The 5th Portland German Film Festival (Nov. 7 – 11, 2014) is opening with Doris Dörrie’s The Whole Shebang (Alles Inklusive) a cheerful, yet melancholic comedy about mothers and daughters. This will be the US Premiere of her film! It is the story of an encounter of some very diverse people, whose lives are intertwined by a fateful incident a long time ago. It’s a melancholic comedy about love’s ups and downs and the shortcomings of alternative and middle-class live concepts. It’s about the absurdity of modern travelling and our everlasting longing for the south. Can you book happiness just like a holiday – all inclusive?

After a two-year film education in California and New York, and further training in Germany and a few years of working in television, German writer-director Doris Dörrie, rose to international fame with her 1985 hit “Men.” Her English-language “Me & Him” (1988), starring Griffin Dunne and Craig T. Nelson, featured a talking penis, and “Enlightenment Guaranteed” (2000) put two hapless German brothers into a teensy Tokyo apartment with a Sumo wrestler — a monumental confrontation with manhood, to say the least.

In addition to claiming fame as a sharp-eyed observer of the supposedly stronger sex, Dörrie has become an established opera director. Her production of Mozart’s “Cosi fan tutte,” with Daniel Barenboim on the podium of the Berliner Staatsoper, was released as a DVD in 2002. And her 15 published novels, children’s books and short story collections have won several literary prizes, including the German Book Prize.

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