Off Beat

Film stills

Mano kambarys per ankštas, mano svajonės per lakios.

Breathe, when it gets cold. It is October. Young rapper Lukas senses his own self only during moments of excess. After ending his turbulent love affair with his producer Mischa, he has to compete with his little brother, Sämi, who meanwhile has taken his place. Lukas is trapped within his muted pain and torn between jealousy and worry about his little brother. His own story seems to repeat itself. Should he challenge his brother and prove to Mischa that he can make it on his own?
”Cold and it gets colder. I have felt little since he has left. Blue eyes, almost grey. Cold eyes, almost grey. Felt little since he has left and I did afterwards. And why? Why so much fuss about a human being who does not want to love. Who does not love anymore, who thinks that he does not love anymore. Path junctions, stagnation, the wish to be under pressure. The old fear of failure. Again, the endless list, where has it begun, who has cast the first stone, when did I get lost ¼? And then I laugh again. Bitterly. But at least a laugh. Right for the moment. I don't really believe in human beings. My name is Lukas Hänni and perhaps I am also wrong here.” That is the world and the feeling that has driven me to make this film. Jan Gassmann, in January of 2011
“I don't act – I am that.” What a German rapper had said about his album in the nineties should guide the whole production for this film as well. The decision to treat my material fictionally instead of documentarily rests within the theme. To illustrate a secret love relationship and especially its failure in a documentary is nearly impossible. I intended for the viewer to witness the decisive moments instead of only hearing them narrated by the protagonists,“ says director Jan Gassmann.


Berlin Film Festival - selected for Panorama programme.

Jan Gassmann

Jan Gassmann was born in Zurich in1983. He began his film career at the Swiss film collective VideoGang. The winner of the Viper Festival in Basel in 2002 and 2003, he made documentaries in South America and India before taking up studies in documentary directing and journalism at the College of Television and Film (HFF) in Munich. His documentary Chrigu screened in the Forum section of the Berlinale in 2007. Off Beat is his feature film debut.