Kati and Steffi are best friends since childhood. But as they step into adulthood, both their perfect friendship and their personalities get harshly tested by a series of unfortunate events... See full summary »
Kati and Steffi are best friends since childhood. But as they step into adulthood, both their perfect friendship and their personalities get harshly tested by a series of unfortunate events; mainly caused by Steffi finding out her father wasn't quite faithful to her mother, and the two girls getting hit by the consequences of her delirious revenge plans. When things get out of hand, the two girls find themselves in the middle of a mess, and Kati starts questioning whether or not Steffi is really so precious to her. Where will Steffi's plans of penalizing her father's "evil" lover will end up..? Will the girls' friendship be saved..? Written by
Germany's answer to 'Thirteen' poses many questions about teenage life. Amongst them the strength of friendship and loyalty, the longing for acceptance and stability and the desire to 'beat' rather than 'be beaten'. Where "Große Mädchen weinen nicht" is poles apart from it's teen-angst predocessors is in the acting, charecters particularly it's secondary players and use of narrative.
Kati and Steffi, the film's lead charecters aren't burdened with mass dysfuctionality or traumas, they are just two typical teens driven only by their on-going friendship. Things change however when Steffi witnesses her father with another woman. What becomes petty revenge, envelopes into tragedy beyond Steffi's comprehension and the loyal Kati having to decide whether she wants to play a part in it all. With Steffi in denial and Kati in guilt and the film's intergral 'revenge' story resolved almost halfway in, the remainder of the film (and it's real heart) is devoted to the complexities of teen-emotion. Steffi's cold controlling aloofness hides her painful insecurities and Kati's delicate need for love becomes secondary to her sense of right and wrong.
Maria Von Helland consciously mentions the girls sex-lifes, even potential drug-use but treats it matter-of-factly. She turns a seemingly complex tale into an entertaining strikingly simple one of teenage friendship. In her two leads, Anna Maria Mulhe and Karoline Herfurth, we have two remarkably gifted actreses, able to convey more with looks and well judged dialoge then scene stealing quirky performances. Josefine Domes and Jennifer Ulrich fare well also, conveying alot over limited screentime, as this is after all primarily about Steffi and Kati. Because of this, male and adult charecters suffer a little, but not in an obvious way and adding complex male personalities into the mix may just have leant the film's delicate balence towards moralising.
Both unique and not particularly European (the film's soundtrack consists of English sung pop), this is aguably every bit as strong as teen friendship classics like 'Stand By Me' and 'The Breakfast Club', more so for it's lack of sensationialism.
Incredibly watchable, instantly appreciated, this is a film to seek out, as well made gems like this on such a well-trod subject can only become few and far between....
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