Our Last Tango

Un tango más

- GERMANY, ARGENTINA / 2015 / Spanish / Color / DCP / 85 min

Director, Script: German Kral
Photography: Jo Heim, BVK
Editing: Ulrike Tortora
Sound: Celeste Palma
Music: Luis Borda, Sexteto Mayor
Production Company: Lailaps Pictures GmbH
World Sales: Wide House
Distribution Company in Japan: New Select Co., Ltd.

This documentary tells the story of the peerless María Nieves Rego and Juan Carlos Copes, dance partners who made the allure of Argentinean tango known to the world. Today, they speak up and reflect on their 50-year history of love and conflict, presented also through magnificent dance sequences. Including footage of Maria’s conversations with the young dancers who play the couple, the film succeeds to eternalize the sensual and impassionate dance called tango.

[Director’s Statement] When does a film really begin? I am not speaking about the fade-in on the screen, but of the moment when a film idea starts to form itself? To push and scream as it comes alive?

I remember very well the very first moment I met María Nieves in Buenos Aires. It was very late in the night and she was smoking a cigarette outside a milonga. I told her that I was preparing a film about tango and that I would very much like to talk to her. She was kind and charming—as she always is—and gave me an appointment a couple of days later at her home.

I remember very well that after just thirty seconds of sitting on her sofa and talking to her, I knew that María had to be in the film.

I remember very well, how I felt when some days after that encounter I read Juan Carlos Copes’ autobiography Quien Me Quita Lo Bailado. While I was turning the pages of this book, I couldn’t get it out of my head that the film had to be about both María and Juan, the greatest tango couple of all time!

Some years have passed since then. The making of the film became a real challenge. Sometimes a wonderful and sometimes a difficult and dangerous journey.

During this journey I encountered and collaborated with fantastic artists: first of all María and Juan, but also all our dancers and choreographers who gave their all to create startling performances. I also had a really tremendous crew behind the camera. People who love films and who all worked very hard to make this the best film it could be. I am also extremely grateful to my co-producers, who were courageous enough to undertake this journey with me.

And I will always be grateful to the generous help of Wim Wenders, my former teacher at the Munich Film School, who kindly accompanied me on this journey.

I am extremely happy that Our Last Tango will be shown at YIDFF, where many years ago (YIDFF ’99), I showed Images of the Absence (1998), my diploma film about my parents. This shows us that although we like to think our paths in life are straight and linear, much more often than we would like to think they are actually circular...In so many ways like a tango.

- German Kral

German Kral was born in Buenos Aires and moved to Germany in 1991 to study film at the Munich Film School. He is today based in both cities. His Images of the Absence (1998) won the Robert and Francis Flaherty Prize (The Grand Prize) at YIDFF ’99. His film Musica Cubana (2004, YIDFF 2005), executive produced by Wim Wenders, premiered in Venice and was popular all over the world.