Utopia Ltd.

Germany 2011, Documentary, 90' | Director Sandra Trostel | DoP Sandra Trostel, Lilli Thalgott | Screenplay Sandra Trostel, Thies Mynther | Sounddesigner Thies Mynther | Production Company Tiny Terror Productions | Distribution Rapid Eye Movies

Synopsis
The stuff other young bands only dream of: Anton Spielmann (18, vocals and guitar) and his younger friends Basti Muxfeldt (bass) and Jonas Hinnerkort (drums) set up 1000 ROBOTA and, only a few months later, land a recording contract from Tapete Records , a small indie label based in Hamburg. Two of the band members still live with their parents in an idyllic village setting outside Hamburg and are about to take their high-school exams. But it is the band that is the project for the future. They are loud, brash, against the system and want to fight the good cause – for a new youth culture. »Come on and join in, so come on and join in, come on please and dance, so come on please and dance«, they urge on their debut album of 2008. Vocalist Anton, wise to the world, always has a few cool things to say both for and against. Which the fans and the music critics just love. Yet despite the media hype and the gigs in London, their first tour only draws mediocre crowds and the money hardly pays for the youth hostel accommodation. Ditto the record sales. Before long, they get into rows with their label about lyrics and arrangements. For as music today bows to the sales imperative, artistic freedom is considered an unwelcome distraction. They split up and the 1000 ROBOTA project seems doomed to fail.

Sandra Trostel and her camera accompanied the band from the very beginning – even before they'd cut their first record. And she sticks with them, close up, documenting all the ups and downs, dispensing with a commentary, and lets the pictures and protagonists speak for themselves. An honest film about the music business, youthful emotionalism, poses, resistance and the gap between everyday reality and the self-awareness of three youths who want to make it (and who possibly could) without losing their ideals.

 

Biography
SANDRA TROSTEL was born in a village in southern Germany. After taking her high-school exams, she moved to Hamburg and took up various internships in advertising. She worked as a film editor on commercials and music videos and began a postgraduate course at Cologne International Film School in 2002. She has been making films of gigs for the band Deichkind since 2008. Utopia Ltd is her first long-format documentary film and it opened the Perspektive Deutsches Kino section at the Berlinale Film Festival 2011.

Films by Sandra Trostel
Ja, ich bereue alles (Musikvideo) 2008 | Mein Paradies ist orange 2006 | Relax it's only a ghost (Musikvideo) 2006 | Ich weiß, dass Du traurig bist (Musikvideo) 2005 | Frau Selheim und Frau Ruis 2005

Sandra Trostel
Germany
2011
Documentary
2011
School Film