Screening of “The forest for the trees” with Goethe-Institut | Event Review


On Saturday, April 10, 2021, CandleX and the Goethe-Institut China co-hosted the third Mental Health Movie screening, joined by psychologist Dr. Theo A. Cope. To embrace the diversity of the Beijing community, this event was conducted in four languages, including English, Chinese, German and Chinese sign language. The event was held at the Goethe-Institut China premises in the 798 district with a full turnout and fruitful mental health presentation and discussion afterward.

The movie “The Forest for the Trees” (Der Wald vor lauter Bäumen)—directed by Maren Ade (2001)—was selected for the occasion, a touching portrayal of the struggles of a high school teacher who is confronted with a reality that is harsher than expected. Despite being Ade’s thesis for film school, it was awarded several international prizes, including the Indie Lisboa Festival (Portugal), the Newport Film Festival, and the Valencia Golden Jove Film Festival (Spain).

The artistic value of the work consisted not only in its well-balanced esthetics but also in the deep psychological understanding and rendition of human-nature, interpersonal relations, and everyday difficulties and coping mechanisms.

After the screening, Dr. Theo A. Cope, a psychologist from Raffles Medical Clinic in Beijing, presented the attachment theory (created by Psychologists John Bowlby's with Mary Ainsworth), and guided the audiences to understand it with the lead character in the movie. He also presented a conflict resolution model that we could use in everyday life to improve our relationships with other people. We ended the event with a Q&A session where many good questions on relationships, interpersonal communication questions were answered.

The CandleX Movie Nights series was started in February 2021 to raise awareness and improve the understanding of mental health conditions through movies and documentaries. Each screening is followed by a Q&A session with a counselor or expert in the field, who helps the audience debunk false myths surrounding mental health and better understand what mental health conditions are to reduce stigma and discrimination.

For more info on the CandleX Mental Health Movie series and our upcoming screenings, please add Laura on WeChat: LauraAmaranta