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Claus Mueller

Claus Mueller is  Senior New York Correspondent

New York City based Claus Mueller reviews film festivals and related issues and serves as a  senior editor for Society and Diplomatic Review.

As a professor emeritus he covered at Hunter College / CUNY social and media research and is an accredited member of the US State Department's Foreign Press Center.



New York: KINO! 2017

  In its fourth annual edition KINO!  the independent New York festival of German films presented 12 feature films including six US premieres, four productions not shown before on the East Coast and two films screened for the first time in New York. The sidebar Next Generation Short Tiger 2016 offered 12 short films from young German filmmakers. The program reflected the wide variety of themes and approaches of the contemporary German cinema.  Among the highlights of the progra...

New Directors / New Films 2017

  Since 1972 the New Directors / New Films festival has been organized each year  by the Museum of Modern Art and the Film Society of Lincoln Center. The festival has introduced to a discerning audience the most innovative new directors and new films, frequently showing the first or second feature of an emerging director. Held from March 15-26 its 46th edition  the festival presented in 63 screenings 29 feature and 9 short films from 30 countries including the USA, France, Braz...

Rendez-Vous with French Cinema

From March 1-12 the Film Society of Lincoln Center and UniFrance presented the 22nd edition of this annual French Cinema film festival showcasing 23 films including new film makers and established ones exploring a broad spectrum of themes. Among special topics covered by panels and events were interaction and mutual influence of the French and American culture.  As in past editions the Rendezvous with French Cinema included many films that revived motivations for the French equivalen...

What the Health, Kip Andersen and Keegan Kuhn, 2017 USA

This film depicts he link between the food consumed in our societies and the major  health problems plaguing most of the population. Guided by the maxim “Let food be the medicine and the medicine the food” the directors have produced an outstanding and comprehensive documentary which has few if any equals.  Providing compelling data on cancer and heart diseases and elucidating the diabetes problem which is shared by 350 million persons worldwide and costs the United State...

Museum of Modern Art: Doc Fortnight 2017

  MOMA’s presentation of innovative nonfiction films was held from February 16-26 with more than 20 features and 10 shorts, including a section of new media Canadian nonfiction films and a retrospective of Emiko Omori with six productions. As in prior editions the program covered a broad range of themes and issues as well as innovative approaches in documentary film making. This year’s edition presented an outstanding selection of films investigating global issues and problem...

Socially Relevant Film Festival, New York – Preview

Devoted to film as a medium to increase our consciousness about social issues the festival will hold its 4th edition from March 13-16 offering films, panels and receptions. Even though it is a relatively small specialized niche festival about 500 production were submitted including new feature films, documentaries and shorts, most of which had not been shown before in New York or the United States.   In the feature film section six films were selected premiering here i...

New York Jewish Film Festival 2017

Organized by The Jewish Museum and the Film Society of Lincoln Center, the 26th edition of the Jewish Film Festival was presented from January 11-24. Considered to be among the most important festivals among the more than 60 Jewish film festivals held each year in the United States the JFF is the oldest Jewish Film Festival in the US. It offers feature, documentary, and short films from around the world encompassing past and present Jewish experiences and the factors shaping them around t...

Outsider Art Fair 2017

Celebrating its 25th anniversary the Outsider Art Fair was held from January 19-22 at New York’s Metropolitan Pavilion featuring 62 exhibitors the largest number in its history and several special selections. One selection paid homage to the 25 years history of the fair by choosing artworks representing each year curated by Edward Gomez and the other displayed quilts by active quilt makers from Gee’s Bend, Alabama. The quilts will be shown later on this year at the Met Breuer. ...

Other Israel Film Festival 2016

Celebrating its 10th anniversary The Other Israel Film Festival was held from December 1-8 at the Jewish Community Center of Manhattan (JCC) showcasing nine feature and three short films attracting an audience of about 4000 individuals in mostly sold out screenings.  Viewers were drawn from the membership of the JCC but a large proportion were habitués who had attended past editions of the festival. As its title indicates the festival has a unique profile focusing on minority ...

Manifesto, Julian Rosefeldt, 2016

Until January 8, 2017 New York’s Park Avenue Armory is showcasing Julian Rosefeldt’s MANIFESTO, an extraordinary film installation which first premiered in December 2015 at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image with funding from Australian and German media and art agencies.  Rosefeldt wrote, directed, and produced Manifesto is a massive under taking, as its credits indicate, mirroring a large body of research and extensive film making.  Rosefeldt covers 19 ...

Merci Patron! (Thanks Boss!), Francois Ruffin, France, 2015

This documentary is the French counterpart to Michael Moore’s 1989 Roger & Me in which Moore attempted to confront Roger Smith, the president of General Motors. Both Ruffin and Moore engage in an empirically based analysis of the consequences of turbo capitalism and the impact of the investment strategies of large corporations that result in local unemployment and the destruction of the social fabric of the communities where their factories are located. Ruffin, a left wing journalist...

DOC NYC 2016

Established in 2010 the DOC NYC film festival has become the largest documentary film festival in North America and has quadrupled in size since its beginning.  In the 2016 edition from November 10 – 17 more than 250 films and seminars were presented to an estimated audience of more than 30,000 ticket buyers.  About 1700 productions were submitted to the fest. The program included 110 feature length documentary films.   300 industry specialist and film makers particip...

New York: Margaret Mead Film Festival 2016

Continuing its tradition of high quality programming The Margaret Mead Film Festival celebrated its 40th anniversary at its home, the American Museum of Natural History.  Established in 1977 it is the longest running annual international documentary festival in the United States.   Of the more than 40,000 submissions since its inception, 2,000 films have been shown by the festival of which 1,000 are kept in the Museum’s Mead Festival Archives. Over the years, documentaries...

New York : An Occupation of Loss, Taryn Simon

In the vast New York  Park Avenue Armory Taryn Simon presented from September 13-25 as a world premiere a uniquely themed performance piece in which professional mourners from 30 countries shared rituals of grief and mourning with a small audience. Mourners from all over the globe, including  Cambodia, Russia Kyrgyzstan, Venezuela, Armenia, Bhutan and other countries participated and shared their lamentation, The artist placed the performers at the bottom of eleven tall 48 feet high ...

Interview with Aroon Shivdasani Executive Director of The New York Indian Film Festival

Celebrating its 16th anniversary from May 7-14, 2016, the New York Indian Film Festival was the first festival in the United States devoted to Indian films and has grown to be the largest and most influential, helping to set up several other Indian Film festivals in the US. It is part of a comprehensive program in the arts offered by the New York based Indo-American Arts Council. These programs include each year a travelling group art exhibition: Erasing Borders E...

New York: 2016 Asian American International Film Festival

Held from July 21 to July 30 at eleven venues in Manhattan and Queens this year’s edition of the AAIFF included 28 narrative  feature and documentary films and 40 short films from more than 15 countries as well as four panels. The festival offered for the first time a special adjunct program from August 5-6, the Chinese Art Film Festival-NYC Stop, curated by the Shanghai Art Film Federation with four award winning films premiering in New York City. As district from other film festiv...

Zero Days, Alex Gibney, 2016. USA

It is certainly rare that a documentary covers a topical problem that has such apocalyptical implications as Gibney’s data based exploration of the current state of cyberwarfare introducing major and minor countries to a new and silent way of waging war with potential catastrophic consequences.  One does not need to be a doomsayer to realize that current state sponsored sophisticated computer hacking determined by political objectives destabilizes global security. As distinct from i...

New York: Japan Cuts 2016

Japan Cuts is the biggest festival of Japanese films in the United States featuring only films which have not been screened before in New York City.  In this year’s edition, held from July14-24, 29 features were shown of which 15 premiered in North America. In addition, 20 shorts, 12 Anime avant-garde works in the experimental spotlight festival section program and an industry panel were part of the program.  The feature film line up reflected the diversity of Japanese film and...

Interview with NYAFF Director Samuel Jamier

In September 2015 Samuel Jamier was appointed Executive Director of the New York Asian Film Festival established in 2002 by Subway Cinema which he is also heading now. The festival is considered by the New York Times to be one of the best New York based festivals, offering an outstanding line up of superb entertainment and art house films. He is currently also working as a producer for the New York based Windwellers Films which he co-founded last September. Jamier previously served as the chie...

New York Asian Film Festival 2016

Held from June 22-25 at Lincoln Center and from July 6-9 at the School of Visual Arts theater the 15th edition of the New York Asian Film Festival presented 51 feature films in sold out screenings of which more than half were New York City premiers. The festival has certainly come a long way from its beginnings in a small theater in Chinatown, its passage through the Anthology Film Archives barely holding about 180 people to the much larger Walter Reade venue at Lincoln center w...

New York: Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2016

Of all global non-governmental organizations focusing on the protection of human rights the New York based Human Rights Watch ranks among the largest and most influential.   In five geographic divisions encompassing Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and Central Asia, The Middle East and North Africa, and a United States program more than 80 researchers carry out their work in virtually all countries; executing systematic data analysis, generating information through fieldw...

P.S. Jerusalem, Danae Elon, USA, 2015

In this compelling documentary Danae Elon provides an insightful view of her family’s three-year experience living in Jerusalem to which she returned in 2010 after an absence of 20 years. She prefaced her film with a statement from her father, the renowned liberal Israeli intellectual Amos Elon who left that country in 2005, “We have seen that what men thought was true was often more important than the truth itself”, an observation fitting perfectly her frank portrait of life...

The People VS. Fritz Bauer, Lars Kraume, Germany 2016

As a recipient of the German equivalent of the Oscar, The Lola, and several other top awards, Lars Kraume’s fact based feature film documents the investigative work of Bauer as the attorney general, who tracked down Adolf Eichmann overcoming all obstacles that German society posed in the 1950s. Bauer was appointed state attorney general in 1956 by the Governor of Hessen, Georg August Zinn, who had struggled with Bauer against the Nazi regime. Bauer was a Jewish lawyer and that pursued hi...

New York: Martin Creed The Back Door

In the review of the Frieze Art Fair 2016, one of New York’s most important annual art events, The New York Times used the term Circus to capture the growing entertainment component of the fair. The Wall Street Journal headlined its article on Creed “The Madcap Art of Martin Creed” and advised that he “seems to be vying for the title of the village idiot of the art world” and the press folder for the Creed show uses the title “Subtle No, Awesome Ye...

New York: Bosnian-Herzegovinian Film Festival, 2016

The thirteenth BH film festival was held at the Anthology Film Archives and the School of Visual Arts from May 25-28.  Opening the festival, a film forum was held for the first time at the Anthology, presenting two non –competitive documentaries, Faruk Sokolovic’s 2015  No Excuses  and the  2015 100 Million Dollar House by Reshad Kulenovic. They covered severe human rights violations in the Balkans and the West Bank and were followed by ...


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