One Day In Europe
Elena (Luidmila Tsvetkova)
Kate (Megan Gay)
Rokko (Florian Lukas) Gabor (Péter Scherer) Rachida (Rachida Brakni)

One Day in Europe… The film's underlying premise is already contained in the title. "One Day in Europe" can mean the present, today, this one particular day in Europe. But it can also be understood as "One Day in Europe, there will be…." in the sense of "some day, in the future…" And this is where one can find Utopia. How is it possible to make a film about Europe, its various mentalities, its people? What cities should one include? What symbols? Since I not only wanted to write the film but also direct it, I had some very practical considerations to make. I live in Berlin, spent some time in Santiago de Compostela, have good friends in Istanbul and was in Moscow several times. Besides, I just had to have Moscow in a film on Europe. But what is the connection among these cities? Is there a common European way of life?

What would happen if Galatasaray Istanbul and Deportivo La Coruña were to play in the finals of the Champion's League in Moscow? Football is simple, it is watched everywhere, no matter what one's religion is. Football as a narrative bracket – I felt a certain poetry in this. And besides, it's real, not some wild fantasy. And then, what would the stories be about? How about language or the lack of one,schiff.gif how about dialects and regions, travels and travelers in Europe? We all know the situation: you arrive somewhere, you're robbed of something, you find yourself in some kind of delicate situation. And you have to talk, but you don't speak the language of the country. Already things start getting complicated – or humorous.

Four simple stories have grown out of this. A British woman in Moscow, two Germans in Istanbul, a Hungarian in Galicia (Spain), a French couple in Berlin. I wanted to make a film of small scenes, of moments that I myself have experienced before in a similar fashion. I was always concerned about the European moment, the meeting of the various European mentalities. One Day in Europe: the film is about the here and now, but it tells us about a certain utopia at the same time. Some day, there will be a United States of Europe, with Istanbul in it, and Moscow, too. And how will we communicate among ourselves? In Denglisch or Spanglish, Franglais or Frallemand? I'm placing my bet on European English, peppered with Leitmotiv and kaputt, with mise en scène and siesta, with ciao and chill-out area, with nasdrovje and merhaba.

Hannes Stöhr, January 2005


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