FNE at Berlinale 2023: The Fabelmans (USA) Out of Competition

    The Fabelmans by Steven Spielberg The Fabelmans by Steven Spielberg source: berlinale.de

    BERLIN: An new film by Steven Spielberg is always a special event and with the American director receiving an Honourary Golden Bear at this year’s Berlinale the out of competition gala screen of Spelberg’s latest The Fabelmans promises to be one of the highlights of this year’s festival.

    Spielberg who among his many accolades has received three Oscars to his credit is also being honoured with a Homage at this year’s Berlinale which will screen a selection of his films in addition to The Fabelmans.  The lineup is Bridge of Spies (2015), Duel (1972), E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982), Jaws (1975), Munich (2005), Raiders of the Lost Ark-Indiana Jones (1981) and Schindler’s List (1993).  The sheer diversity of Spielberg’s talent makes for some stunning viewing.

    The Fabelmans is a fitting choice for a gala screening that seeks to pay homage to this great director as the film is somewhat autobiographical.  The story of the colourful Fabelman family, and son Sammy’s passion for amateur movie-making is Spielberg’s homage to his own journey to a successful directing career, making it his most personal film to date.

    Sammy Fabelman played Mateo Zoryan Francis-Deford by is eight when he discovers the power of the movies. It is 1952 and his parents take him to see Cecil B. DeMille’s The Greatest Show on Earth. Sammy is fascinated by the train crash scene and recreates it with his model railroad. Encouraged by his artistically inclined mother, Mitzi, played by Michelle Williams, he starts filming it with his father’s 8mm movie camera. He then stages little movies around the house, first using his three younger sisters and later, after the family moves to Arizona, the members of his Boy Scout troupe.  Sammy’s dad Burt is an engineer played by Paul Dano. His father’s work means the family has to make a number of moves during Sammy’s childhood with the family eventually ending up in Northern California.  As Sammy grows up the older Sam is played by Gabrielle La Belle.

    The fact that Spielberg’s family moved when he was a small child from New Jersey and he grew up in Arizona already marks this out as a film with a lot of his own life as background.

    The film is sure to give us a number of interesting insights into how one of cinema’s greatest director’s was formed artistically. 

    The Fabelmans (USA)
    Directed by Steven Spielberg
    Cast: Gabriel LaBelle, Michelle Williams, Paul Dano, Seth Rogen, Chloe East