SWITZERLAND, GERMANY

DORA OR THE SEXUAL NEUROSES OF OUR PARENTS Dora oder Die sexuellen Neurosen unserer Eltern

2015 – DCP – colore – 90’

 

Direction: Stina Werenfels

Screenplay: Stina Werenfels

Cinematography: Lukas Strebel

Editing: Jann Anderegg

Set design: Beatrice Schultz

Music: Peter Scherer

Costumes: Gitti Fuchs

Cast: Victoria Schulz, Jenny Schily, Lars Eidinger, Urs Jucker

Producers: Karin Koch, Samir

Production: Dschoint Ventschr Filmproduktion AG, Niko Film, Aleppo Films, Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen, Magmafilm GmbH

 

SYNOPSIS

When her mother decides to stop administering medication to her mentally challenged daughter, 18-year-old Dora awakes, as if from a deep sleep. Dora discovers her body, her sensuality and finally, sex, too. Her parents are shocked by Dora’s sudden unbridled lust for life and, when she gets involved with a man she meets at her market stall vendor job, they are furious. Seeing her relationship as unscrupulous and abusive, they demand their daughter stops seeing her lover. But their efforts are to no avail and, when Dora’s affair leads to a more serious situation, everyone has to reassess the limits of their relationship to each other, and reconsider such topics as self-determination, trust and jealousy…

 

 

THE DIRECTOR: STINA WERENFELS

 

Born in Basel, Switzerland in 1964, she grew up in the USA, Greece and Spain. After taking a degree in pharmacy at the ETH (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology) in Zurich, in 1991 she began studying film at the Tisch School of the Arts in New York under Spike Lee, Arthur Penn and Marketa Kimbrell. Her short film Pastry, Pain & Politics won the Swiss Film Prize for Best Short Film. She made her feature debut in 2006 with Nachbeben (Going Private) which screened in Berlinale Panorama. Alongside her work as a director and screenwriter she teaches film acting at the Zurich University of the Arts.

 

 

DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT

“The film is based on the famous piece by Swiss playwright Lukas Bärfuss. (…) It seemed to me that Lukas was cutting through the flesh of our Western society and its hypocrisy. (…) The piece allowed me to enter the moral grey area of what is right and what is wrong, what is “normal” and what is not. It also gave me the opportunity to bring in strong female perspectives (…) it takes a lot of research and immersion in the reality of people with disabilities. A clichéd depiction stems from showing the disabled person from one single angle: disability. This is not only clichéd, but also discriminatory, because any human being features a vast range of characteristics. Disabled people are often shown in films as being “cute” and “heartwarming”. It has almost become a genre… But our Dora is also spoiled, hot-tempered and has an extraordinary lust for life (…).”

 

FILMOGRAPHY

1994 Fragments from the Lower East Side (short)

1998 Pastry, Pain & Politics (short)

1999 Making of a Jew (segmentof doc ID Swiss)

2003 Meier Marilyn (tv movie)

2006 Nachbeben (Going Private)

2015 Dora oder Die sexuellen Neurosen unserer Eltern (Dora or the Sexual Neuroses of Our Parents)

AWARDS AND FESTIVALS

2015 Solothurn FF

2015 Berlinale – Panorama

2015 Brussels FF: Premio Cineuropa, Premio Cinelab per la Miglior Immagine Cineuropa Award, Cinelab Award for the Best Image

2015 Luxembourg City FF