Moving Films was established in the wake of the production of the film Beauty and the Bike in 2009. The company, based in Bremen Germany, is a partnership between Richard Grassick and Beatrix Wupperman. Richard spent over 20 years at Newcastle-based Amber Films, and met Beatrix, an economist with a long-standing interest in film and photography, by chance whilst teaching film production at a VideoWoche event in Bremerhaven in 1996. They have been together ever since.
Our passion is sustainable transport, and everyday cycling in particular. But we established Moving Films as a vehicle (no pun intended) for making films about wider themes about the human condition in the 21st century. As we enter into the late afternoon of our lives, the word “retire” just doesn’t figure. Instead, we want to continue to make our small contribution to the changes that will be needed for a just and sustainable future.
Our current projects are outlined below.
Beauty and the Bike
Girls in cycling friendly countries continue to cycle into adulthood, whilst in many other countries they tend to give up during the teenage years. Why?
Beauty and the Bike follows two groups of young women over a period of a year. One is from the Cycling Demonstration town of Darlington, England, where nearly all teenage girls have stopped using a bicycle. The other is from Bremen, where cycling is the transport mode of choice for most teenagers. Over the course of the year, each group visits the other to discover just why their habits - and attitudes towards cycling - are so different.
Bremenize has set itself the task of looking behind the scenes of the city’s cycling politics, to better understand Bremen’s cycling history, and to challenge the transport policy objectives of the Hanseatic city. Bremenize is therefore as much an exploration as a celebration of Bremen’s cycling culture. Beyond the statistics and policy debates, there is no doubt that Bremen’s status as a cycling city rides above all on its citizens’ enthusiasm for using the bicycle for everyday mobility. And here the city’s cycling history plays a key role. To paraphrase Karl Marx, the tradition of all dead generations weighs like a pleasant dream on the brains of the living.
From Us To Me
October 1987. Amber Films, a collective based in Newcastle, become the only British film crew to make a documentary inside the German Democratic Republic. In November 1989, a year after the film’s release, the fall of the Wall signals the end of the GDR. 25 years later the British come back…..
Warnemünde, September 2014. In their search for the characters from their 1987 film, the British crew find the place transformed. Then they filmed two groups of workers, a fishing cooperative and a brigade of women crane-drivers in a shipyard. Today there is no more fishing industry, and little of the shipbuilding.
Eurovelo 8 in Provence
In the south-east of France, there is a line marked on the map “Euroveloroute 8 planned route.” A route planned for decades, it runs through the Haut Var, passing through villages that lie in the heart of La Provence Verte, such as Varages Ponteves, Salernes.
Eurovelo8 in Provence is a voyage of discovery for two elderly cyclists who decide to follow this line on a map. In the process, they uncover the remarkable story of this yet-to-be-completed cycle route, which for much of the way follows an old railway line, whose history reveals moving stories of war and resistance. But is the vision of a European Cycle Route shared by the local population?