MSU Cinema International Presents Quirky, Urban Fairy Tale "Cleo" This Week
Murray State's Cinema International program continues its series of German films this week with the 2019 film Cleo, directed by Erik Schmitt with Marleen Lohse and Jeremy Mockridge. Austin Carter speaks to program director Dr. Thérèse St. Paul and German professor Dr. Roxane Riegler ahead of the free, public screenings.
From the Murray State Cinema International website:
"This is a 'modern urban fairy tale.' Cleo works for a tourist office in Berlin and lives a lonely, isolated life. Since childhood, she has been hoping that a magical watch will help her turn back time and save her father, who died when she was ten years old. When she meets the young adventurer Paul who knows of a hidden, secret treasure, Cleo takes us along on a fantasy journey through Berlin's history, based on true stories or urban legends."
"Cleo is definitely the main character, but we should not forget that Berlin as a city is also a main character," Riegler begins. "It is presented as a city with a soul and a personality. There are a lot of unknown places that we will see as Cleo is looking for the treasure. In Germany, it counts as a kids' movie, but I do not think that does justice to the movie. It can be watched as a kids' movie, but there's so much more to it. There's this declaration of love to Berlin. The working title was Story of Berlin, but they went in a different direction."
Riegler says the main character's name is a reference to Clio, a muse of Greek mythology. "She's the muse of history," Riegler explains. "We learn a lot about Berlin's history. It looks a little lighthearted, but I think the depth of this movie is that [Cleo] opens her heart again to the world and becomes more approachable and finds not only love but also friendships."
"What the children will like are the special effects and some very comical scenes. It's an adventure story. I think kids would think, 'okay, are they going to find the treasure or not? Will she be able to turn back time?' But for adults, and especially if you know a little bit about German or Berlin history, it was really interesting because there were a lot of things I did not know about."
Murray State's Cinema International will present Cleo on Thursday, February 16th, and Saturday, February 18th. Both screenings are at 7:30 pm in Faculty Hall, room 208, on MSU's main campus. Screenings and following discussions are free and open to the public.
For more information on the Cinema International program, including how to donate, visit its website.