Frenchman Abel Tiffauges likes children, and wants to protect them against the grown-ups. Falsely suspected as child molester, he's recruited as a soldier in the 2nd World War, but very ... See full summary »
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 »
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.
The journey of Michael Padovic, an American professor who arrives with his wife, Helene, at a Portuguese convent where he expects to find the documents needed to prove his theory: ... See full summary »
Manoel de Oliveira
Luís Miguel Cintra
In an ethereal, high-ceilinged room, women stand, waiting. Perhaps it's Purgatory and they're dead. In the room, two young women, one an actress and the other a psychologist, watch the last... See full summary »
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 »
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 »
At a wake one night in 1945, a group of aged women recall the life of one of their number. Sixty years before, Thérèse was barely 20 years old when she eloped with her boyfriend, Firmin, a ... See full summary »
Somewhere in the endless steppes of Central Asia lies a treasure. One man holds the key to it, a fragment of an ancient map. But in his restless quest, Charles isn't looking for fame or ... See full summary »
It's medieval times. Kohlhaas merchants with horses. When going to the local fair to sell his horses, is forced by a noble to leave him part of the merchandise as payment for traveling ... See full summary »
Frenchman Abel Tiffauges likes children, and wants to protect them against the grown-ups. Falsely suspected as child molester, he's recruited as a soldier in the 2nd World War, but very soon he is taken prisoner of war. After shortly serving in Goerings hunting lodge, he becomes the dogsbody in Kaltenborn Castle, an elite training camp for German boys. Completely happy to take care of these children, he becomes a servant of Nazism, catching boys from the area as supplies for the camp. Written by
Frank Wallner <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Prior to the school fire, a caption says "Paris 1925". Upon his arrest as an adult, Abel, through his narration, remembers the fire as having happened "twenty years ago". This would place his adult scenes in 1945, but when he joins the French army after his arrest it is before the German occupation of Paris which would place his arrest in 1940. However, Abel is slow-witted and possibly does not have an accurate sense of time. See more »
Count von Kaltenborn:
This whole beautiful country, to which we have given our souls, is utterly doomed. It's going to be wiped out of human memory. Our entire heritage, even our name, our ancestors' names, wiped out, all wiped out!
See more »
Through the eyes of a French man who never grew up, The Ogre depicts wartime life in Hitler's Germany. At the same time that the film takes up loaded questions of power and subjugation, recreating the process of recruitment and training for the Aryan army, it further challenges the viewer by presenting the growing Nazi regime in a very human way. A great deal of the variety in characterization and the breadth of reach can be attributed to the fairy-tale nature of this film. By introducing the character Abel as a troubled and weak youth, the film is able to trace his life's events under the spell of `Fate.' And indeed, Abel is sheltered and provided for throughout the course of events, even when faced with the most irrational of men. In film, characters are arguably always proponents of a few key traits, around which a believable person is constructed. In a fairy-tale, this is true to a greater extent. So of course, a combination of the two leads to a meeting of quite extreme characters. In The Ogre we are presented with a man who cares so much for children and animals that he is unable to see any evil in their presence. This oversight, or, in the heavy-handed symbolism of the film, blindness, is the basic motivation behind all events.
A great deal of the film is artfully done, with many subtle displacements to stimulate emotions in the viewer. Although the oft-mentioned 'front line' is never seen, instead we are faced with the massacre of hundreds of wild animals. The childhood friend of Abel returns to him in the form of the military official in the forest, and yet, Abel does not make a connection beyond a vague similarity. He is oblivious to the extravagant decadence of dipping one's hands in jewels, or keeping a wild cat for pleasure. In his simpleton's way he meanders through a landscape of potential knowledge, yet learns nothing. It is the viewer who is given the chance to learn what he can't. Unfortunately, this schema reminded me a bit too much of Forrest Gump. However, the film speaks a great deal to the fairy-tale effects of idealism and propaganda on young children, as finally Abel is cut off by the very boys he loved, their allegiance to a greater unseen force much stronger than their understanding of fellow man.
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