Rolf de Heer’s Berlinale Competition Title ‘The Survival of Kindness’: Watch First Trailer (EXCLUSIVE) Most Popular Must Read Sign Up for Variety Newsletters More From Our Brands

Visionary Dutch-Australian filmmaker Ralf de Hare, known for several landmark films including “Ten Canoes” and “Charlie’s Country,” is in competition for “The Survival of Kines” at the upcoming Berlin Film Festival.

An allegory of racism, the film follows a black woman, who is left in a cage on a trailer in the middle of the desert. She escapes and travels through plague and persecution, from desert to valley to mountain to city, in a quest that leads to the city, recapture and tragedy.

Many of The Hare’s films are born with a single image in his mind. In the case of “Survival of Kindness,” it was a portrait of Peter DeJaeger, the filmmaker’s closest local friend, who co-directed “Ten Canoes” and co-produced “Charlie’s Country” Acted in both. A cage on an abandoned trailer in the desert.

“Just as the image of DeJagger in a cage on the trailer in the desert called for him to open the film, it was impossible for me to ignore the COVID/Black Lives Matter nexus. Every time I was writing a scene, he pushed itself to the back of my mind. It was creative, and helpful, and the pure cinematography of what was going down on the page allowed that aspect of it to go where it wanted. And I’m glad that It happened.” De Hare said in its directors’ statement.

Dejiger was unavailable for the film and Mowajemi Hussain, originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, was cast in the lead role as the black woman. The cast also includes Deepti Sharma, Darshan Sharma, Gary Waddell and Natasha Wangin.

The film is produced by Julie Byrne and De Hare with Ari Harrison as producer. The production companies are Triptych Pictures and Vertigo Productions and the film was produced with core funding from Screen Australia in association with Screen Tasmania, the Adelaide Film Festival and the South Australian Film Corporation.

Fandango Sales is handling international sales and Umbrella Entertainment will distribute in Australia.

Watch the trailer here:

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