In October 1989, the part of the West Berlin borough of Kreuzberg called SO 36, had been largely shut off by the Wall from the rest of the city for 28 years. A lethargic sub-culture of ... See full summary »
When his mother, who has sheltered him his entire 40 years, dies, Elling, a sensitive, would-be poet, is sent to live in a state institution. There he meets Kjell Bjarne, a gentle giant and... See full summary »
Per Christian Ellefsen,
Marit Pia Jacobsen
Marcus H. Rosenmüller's first feature movie deals with a boy thinking that he is responsible for his mother's death and his unusual way to fight his feelings of guilt. 11-year-old Sebastian... See full summary »
What To Do In Case of Fire? tells the humorous and touching story of six former creative anarchists who lived as house squatters in Berlin during its heyday in the 80s when Berlin was still... See full summary »
Thiss drama focuses on three very different brothers, all searching for happiness. Hans-Jörg is a sex addicted librarian, who is interested in young students. Werner is a successful ... See full summary »
In the sixties Romano Amato, his wife Rosa and their two sons Giancarlo and Gigi emigrate from Solino in Italy to Duisburg in the Ruhr area and establish the first Pizza restaurant in town.... See full summary »
Jan Nebel is young man who is fired from his job at the slaughterhouse after he beats up two civil-dressed cops at a street riot. Soon thereafter his father dies, and Jan moves to his apartment, sharing it with former co-worker Buddy and girlfriend Vera. Written by
As I'm a fan of contemporary German cinema (Becker, Tykwer, Wenders), I was thrilled to find a copy of this unknown work. The first 10 minutes sets up a fantastic premise (not your usual boy-meets-girl in a coffee shop), and the next 30 minutes draws us into the odd lives of 4 mysterious, unemployed dreamers who meet each other in equally strange ways. Sounds great, right? Add to this the creative style of Wolfgang Becker and Tom Tykwer, and how can it go wrong?
Well, I'm not sure how it went wrong, but it definitely did.
In a classic example of "good idea, no substance", this film begins to deflate around the halfway mark with no backbone to hold it up. The interesting lives we had been led to anticipate turn out to be rather commonplace. Dialogue is so sparse it's negligible. And the plot falls back to a series of boring clichés--the kinds which you can overhear in any bar at closing time if you're patient enough to listen. It reminds me very much of Wim Wenders' early unscripted work (Paris Texas) which begins famously but thins out into oblivion. Or maybe it's like a Lenny Kravitz song that starts with a cool guitar riff but goes nowhere but boredom.
I would recommend this film to fans of "mood" rather than "substance". If you are a fan of Godard, Bela Tarr, or movies where Ethan Hawke plays the lead (Reality Bites, Before Sunset), then you may enjoy this. However if you're a fan of Kieslowsky, Kubrick, Herzog or typically the filmmakers who pack a hidden message, I would suggest you pass on this one.
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