category Producer Profile: Heino Deckert


Julia's Madness


My daughter will only find the time when Berlin was divided by the enormous, insufferable Wall, already written down as history in History books. For her, that time will be as far as is the Thirty Year War for me. What will be written in those textbooks are dates and facts, but she will only hear stories if they are told.


Filmmaker Hannes Schönemann tells the story of a love affair between himself and a Danish woman, Julia Szabad – a story that spans over several decades and stretches between two countries placed in opposing camps of the Cold War. Julia met Schönemann when she visited East Germany on a cultural exchange program during the 1960s. From that moment and until Julia’s death, their love was consumed intermittently, between rare meetings, long breaks punctuated by enigmatic postcard exchanges, and historical events experienced separately, from different corners of the world. A spy for the Danish Foreign Service, Julia was caught in a web of intrigue which proved too complicated for her.


Schönemann’s first-person documentary, which mixes home videos and footage from films produced in the GDR in the 1970s and 1980s with material shot in the present, is a moving act of recollection which captures, in gorgeous cinematic form, the insidious violence of the states involved, whether on this or that side of the Wall.


1999 - DOK Leipzig, Germany

1999 - Filmfest Potsdam, Germany

1999 - IDFA, Netherlands

1999 - FilmKunstFest Schwerin, Germany


Deckert Distribution