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Asphalt Out Of The Rubble: Berlin On Film

Festival of the Future City

Watershed  |  £5 – £8.50

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One of the last great German Expressionist films of the silent era, Joe May's Asphalt is a complex cinematic love story set in the traffic-strewn Berlin of the late 1920s.

A well-dressed lady thief (Betty Amann) steals a precious stone from a jewellery shop. The aged jeweller prefers to let the young woman go, but the policeman who catches her explains he is obliged to pursue the case further. She tries to seduce the policeman (Gustav Fröhlich), and he gradually succumbs to her charms, but her criminal background dooms their relationship when an argument leads to murder.

Joe May’s sensual drama of life in the Berlin underworld is in many ways the perfect summation of German filmmaking in the silent era: a dazzling visual style, a psychological approach to its characters, and the ability to take a simple and essentially melodramatic story and turn it into something far more complex and inherently cinematic.

Musical accompaniment by John Sweeney. Introduction by Andrew Kelly, director of the Festival of the Future City.

Director: Joe May
Cast: Gustav Frölich, Betty Amann, Albert Steinrück, Else Heller, Hans Adalbert von Schlettow
PG / Germany / 94 mins / £8.50 (full) £5 (concession) + booking fee

This film screening is part of Out Of The Rubble: Berlin On Film, a series produced as part of the 2023 Festival of the Future City. The season looks at German cinema through the twentieth century. The season is presented with Watershed and South West Silents.


  • Watershed’s main entrance and Box Office are both on the ground floor which is accessible via a ramped, electronically assisted entrance door.
  • There are two Blue Badge parking spaces to the rear of Watershed on Canons Road.
  • Guide dogs and hearing dogs are very welcome.
  • The first floor of Watershed is accessible via lift from the main entrance and includes level access to all areas, including the cinemas and event spaces.
  • The cinemas and event spaces have induction loops.
  • There is an accessible toilet (with baby changing facilities) near Cinema 1. Follow the signs for the Cinemas and the accessible toilet is just on your left through the double doors before Cinema 1.
  • There are gender neutral toilets in the cinema corridor on the first floor.

Visit Watershed’s Access page for more information.

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