Cycling the Frame: Starring Tilda Swinton

In 1988, director Cynthia Beatt and the iconic actress Tilda Swinton embarked on a filmic journey along the Berlin Wall to create the short film CYCLING THE FRAME. Riding her bicycle from the Brandenburg Gate to the suburbs, passing by lakes, fields, and checkpoints, Swinton retraced the concrete and oppressive structure encircling West Berlin, cutting through neighborhoods and buildings, seeming indestructible at the time. One year after filming, the Wall was opened and the process of reunification of Germany began.


More than 20 years later, in 2009, Beatt and Swinton reteamed and retraced their ride, but this time weaving though both sides of the fallen wall. THE INVISIBLE FRAME depicts this poetic passage and reflects on history, memory and freedom. Swinton’s reactions and inner monologues, enriched with texts by Stevenson, Yeats and Akhmatova, and a soundscape by Simon Fisher Turner, create a deeply engaging and personal vision. Together these films offer a fascinating journey through time and bring a poetic and meditative view on one of the most important events of the 20th century.


Icarus Films will release both features on November 22, 2011.


These works have been seen in various festivals around the world: Premiere at the Viennale – Vienna International Film Festival 2009, KunstFilmBiennale Cologne 2009, German Theatre Festival Leipzig 2009 stories, Glasgow Film Festival 2010, Thessaloniki Documentary Festival 2010, Brive Film Festival 2010,

Achtung Berlin Film Festival 2010, Pesaro Film Festival 2010, Festival of German Films 2010, Split Film Festival 2010



60 min. / Color / 2009



28 min. / Color / 1988