Stephan Geene’s film Umsonst premiered in the Forum program at the 2014 Berlinale. A portrait of postmillennial Berlin-Kreuzberg, the film in crucial ways takes its inspiration from the French New Wave and the Situationist International. It focuses on members of a young generation who oppose the economic determinations that frame experience in advanced capitalism. They refuse to fit in and “aspire” and instead become drifters. Employing what the Situationists called a psychogeographic approach, Umsonst probes the prevalent discourses and historical mythologies of Kreuzberg and, in so doing, furthers understanding of how the people who now inhabit it exist and interact.

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