches and themes. Matti Harjua's Finnish production Ekstaasi (Ecstasy) locates ecstasy somewhere between the search for pleasure and the destructive power of capitalism. In Ora Tutto è Silenzio (All is Silence Now, France/Germany), Gustavo de Mattos Jahn follows 12-year-old Liu through the streets of her city.


The films

Bildwerden, Christiana Perschon, Austria 2022

Ekstaasi (Ecstasy), Matti Harju, Finland 2022

Flora, Nicolás Pereda, Mexico 2022

Garten sprengen, Veronika Eberhart, Austria 2022

Lopte (Balls), Gorana Jovanović, Serbia 2022

Nameless Syndrome, Jeamin Cha, South Korea 2022

Ora Tutto è Silenzio (All Is Silence Now), Gustavo de Mattos Jahn, France/Germany 2022

Patient, Lori Felker, USA 2022

Saya di Sini, Kau di Sana (A Tale of The Crocodile’s Twin), Taufiqurrahman Kifu, Indonesia 2022

Swerve, Lynne Sachs, USA 2022


Oberhausen, 13 December 2022


Press contact: Sabine Niewalda, phone +49 (0)208 825-3073, niewalda(at)