A man sitting cross-legged on the beach. Next to him is a stack of papers blowing away in the wind.
Afire (2023) © Christian Schulz & Schramm Film

ACMI presents


Christian Petzold | Germany | 2023 | M

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Sat 6 Jan 2024

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An idyllic holiday by the sea is disrupted by an artistic temperament, in the second installment of Christian Petzold's elemental trilogy.

Summer arrives and two friends embark on a much-needed retreat at a family holiday house to focus on their artistic pursuits. Go-with-the-flow Felix seeks out inspiration for his photography project while self-important writer Leon sets the summer aside to work on the manuscript for his second novel. Upon arriving, they discover an unexpected guest in family friend Nadja who has arrived early and already taken a lover in local lifesaver Devid.

While the others take advantage of their summer idyll, Leon withdraws from the group, dishing out petty passive-aggressions. With resentments on the rise, wildfires skirt around the periphery, slowly edging closer day by day.

Curator's Note

In Undine (2020) we had water, and now director Christian Petzold returns with fire in the second part of his elemental trilogy. Lighter in tone than many of Petzold's films but with disarming emotional depth, Afire might be the perfect summer film – if you don't mind your summers cruel.

Considered one of the best films of the year, Afire premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival where it won the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize.

Screening exclusively at ACMI in Melbourne.

Format: DCP
Language: German with English subtitles
Source: Madman Entertainment
Courtesy: Madman Entertainment
Runtime: 102 mins

Event duration

102 mins



Contains coarse language


Cinemas, Level 2
ACMI, Fed Square

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