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제16회 제천국제음악영화제

The Last Applause
Japan, Argentina, Germany | 2009 | 88min | 35mm | COLOR | Documentary


The Last Applause tells the emotional story of a group of old forgotten tango singers from Buenos Aires, who for many years used to perform together in one of the city’s most famous tango bars, the ‘Bar El Chino’. The place was named after its owner, El Chino (the Chinese), who had nothing whatsoever to do with China. His real name was Jorge García (70) and his forefathers were Spanish immigrants. ‘Bar El Chino’ had become so famous that you had to book just to get a place somewhere in the corner of this crowded bar. The recipe for ‘Bar El Chino’s’ success was the down-to-earth, honest, unpretentious true tango ambience, simple and without make-up, and the quality of all the singers, some of whom performed in the bar for almost 30 years. After the owner of the bar mysteriously died in 2001, it was taken over by his widow and her new partner. Just a couple of weeks later, this incredible place lay in ruins. The Last Applause follows the lives of these forgotten tango singers from 1999 until today. It shows their struggle to earn a living after the closure of the bar during the country’s biggest-ever economic crisis and their desperate dream to sing just one more time in front of an audience. After the old singers meet the young tango musicians of the ‘Orquesta Típica Imperial’ they are able to realize their dream: to give one last concert and to bask in the warm audience applause, maybe for the last time in their lives… 

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German Kral

German Kral was born in 1968 in Buenos Aires and moved to Germany in 1991 to study film. He worked with Wim Wenders for the first time on the feature film Die Gebruder Skladanowsky which was screened at the Venice Film Festival in 1996. His short Film Tango Berlin, starring Wim Wenders, was also screened at the 1997 Venice Film Festival. His film Images of the Absence was awarded the First Prize at the Yamagata Film Festival in Japan in 1999 and the Bavarian Young Lion Award in 2000. Musica Cubana, a documentary feature which was premiered at the Venice Film Festival in 2004 was executive-produced by Wim Wenders.
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