The final day of summer in Berlin. Daybreak. Can, leaning on his car, smokes a cigarette, losing himself in his thoughts while staring at the Tegel prison. He’s as old as his classic car, a Mercedes 230E, built in 1982. That’s everything that’s left of his successful life in business.
Can, the child of workingclass parents from Kreuzberg, made his fortune with fake designer clothes and watches. In fact, he should be paying the price for that now. But he’s not that kind of person. The next morning, instead of going to prison for five years, Can wants to fly to Istanbul. For good. Berlin Oranienplatz tells the story of a young man’s last day in Berlin, as he visits the people and places that he forgot and left behind when he tried to escape his parents’ working-class life. His now unemployed parents, his ex-girlfriend, childhood friends, a cemetery, a football cage, a backyard mosque, a telephone factory – Can wants to say farewell to his Berlin, the city that’s made him who he is. But slowly he realises that the city that he wants to leave behind has turned into a different one from the Berlin in his memories. The images of the past make one thing clear to him, just like in a poem by Cavafy: No matter where you go, this city will go with you!
90 years after the release of Alfred Döblin’s Berlin Alexanderplatz, Hakan Savaş Mican writes an homage to today’s Berlin in Berlin Oranienplatz. With poetic video images and live music, as in his previous production Die Nacht von Lissabon, he tells of missed opportunities and the attempt to figure out which life is the original, and which the copy of another.