Short Sharp Shock (1998)
"Kurz und schmerzlos" (original title)

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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 3,268 users  
Reviews: 18 user | 17 critic

Three friends get caught in a life of major crime.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Adam Bousdoukos ...
Regula Grauwiller ...
Idil Üner ...
Ralph Herforth ...
Oscar Ortega Sánchez ...
Marc Hosemann ...
Cem Akin ...
Gabriels Bruder
Sükriye Dönmez ...
Seine Braut
Mustafa Enver Akin ...
Gabriels Vater
Hadiye Akin ...
Gabriels Mutter
Nezâ Selbuz ...
Tänzerin auf Hochzeit
Monique Akin ...
Junge Frau im Reisebüro (as Monique Obermüller)


Hamburg, Germany. The small crime scene. Three friends: Gabriel from Turkey and just out of prison, Costa from Greece and together with Gabriel's sister, Bobby from Serbia and together with her best friend. Bobby wants to get more into organized crime and decides to apply for a membership in an Albanian gang. As a test, he has to beat up someone who owes his future boss. He can join. Later, when Bobby has to do a weapon's deal on his own, he tries to get his friends in, too. But Gabriel does not want to go back into crime, he is dreaming of a life at the southern Turkish coast, owning a boat rental shop. Costa, always out of money, joins Bobby for one last time before getting good. But before the deal is on, both women start leaving their men for others. And when the deal is on, it goes terribly wrong. Written by Julian Reischl <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Thriller


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Release Date:

15 October 1998 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Short Sharp Shock  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Fatih Akin:  the drug dealer Nejo. See more »


As the camera tracks in to Bobby and Muhamer, the camera and its tracks are reflected on the front door of the car. See more »


References Scarface (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

"Mean Streets" in Hamburg-Altona
14 September 1999 | by (Langen, Germany) – See all my reviews

Why this movie was a failure at the German box-office will always be a mystery to me. Fatih Akin, the director, was obviously influenced by Martin Scorsese's and Brian DePalma's first movies but he didn't try to imitate them. Instead he made one of the first movies which truly celebrates the 'Multikulti'-society that Germany has become (At least in the larger cities).

You can't help but like the Turkish, Serbian and Greek protagonists albeit they are criminals. The characters are far too alive and three-dimensional to be seen as stereotypes/cliches thrown in to reinforce prejudices.

To me, KURZ UND SCHMERZLOS was the best German movie of 1998 (Even better than LOLA RENNT) and I recommend it to anyone who likes MEAN STREETS, Matthieu Kassovitz' LA HAINE or the films of Lars Becker. 9 out of 10.

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