DIRECTORS STATEMENT

Christmas. A holiday associated with contemplative and harmonioustogetherness that makes us think about our childhood with melancholy, aboutthe candle-lit Christmas room, the smell of sweet cookies, festive music andplenty of presents.

But that's not all it is. The stress of organizing and executing this annual mega-event, the anxiety of having difficult arguments and long hours with the familyas well as the fear to disappoint, or be disappointed by inept gestures anduninspired gifts are as much a part of this holiday as a Christmas tree andChristmas cake. Rarely anything divides us like Christmas.

This emotional conflict between gleeful anticipation and pre-programmeddisappointment, between childish excitement and bad premonition, between thenostalgic re-enactment of old rituals and the bitter inventory of familyrelationships is the starting point for my story ONCE AGAIN.

I centred the story around the two sisters Kathi and Suse. Ever since theirmother died, they arrange the family Christmas. And even though the family tiesare not the best, they celebrate together with high expectations, which mostlyend in disappointment.

This is not an easy task, especially for Suse. As the elder sister, she is troubledwith the inherited mother role. She feels responsible for uniting the family underthe Christmas tree and obligated to make certain sacrifices to do so. Herdesperate attempts to repeat and re-enact all of the traditions that her mothercreated in the past is comic and tragic at the same time.

Tragicomic also describes the emotional chaos of the younger sister Kathi, whonarrates the story. On one end she participates in the charade, on the other sheis searching for other alternatives or possible ways out. She is torn between joyand anger, laughter and compassion, affection and disappointment, and shedoesn't know whether she should stay or run away.

ONCE AGAIN is not just a Christmas film. It is the story of two women whoultimately have to decide if they will break traditions or if history will repeatitself ONCE AGAIN.