Berlin Bouncer (2019) - full transcript

An exciting piece of Berlin's cultural history from the time of the fall of the Berlin Wall to the vibrant present.


No admittance for young men without ladies.

I'm telling you again. Everyone move back!

We need a bit of room here. Move back.

I'm trying to be as polite as possible.
Please move.

There's no room in there, but go on in.
Hi, Samantha.

Hello, hello. Oh, it's Julia.

Go away or I'll push you. Got it?

Move to the side.

I'm sorry, it's not possible.

I'm the guardian of excess.

I really think
that's the most important task.

Accompanying people
in their ecstatic state.

It pains me, but some people don't fit in.
Then I have to say "no".

I can't tell you what
the secret formula is.

The rules are different for every bouncer.

What he's looking for
in those who approach him.

But there are a few general rules.

Be yourself, for one.
Don't disguise yourself.

Although in Berghain and Kater Blau,
people are supposed to dress up.

But dogmas aren't my thing.

I've had enough...

I think it should go here.

I'm going to make you a star.

- How are you?
- Great, very good. Hello.

- Nice.
- I'm Smiley.

G.I. Disco isa presentation

of the music that black American GIs

brought over to Germany
in the late 1970s and 1980s.

What's known as
old-school soul, funk and disco.

If that's something you're into,
then we're into you.

Good evening.

You paint a picture every evening.

I'm responsible for that picture.

Every evening.

We have to make sure
that on leaving, everyone says,

"Great people, music and atmosphere.

I met a woman. I met a guy..."

Was it an evening
full of sex, drugs and rock'n'roll?

- He's with me.
- Wait a minute, please.

- Guys. Just a minute, please.
- No problem.

Thanks.

In general, when I'm at the door,

and have a gut feeling about someone...

When I'm in doubt, I say no.

It could be their body language,
their attitude.

Their mood. After talking a bit...

I try to have a little chat with everyone.

Even if it's just a "hello".

I listen to how they answer.

And evaluate that. I get a feeling.

Did you sleep at all?

Yes, I only need an hour.

Mr Dietl, this is where our trip ends.

For you, I mean.

Can't we drive in through the back?

No.

But I did tell you before, didn't I?

The issue last time
was the gate being open.

Oh, it won't be open anyway.
There's a construction site there.

So that means
you'll be driving in from the front?

We don't know. But we
don't want to be filmed while driving in.

The rules that are in place...

One doesn't need to question them.

One of them being that certain things

should stay where they happen.

I've said this a few times before.

When selecting guests,

we have a responsibility

to make sure those inside
can be the way they want to be.

There are certain moments when I think,
"Man. I'm really sorry."

A feeling of compassion.

It all has to do
with how you perceive things.

The state you're in while working.

How the week went for you.

Whether you let things get to you.

I always imagine
that when I depart from this life,

I'll enter an intermediate circle of hell,
like in a Hieronymus Bosch painting.

I'll have to repeatedly knock.

And they'll say, "No. Not you."

In a permanent time loop that never ends.

I won't be able to die in peace.

Instead,
I'll be caught in a kind of purgatory.

"Buzz, buzz."

It makes you crazy.

CLUB NIGHT

After getting out of the army in 1989,
I wanted

to do an MBA in Berlin.

Then the Wall fell and my plans
fell through. I studied a bit.

But the nightlife became more dominant.

All these things opened up.
People occupied spaces, squatted houses.

They turned them into venues for events.

It drew me in.
I lost interest in studying.

STUDENT DORM
BERLIN-ZEHLENDORF 1990

I've been working for 22 years

Asa bouncer
in front of various doors in Berlin.

Normally, working in the gastronomy trade

lasts until you're 30.

Then it's time for a proper career.

Or you wind up opening your own bar.

I've done that and don't want to again.
Though it could happen again.

It's an absurd profession.

In effect, I'm giving people something.

That's why people give me
positive attention.

And lots of interesting people
gather in one place.

Lots of young, pretty,
interesting women pay attention to me.

It's an interesting,
but ambivalent vocation.

I'd call this my workroom.

But for me, work is life.

That's why my computer's here.
And there's a bit of room.

And I've hung up some pictures.

I'm not sure what I can say about them.
That's me.

See it? I'm dressed up as Liberace.

And that's Louis XVI.

The Sun King. One of the Sun Kings.

With my delusions of grandeur,

I like being associated with him.

That's very important for me.

It's Gisele Bündchen
with an important phrase.

"An orientation on utopia
is the only real way out

of the inhumanity
that global society finds itself in."

It's one of my life mottos.

I took this cell phone shot
at 9 am after a night in the King Size.

I knew after being in Berlin two weeks

that the chemistry was right for me here.

Either the city found my pulse
or I found the city's pulse.

I joined the army as a military policeman

because I wanted to do precisely
what they wake up every day to do.

In America, you'll see
"To protect and serve" on the police cars.

Maybe it was the idealist in me,

or the little knight
that wanted to come out.

But I wanted to protect and serve people.

Up there, just behind that tree
was my room.

That was the entrance.

Here in front is where we had
our formations in the morning.

Like this. Then we went jogging.

I didn't have to tell anyone
to do something twice here.

TONY
FORMER GI

It shaped who I am.

I gave an order and it was carried out.

Then they got their asses moving
right away.

Right away.

Seeing me Asa military policeman
induced fear and anxiety in people.

No one got in our way.
No German policeman.

Then I had to go through
all the bureaucratic steps.

There were people...

who I felt were moving too slowly
or not handling things properly.

People who contradicted me.

Who challenged what I said.

And I had to swallow it.

Instead of saying, "Do you know who I am?"

My brother Oliver had a series of events.

He asked me if wanted to be a bouncer
at one of the events.

That was here in Mitte,

in the railway arches between
Hackescher Markt and Alexanderplatz.

That was my first job Asa doorman.

The conditions
were so different back then.

There was a door handle,
and the door opened inward.

You always got in the way of yourself.
It was totally unsafe.

But amazingly, it all worked out somehow.

No one wasted time
thinking about what could happen.

You see? It works.

No, it's been working the whole time.

- Turn your head more to the side.
- Like this?

In 2007, I had an exhibition in Berghain.

No one knew I'd taken photos
back then in East Germany.

That I was a trained photographer.

Why would they? I was a bouncer.

I wasn't working Asa photographer.

Feel free to try... Just like that.

I think selling yourself is only okay

if you can still do what you like.

But if I have to buckle under and

shoot product shelves in discount
supermarkets to pay the rent...

That's not my passion Asa photographer.

Max had been closely looking
at my photos for five years.

He's in the same agency as me.

He's the youngest
of all the DJs represented.

At Ostgut Booking.

He needs publicity photos.

DJs travel around the world

and are promoted for events.

Organizers always ask for photos.

Where should I put this?

Is that bag a real one?

My photo bag? Yes.

How did you wind up owning it?

A nice story, actually.

It was a gift for my 50th birthday.

For once in my life, I wanted...

to travel with a Louis Vuitton photo bag
and a face tattoo.

- Hello.
- Hi.

ZEITGEIST: SVEN MARQUARDT
PANEL DISCUSSION

We just wanted to see the other side.

We didn't really want to leave home.

But just find out
what was on the other side.

What were we being deprived of?

What weren't we supposed to see?

Why couldn't we decide for ourselves?

I went from Friedrichshain district

directly over Oberbaum Bridge
into Kreuzberg.

I ordered a juice
in the first café I could find.

No one knew the word "juice".
I thought I was so cosmopolitan.

- What did you order?
- A "juice". In English.

And...

It was cute.
So I was suddenly in the West.

I was going to a photo festival
in the South of France.

At a certain moment,
I was standing at the Berlin Wall.

I was on the other side.

At what was then Bernauer Strasse.

I was standing on the observation tower.

I looked out over East Berlin.

I thought,
"If I stay here in West Berlin...

I'll never be able to go back
to the other side.

That seemed so absurd to me

that I decided to return to the East.

I kept thinking "do I go or stay?".
All my friends had gone.

The whole country would be bled dry.

Losing all the good, interesting people
who would simply disappear.

It was all so demoralizing.

Suddenly, friends were knocking
at my apartment door in Prenzlauer Berg.

They said,
"Hey, MARQUARDT. The Wall is open."

I think that everyone affected
first had to learn

what freedom even means
beyond that stupid wall being gone.

Suddenly, millions of people sensed

that they had lost their identity.

At worst, their jobs were suddenly gone.

Some people's entire existence collapsed.

I think such a thing also left a trace
on those people working creatively.

I dove head first into the club scene.

Those were places
I found to be completely reunified.

For everything converged there
from both parts of the city.

All at once, taking photos
no longer felt so important.

They all told us, "Don't go there.

There are only Nazis and skinheads.

It's dangerous for black people.
You shouldn't go there."

But my friend Karl and I went over

and only found love.

Everyone was like, "Hey, you're so cool."
There were lots of hugs.

We asked,
"Where are the Nazis and skinheads?"

"Who?"

So we decided
everyone could stay in the West.

And we'd enjoy the good life.

Suddenly there was a world
that didn't exist before.

But it was the same in West Berlin.
Before, there had been discos.

The Dschungel. Everyone went there.

All those discos were now empty.

In a reunified Berlin,

everyone partied in big, vacant halls.

In demolition buildings.

It was completely new for everyone.

It was the beginning
of a new youth culture, a new music era.

Between the female streetwalkers

one finds new, trendy bars.

An insider's tip for tourists
from Berlin, New York and Tokyo.

People marvel at one another
like in an exotic zoo.

Right in the midst of it all,
the Tacheles culture center

stands like a house for beasts of prey.

Mitte is hip. Kreuzberg is out.

I'm 99% sure
that this was "Obst & Gemüse".

Along with Tacheles,
it was one of first clubs in Mitte.

That was in 1992 or the end of 1991.
I'm no longer sure.

In East Berlin, it was a bar.

No, it was a fruit and vegetable shop.
Thus"Obst & Gemüse".

They built in a bar and sold beer.

Hundreds of people stood outside.

The entire street was full of people
with beers they'd bought here.

Traffic came to a halt here.

Well, there wasn't much traffic then.

- And this was the Mitte Bar.
- Yes, it was right here.

This was also where I had...

my first big fight.

I broke my jaw in that fight.

There were about 15 English guys.
Construction workers.

They didn't like the fact that Karl and I

weren't letting some people in here.

Because they were doing coke
and boozing it up.

That evening, they decided
they'd get rid of the two bouncers.

We ran around over there

and wound up at Charité hospital.

We all sat together.
A couple of them were there too.

No one said anything. Everything was fine.

PHOTOS: BEN DE BIEL

Those safety pins. That was 1977.

I had them.

- Me too.
- You did?

I was ten, going to school.

My earlobe was swollen and infected.

Back in East Berlin during the punk era,
I wore strange, heavy things in my ears.

It's a wonder that my ears didn't rip off.

Wearing lots of jewelry to go out...

It was a bit like wearing armor.

I think the fact that we met
really symbolizes

the changes everyone went through,
entering into a new era.

For a new awareness of life in the 1990s.

It was a strange time.
It was like we were outside of the law

here in the East, especially in Mitte.

There were clubs in obscure cellars.

In factory buildings.

I brought you water
across the dance floor.

- Really?
- I thought you needed a glass of water.

I'd been watching you
dance for three hours straight.

On the dance floor.

I seem to recall us sharing an ecstasy.

That's how we met.

We wound up talking.

Weekends got progressively longer.

There were two days left for sleeping.
Then the new weekend started.

That said,
I remember it being a wonderful time.

Mario sometimes saw me
arriving totally pale and gray.

He'd ask me if everything was okay.
I said, "Sure."

It was...

Those kinds of nights
did take their toll on you.

All the excesses.

Being a bouncer was logical
as I've never been a drinker.

So I wasn't a good cocktail mixer.

They have to taste their drinks.

Nor was I much into music.

I couldn't be a DJ.

So being a bouncer was the only choice.

I had always been big and strong,
never one to fear confrontation.

This here was the entrance
to Delicious Donuts Research.

This is where I started working in Mitte.

I started
in the first January week of 1994.

- And then...
- Nice to see you.

After two months, I joined the management.

Incidentally, I wanted to rename this spot
"Frank Künster Square".

I spent four years and seven months
here Asa bouncer, I believe.

It felt like 20 years.

This was the spot in Mitte
where countercurrents

to techno culture started whirling.

People said we were the revenge
of the normal people in the club scene.

I have to say,
I tend to glorify things in retrospect...

But we were like an intellectual pole

in this hedonistic world.

We always tried
to combine culture with parties.

With things like spoken-word poetry

and performances by people
who tried to stimulate the mind

however they could.

- What?
- Can I ask you something?

Do you guys know Stefan from WMF?

Our meatloaf.

- You don't have a Sony.
- What did you do?

- Played with his nipples.
- She played with his nipples.

- No, she isn't...
- Can I come in?

- Paula, can you unzip your zipper?
- Oh, no.

- Please...
- Why?

Wow. Yes.

- Is that good? Should I take it all off?
- Take it off.

- Free those babies.
- I don't want to shock people.

You can't shock anyone, Paula.

And if they're shocked, we'll punch them.

We are now standing in front...

I think this was the fourth Cookies.
I always mix up the count.

Bobby didn't work here yet.
He started with the next Cookies.

- No.
- That's what you just said.

- I don't remember.
- No, I didn't say the next one.

No, the next one was
in Saarbrücker Strasse. I'm 100% sure.

This was number four. That was fifth.

- What about...
- Ziegelstrasse?

- Yes.
- That was before this one.

That was where they didn't let me in.

Imagine, my first attempt
to enter Cookies failed.

In Saarbrücker Strasse?

There was a tiny door.

And everyone knew our names.

So we opened the door and heard "Smiley!"

- "Frank!"
- "Smiley! Frank!"

It's true.

- All we did was say, "You."
- "You."

We're talking about

a pool of 400 people.

After applying 40 or 50 times

for jobs at different security firms,

I received just one response.

I had an interview.

I haven't heard back from him
to the present day.

Maybe we can call him up and check...

I think it must have been

in the early 1990s, in 1993 or 1994.

Then I looked around
to see what else I could do.

In Berlin, related to security.

Not only club security,
but also in general.

Property protection.
At events. Things like that.

And...

I found they all had one thing in common.

An sour face. All of them.

They were impolite.

They looked down at people. All the time.

So I thought,
"Okay. I'll do it differently."

We'll smile at everyone.

And always stay friendly.

You're the boss. A legend.
Look how much you've done.

Look at him,
throwing around the word "legend".

But you are one.
Let me formulate it differently.

- No, no, no...
- He's a legend now too.

Wouldn't you call him a legend?

You're a hero. A hero. Not a legend.

Then I founded my security firm.

That meant that for a time,
I was the only one

in Mitte and Prenzlauer Berg

who ran a security firm.

I try to avoid the dry, uptight behavior

that's normally associated with this job.

It's one of my top priorities.

I want my guys to have fun
when they're working.

I want them to be amusing. Make jokes.

Talk to those who are coming in.
Not make fun of them.

Ensure there's an exchange.

People who do this job are accused

of having acted
in unfair and racist ways, etc.

I can only speak for myself
and the clubs where we work.

How we treat people isn't based
on their country of origin.

It's based on
ensuring the right mix inside.

Whether someone fits in with the crowd.

With what's going on in there every night.

Oh, it was open.

The fact is...

OSTKREUZ SCHOOL OF PHOTOGRAPHY
BERLIN-WEISSENSEE

How many students
do you think were in Berghain?

I have no idea.

I don't really like mixing the two areas.

Some people talk to me
while I'm working at the door.

Also about photo enquiries.

Is it unpleasant
to be confronted with that?

Well, I don't really have the time
when I'm in front of Berghain.

I mean, it's nice that people bring it up.

But I react in a friendly
but reserved way.

I'd say that's how I am.

But sometimes they just mention it,

to say something nice.

My name is Sven MARQUARDT.
I was born in East Berlin in 1962.

I enjoyed a normal childhood there.

My parents' home was

quite removed from any...
Socialist posturing.

But of course, we still lived
in this state under a dictatorship.

I didn't really know what I wanted to be.

I started training Asa photographer
back when I was living in East Berlin.

In 1981 or 1982,

also through my circle of friends
in Prenzlauer Berg,

I became fascinated
by our attitude towards life.

By the fact
that we thought we were different.

In the end, I used the camera

to capture a facet of this attitude.

That's how it all started.

So during the week, you're a photographer.

Meanwhile I can say that I work every day

with my pictures in some way.

That doesn't mean
I always have a new photo job.

But there are always
new things to organize or prepare.

It's great. Things started moving
for me in the past two or three years.

Do you feel recognized now?

You said you had difficulties
getting your work out in Berlin.

- But after all these years...?
- Yes, I do feel recognized.

The success of the club

meant I was always
in the focus of the media.

Then my photographic work
also became a focus.

Meanwhile, I'm doing quite well.

Of course, you always
tend to ask yourself,

"Do people really want me or Berghain?"

That's something you have to look at.

Repeatedly.

Of course,
the two are difficult to separate.

I'm part of the club culture.
I worked there for so many years.

Why shouldn't I exhibit, show pictures

and make a connection between the two?

So if you ask me
whether I feel recognized for what I do,

I'd have to say yes.

- I can imagine you've had better times.
- Yeah.

I even crawled out of bed for you.

I would have come to your bed. No problem.

- How do you feel on your last night?
- Very sad.

- I can imagine.
- You look sad.

- We all are. But you must be the most.
- I'm the saddest of all.

I had an exciting life before.

But this really topped everything.

Yes, I'm so sad.

This was so special
because it was so imperfect.

It wasn't... How should I put it?
It wasn't static.

I was just plonked down here,
the result of so many twists of fate...

- Did some of the neighbors here complain?
- Yes.

- Really?
- Yes.

The reason was massive pressure
from a tenant higher up.

She lived two floors above the King Size.

She said the noise bothered her.

Even though she was hardly ever there.

Frankly, it feels strange.

I spent five wonderful years here.

Now I'm standing here in an empty bar.

It's strange.

Even though we can
objectively justify closing the place,

emotionally, it's another story.

Because this room is still here.

Hypothetically,
we could have continued with it.

There are
two construction workers around here.

They look like Chippendales.
They're totally suntanned and ripped.

But... But...

I totally had to laugh at them recently.

I mean they are good to look at...
Shame, they're not here.

They're usually working away
in these things.

Ah, there they are! But wearing jackets.

Well, one is, at least.

So sometimes
you don't take the first tram.

No, you know, it's a real encounter.

Even at an advanced age.

- The one with the shaved head there?
- Yeah.

Their jaws drop and so does mine.
You know? When we cross paths.

When you've lived for so long
in one place, in one apartment,

with a rental agreement
from just after the fall of the wall,

from a stationery shop, three pages long,
with relatively low rent,

that won't last forever.

Next stop:
Prenzlauer Allee / Danziger Strasse

Then for the first time I was
affected by gentrification personally!

I'd only ever viewed it from a distance,
in areas like this, and I was wondering,

"Where are all the people from before?

Or the old people?
They can't all have died at once, or..."

I think there must have been millions
of dramas playing out in this city,

with people, who had to leave the places
where they felt at home.

It feels pretty crap, something like that.
Absolutely.

I think I've still got some East mentality
or upbringing or socialization about me.

What's happening is that an acquaintance
of mine is going to buy the apartment,

and I can stay living there.
I'm just going to trust him.

That was the day that "Doughnuts" closed.

I like this picture.

This is where
the Amano Hotel now is, by the way,

on Rosenthaler Strasse.

Here. Frank on a film shoot.
For Ralf Schmerberg.

Nice picture.

The stylist is fiddling around with me.

We have a difficult relationship.
We still do, but I like the photo.

- Nine years?
- Nine years. From when I was 20 to 30.

And although I'm 50 now, it still means...

- Is she the mother of your daughter?
- No. No.

Frank and Miriam again as models.

I know I should have tidied up. I didn't
manage to. You'll have to forgive me.

This is some artwork
that I thought up myself and made myself.

If you don't know
what "insubordination" means, it's...

basically refusal to obey orders,
in the broadest sense.

One should question everything.

Sometimes...
I try to generate attention simply.

And the point is
you can do that with colors.

If I'd done this in black and white,
it would have far less impact.

It would seem more proper,
but it would get less attention,

than this neon yellow
with the pink lettering on it.

Ten seconds, I won't take up your time.
All right, my friend?

- Glad you came.
- Glad you invited me.

- Don't we have a cool place?
- Totally cool.

- Hello, I'm Hermann.
- We met in "King Size" once.

- Several times, yes.
- I remember you well. You're the best...

- Berlin's best-looking bouncer.
- That's me! Right.

- You're a legend.
- We have a spotlight on your picture.

- Yes, Holger told me you've got the spot.
- It's radiant.

- You're an artist as well?
- Yes, I have a picture up there. Yes!

- In the boiler house.
- Yes, the highest.

The very highest picture
in the whole show.

People say the world of gastronomy,
or the party world is superficial.

Here that's to do with having
so many people in a confined space.

And you can't have involved conversations
with 200 people in one evening.

Simply for time reasons.

I have 5,000 acquaintances.
Of those 5,000 I have maybe

300 close acquaintances,
which isa hell of a lot, I can tell you.

And of those 300 close acquaintances,
there are ten real friends.

And ten real friends isa lot.

But if you see the overall scale,
like I just explained,

then I think
that number is understandable.

Can't the camera pan?

Stefanie Hillich.

That's not right.

I only just noticed
and I'm totally shocked.

BOILER HOUSE-TOP

FRANK KÜNSTER (VERY TOP)

- Thanks. Bye.
- It's outside.

Where can I get a taxi?

- Shall I call one for you?
- Yes!

- One or two?
- One. One taxi.

Well, we need one for one first...

- One to Berlin-Dahlem, yes.
- I think we need a large taxi.

- See you!
- Yes.

The occupation as such, it's one of
those things, a lot of people ask,

"Man, Smiley,
you're still on the door after 20 years!

Find a better job!"

Not knowing that the function I perform
is not a hobby.

Have a nice evening. See you, buddy.

What I always call "healthy fear",
that's always there.

Berlin isn't exactly without its dangers.
You have to take that seriously.

This job also affects your private life
all the time.

You can go to the movies
with your girlfriend,

and meet a guy
who you didn't let in on Saturday night.

Then you have a very different situation,
without your backup,

without anything and... Yeah...

And these are things that have happened.

I now have two young daughters,

and I keep my family
far removed from what I do,

so that no one will get it into their head
to do something bad.

I hope "King Size" will open again soon.

Are there any new developments?

Well, there's an explicit...

request from the landlord
for us to carry on.

We said we want to
and the landlord also said...

we can go back in.

But there's no new rental agreement.

We hope we get one
within two or three weeks.

I'm still in a lousy mood though,
because I...

can no longer believe this will work out.

I'll believe it
when we've got the key in our hand.

Because it can all still go wrong.

I've really led a bit of a dissolute life.
I mean I've always led a dissolute life,

but I've always led a dissolute life
with quite a lot of work, so...

And now I lead a dissolute life with
relatively little work. Or hardly any.

Oh well.

I just want to have some structure again.

See where I can go on Friday and
Saturday nights, open and close the door.

Say hello and goodbye.

That would be nice.

We can take a gun,

THE STATE-DISAPPROVED COMMUNE
FILM SHOOT

and place it, so no one sees anything.

But what we really need today
is to be completely nude.

- But I'm having my period.
- To be totally uninhibited.

It's not about nudity, it's about...
I don't want to stand there like some...

I don't know.

I feel like a sex offender saying,
"I want to undress you."

I don't want that.
I want you to make clear to your girls,

I'll make it clear to mine, because they
knew all along they were to get naked.

And we talked about it.
You said we have to go through with it.

So let's have
a little meeting now with the girls.

Let's discuss it with them. And, you know,

I'm not interested in that.
Leila shows off her tits everywhere.

Our girls flash their tits
everywhere in the bar.

If we have a problem on this film with...

with undressing,
then there's no point. Seriously.

A commune film
where we're all in underwear, what's that?

- Sara!
- What? Ah, okay.

Jessica.

Wait, I'll...

This is much more embarrassing
for me than for you. Cameraman, cut!

- Am I in your shot?
- Michelle! We're starting. Come here.

Pure happiness is what I'm feeling here.

I took the liberty.

30-YEAR CLASS REUNION
NORTH-RHINE WESTPHALIA

You know the last time I was in Berlin?
It's incredible.

Just after the wall came down.

26 years ago?

Yes. That's the last time I was there.

Biek visited me in Berlin once, but he's
probably the only one I'm in touch with.

Even when I'm at my parents'...

I visit my parents,
then I visit my sister in Hanau.

Then I'm going back to Berlin. That's it.

And if you... I don't know, if you
look at the country here and the people,

I don't want to call them backward,
but they're kind of...

It's just a simpler life here,
because people live differently.

And I think that's good that they
focus on themselves and their environment.

And the environment here is so healthy.
There are lots of beautiful things here.

But I don't need
to be here for so many days, you know?

SISTER'S HOUSE - HANAU

There was a key moment, when I realized
that Frank was different, and had plans.

It was Christmas Eve,
and we were about to unwrap the presents.

And I knocked on his door and said,
"Frank, are you coming for the presents?"

And Frank wouldn't come out of his room.

He'd locked himself in. And he's never
celebrated Christmas with us since.

Not once.

And then he was never there.
Frank was always away.

I don't know where you were.
Not in school.

A postcard from Spain arrived.
Sometimes Frank was away for weeks.

I don't want to act all happy
when I think everything is crap.

And even then I had world-weary thoughts.

Then those conflicts! I didn't want
to grin and bear a dumb game.

- I said I wasn't playing. Basta!
- Yes, and you can understand that.

- And the film is... about your life?
- Yes.

I see.

- About how I live.
- So we see how a bouncer lives.

Yes, about how a bouncer lives.

And his family.

Next stop Rostock Central Station.
ROSTOCK / WARNEMÜNDE

This train terminates here.
All passengers please alight here.

I never had a car.

And you don't have to
change trains 15 times.

And you're here in two and a half hours,
completely out of the city.

And actually I do this about once a year.

It's about peace
and connecting with yourself.

I always need these moments
to see the horizon.

In all the years,
whether with alcohol and drugs or without,

as well as the physical exhaustion,
from being awake at night,

there's also an emotional exhaustion.
It's a bit like time-lapse photography.

In need to stand back for a moment,
in order to enjoy it again.

Would you say that
you're happy being on your own?

Hm?

On your own, you have to make sure
you don't forget how to be a couple.

But of course it sometimes seems simpler,
and it's more comfortable,

not having to take
someone else into account.

But in fact, precisely that
isa really great experience.

I mean, we're probably born into
this world just as much for that reason.

To take into account
someone else and their...

wishes
and sensitivities and differences...

To accommodate those things.

But I think I get on fine alone, yes.

But could you imagine
being in a relationship at the moment?

Then I think I'd be in one.

I thought that, round the houses, you were
leading up to that with your question.

I promised myself at 15 or 16

that at this age I wouldn't end up
hanging around in some dive

staring at 18-year-olds' asses.

I thought it was completely tragic,
what I saw back then.

It's a different era today, of course,
and men my age are a different generation,

and I'm not the only one.

There are many people, who make up
a new gay generation in this age group.

It's not like in the 70s,
where 40-year-olds were isolated,

because, in my environment as well,
there are many great, strong examples

of emancipated gay men,

who are getting older.

WAS A WICKED TIME - BANKSY WAS HERE
- BUT KING SIZE IS ALSO VERY COOL

This was up in here before.
Probably you don't remember.

One centimeter more.

The most important thing for us
was to keep the patina, you know?

It took a while, because we made
a real effort with the fine details.

We aren't really even properly finished,
but it's good so far.

- This way. Thank you.
- You're welcome.

Without an invitation,
it's absolutely not on tonight, kids.

I don't mean that in a bad way. We've...

Without exaggerating,
we've invited over 1000 people too many.

- Yeah?
- Yeah. And only 100 can fit in here.

Officially we open in ten minutes,
and we're already full.

Over here. Hello, darling.

- Are you a director now?
- Yes, yes. But who cares about that?

- Congratulations.
- First of all, Sarah.

Oh, I thought you were hugging everyone.
- No, no. For God's sake!

Why are you so late?

- Congratulations, my dear.
- Thank you.

- Hello.
- Hello. Glad you came.

Karo, Ingo, hello.

Hello.

You'll still have to wait a second.
Really. Just a moment. Please be patient.

I thought that was a bit gray.

Did we make a note
to have more contrast? Sure.

Yes, I remember.

I found that too light.
Here, the skin tone. And here, too.

- But did we touch it up?
- Yes, it was a large scan.

- It was a large scan, right.
- And we said more contrast and darker.

Mario.

There will be two venues in Berlin.

One is the Palazzo,
and the former cemetery.

And the Italians, the two curators,
were thinking about...

putting up one of mine, the only color
picture that will be in the exhibition,

a portrait of me.

This was at Robert's, in his
first apartment, in Stargarder Strasse.

Third courtyard.

That was the entrance
to the next building.

He lived right at the top.

That was his typical look.

- Is that Robert?
- No, that's Jens.

He lived with Robert for a short while.
The three of us went out together a lot.

He was one of the first people
to inspire me to take pictures.

He isn't alive anymore.

He emigrated at some point and...

went to the West.

I think this picture...
For me it's a MARQUARDT classic. I mean...

If I ever did have any shots
in this photographer's existence

that managed to
capture something timeless,

then this shot has it.

This was Robert in his last apartment,
in the second one.

At the end of the 80s
in Gethsemane Strasse.

Right beside the church, with a view
out back over the suburban rail tracks.

And...

I think this was
one of the last portraits I did of Robert.

It must be great
when I just walk away, huh?

It's a typical MARQUARDT habit.

People at the door of "Berghain"
sometimes go crazy,

because I just turn around and walk off.

- It's true.
- While people wait to get in.

No. No, no. I'm not that rude.

No, during conversation
with my colleagues.

A restlessness that drives me.

Could it be when things get emotional?

Could be, a bit, Mr. Hobby Psychologist.

EXHIBITION -SVEN MARQUARDT
TWILIGHT OF THE GODS-TURIN

- Thank you.
- Okay. See you tomorrow.

Your schedule for the Berlinale?

Is that all clear?

For the Berlinale? No.

But Jörn has to do that.

ST. THOMAS
US VIRGIN ISLANDS -CARIBBEAN

What I like about Germany
is that it's very clean, man.

So how much room
do you have at this place?

That's a bunch of rooms, isn't it?

How many do you have?

Wow.

That's good, yes.

You live like a king over there.

I bet.

Here I am.
This place is called Drake's Seat.

And as you can see,
there is a fantastic view behind me.

That's one of the
most beautiful beaches in the world.

Really nice, isn't it?

And Papa suggested I call you
so you can see this.

- Lovely, isn't it?
- Yeah.

Wait. Oh God, what's all this?

- Right.
- Why would it be easier to find there?

- Because I can enter "Lukas Vogelsang".
- But did you send it?

ANNA MÜLLER-GRAPHIC ARTIST

Does Lukas Vogelgesang's text
list his references?

Right, he wrote that, too. Yes.

The deputy editor of "Die Welt" called me
yesterday and said it has to be in there.

Yes, you're right. He wrote me, too.

But it only says"published in".

- You didn't get in touch with him.
- Yes, he's right.

20 authors have written something.

It includes things
that have already been published.

- Like the piece by Lukas "Vogelgesang"
- Vogelsang.

For me it's"Vogelgesang" (birdsong).

The piece in "Die Welt"
for the opening of "King Size".

And a piece by Moritz that was published
for the opening seven years ago.

Things like that.

Even if Anna says that
Björn thought up "Useless Rabble",

it was only
based on my inspiration, of course,

because I yell that every morning,
when the kids have to go.

- When we want to go home.
- Right, "Rabble. Get out!"

It's definitely
the best title for a book ever.

That's right.

May and June were bad,
and my concern isn't so much

that we haven't earned any money,
which is absurd, but we really haven't.

It's that we mustn't fade away
into meaninglessness.

I think that's the worst thing.
But it was me who decided

to bring it to an end.

While it's still quite condensed.

Quite fun then in the end.

USELESS RABBLE-STORIES FROM "KING SIZE"

Useless rabble,

we'll just get started now,
whether people are inside or outside.

I also wanted to say thanks to everyone
who came with us over the years on this

absurd, crazy, wild, beautiful,

exhausting journey, on the whole.

I'm very happy that we did that, and
I hope you all have fun at the reading.

"We are borne into other spheres.
Particles of yearning spread in the air.

Stimulating, electrifying and then..."

"As we came in,
all heads suddenly turned towards us.

Then the door clunked shut behind us,
and now everyone's looking away.

So we must do something.
Standing there inane does not look good."

"Yes. We kissed each other.
At 'King Size'." Thank you.

So beautiful!

Glad you're here.

And you said, "Hey! Five or six years ago,
this place was far cooler."

- That was the last time I came here.
- Yes, but you're an intelligent person.

You know that everything changes,
and that perceptions also change.

It wears off.
If you go somewhere 500 times,

you can't go on thinking
it's mega-great, mega-cool.

- Will it get torn down?
- No, it will get reconstructed.

- Really totally refurbished and...
- Nice.

Useless rabble! Get out!

Totally awesome.

Previously every club,
or every era, every epoch

left its mark or shaped people
and constituted a life feeling.

In year one of "Berghain", I don't think
anyone thought it would last 13 years.

Thanks, Anke. Now for traffic on the A9
heading towards Potsdam...

I think it's great
that new places keep on opening.

I think it's equally tragic that
others close, but that's part of it all.

Ultimately I think
it balances the scales well.

I really like this road down here.

Along the way I had the thought, aged 40,

"You should stop now, you're too old."

But I wouldn't have known
what else to do. So...

I first thought about it
a few days ago after work.

After over 20 years, it'd be a lie
to say my nights don't tire me more

than at the beginning. Of course.

I'm sure I need
a little more sleep or time to recover.

But I think if there's somewhere
you still enjoy going,

then it's okay. I mean, whatever...

I don't think about the long-term effects.
I can also get those

from sitting around
at the bank for too long.

I still like driving into the night.