At a boarding school in the pre-war Austro-Hungarian Empire, a pair of students torture one of their fellow classmates, Basini, who has been caught stealing money from one of the two. The ... See full summary »
Germany, 1968: The priest's daughters Marianna and Juliane both fight for changes in society, like making abortion legal. However their means are totally different: while Juliane's ... See full summary »
Margarethe von Trotta
Rita Vogt is a radical West German terrorist who abandons the revolution and settles in East Germany with a new identity provided by the East German secret service. She lives in constant ... See full summary »
Danzig in the 1920s/1930s. Oskar Matzerath, son of a local dealer, is a most unusual boy. Equipped with full intellect right from his birth he decides at his third birthday not to grow up ... See full summary »
Laschen, a German journalist, travels to the city of Beirut during the fights between Christians and Palestinians to produce an essay about the situation. Together with his photographer, he... See full summary »
A divorced woman in her thirties fights a losing battle in Munich to attain belated self-fulfillment. The die is cast in a briskly impersonal society geared to male dominance and early training for career women.
Germany in Autumn does not have a plot per se; it mixes documentary footage, along with standard movie scenes, to give the audience the mood of Germany during the late 1970s. The movie ... See full summary »
This is the story of John Glueckstadt, released from the prison he was named after. He tries to find his place in society again. The townpeople provoke him, stalk him and would like to get ... See full summary »
Walter Faber has survived a crash with an airplane. His next trip is by ship. On board this ship he meets the enchanting Sabeth and they have a passionate love affair. Together they travel ... See full summary »
Three people rob a bank to help a day care center that's in debt. Wolf is captured, Werner identified, police suspect Christa is the third. She and Werner ask Hans, a clergyman, to launder ... See full summary »
Margarethe von Trotta
Katharina Blum is a young handsome German maid. She meets Ludwig, and they fall in love at once. They spend the night together. In the morning, the police bursts in her flat, looking for Ludwig : he is a terrorist. But he was no longer here. Katharina is arrested, humiliated, suspected to be a terrorist herself, dragged in the mud by the newspapers... A plea for democracy and individual rights. Written by
Katharina's car has two different license plates. See more »
The shots that killed Werner Tötges didn't hit him alone. They were aimed at Freedom of the Press, one of the most precious values of our young Democracy. And these shots - for us who stand here in grief and horror - they strike us. Just as they struck him. Who doesn't feel the wound? Who doesn't feel the sorrow above and beyond one's personal concerns? Who doesn't feel the breath of terror, the savage of anarchy, the violence which is undermining the foundations of our liberal-democratic order...
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The legal disclaimer reads as follows: 'Personen und Handlung sind frei erfunden. Sollten sich bei der Schilderung gewisser journalistischer Praktiken Aehnlichkeiten mit den Praktiken der BILD-Zeitung ergeben haben, so sind diese Aehnlichkeiten weder beabsichtigt noch zufaellig, sondern unvermeidlich.' (Characters and plot are purely fictitious. Similarities with journalistic practices of the newspaper "BILD" are neither intended nor coincidental, but inevitable.) This is a direct quote from the introduction to the original novel by Heinrich Böll. See more »
The work of V. Schlöndorff and M. von Trotta deserves high praises, especially because of their ability to overcome the certain difficulties confronted whilst adapting a work of literature into a cinematic piece, or: from one branch of art (in)to another. To give a small example, Heinrich Böll's book adopts a first-person-plural-view/narration whereas the film refrains from this approach; the essence of a documentary such an approach provides, however, can be grasped instantaneously in the film, too.
Being successful on most aspects, The Lost Honour of Katharina Blum suffers from its shortness. 106 mins. have been cleverly used by the directors, mostly by delivering the spectators what ought to be delivered essentially, but they fail in providing the links and some necessary depths to the characters and/or relations. An additional 15 minutes could have helped the directors to grave both their and the film's name deeper and in larger fonts.
I, for one, found the most fascinating part of the film to be shot in 1975: a year in which Ulrike M. Meinhof, Andreas Baader, Gudrun Ensslin, and Jan-Carl Raspe still lives; Holger Meins recently died of hunger(!); the West Germany is yet to experience what they term as The German Autumn by the 2nd generation RAF; the 1st gen. RAF members (leading members above) have not been tried yet by the time the book was published (maybe even by the time the film screened); the West Germany Police getting increasingly armed and offensive, and so on. Among all these, we witness the "system" founding and feeding itself -- as a matter of fact, nothing but its own self. The police, the officials, still prevalent pro-Nazism, and still-in-power former Nazis, the media, the social status, abuse, and oppression of the women... With the system ruling, firmly administering, and when necessary, fabricating all these tools, factors, manipulating the people, the viewer gains an insight into the closed loop that the person is trapped in. Seemingly, there is not a(n easy) way out; the ones leading to a hazy light turn out to be dead-ends. And here, the viewer begins to understand what the title really means, and how subtly it is the (condensed) narrative (of) itself.
These elements, pertaining to a "tightly-screwed" state system, all exist in the film but require a keen eye to catch them, let alone pondering on, given the length of the film. Despite its shortness, I believe that the adequate use of dialogues (even though sometimes they sound like irrelevant) and inconstant voices of characters, minute attention to decorations every here and there, Angela Winkler close-ups and her mimics, ... will convince the spectators that the directors pulled a good job, having come up with a worthy work.
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