6.6/10
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Milchwald (2003)

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1:32 | Trailer
This is the story of Sylvia, who looses her stepchildren on a shopping trip in Poland. For fear of loosing her husband's love, too, she is unable to tell him what has happened and returns ... See full summary »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sophie Charlotte Conrad ...
Leo Bruckmann ...
Konstantin Mattis (as Leonard Bruckmann)
Judith Engel ...
Silvia Mattis
...
Josef Mattis
...
Kuba Lubinski
Gerd Beyer ...
Gerwin Schmid - 2. Kollege
Harald Richter ...
Thomas Gruber - 1. Kollege
Rudolf Csermely ...
Rainer Kollweck 'Prüfer' (as Dr. Rudolf Csermely)
Monika Pietsch ...
Lehrerin
Anne Langenickel ...
Valerie
Kathrin Schlenstedt ...
Mutter Weil
Paul Kaersten ...
Edgar Weil
Karl-Fred Müller ...
Polizeibeamter (as Karl Fred Müller)
Hanna Kochanska ...
Kubas Freundin
Anna Bojarska-Urbanski ...
Frau Dorota (as Anna Bojarska-Urbanska)
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Storyline

This is the story of Sylvia, who looses her stepchildren on a shopping trip in Poland. For fear of loosing her husband's love, too, she is unable to tell him what has happened and returns home, pretending anything is fine. When realising the missing of his children, the father starts a desperate retrieval. He is ready to give up anything in order to find them. Sylvia supports him in any way; she tries to comfort him and takes care of his hope's vulnerable flame. For the first time he really needs her. While the children are trying their best to get home, the police fails in detecting their whereabouts. When a very vague trace leads to Poland, the parents hit the road to find their children on their own. Written by Christoph Hochhäusler, Benjamin Heisenberg

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Release Date:

4 August 2004 (France)  »

Also Known As:

In This Very Moment  »

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User Reviews

contemporary version of classic fairy tale
21 February 2005 | by (Germany) – See all my reviews

This is a modern version of the Grimm fairy tale "Hansel and Gretel". It consists of two cross-cut story lines: one tells about the abandoned children's odyssey, the other shows the actions of father and stepmother. The latter unfortunately is rather weak: we see two people in their big, empty house, who can have sex with each other but are unable to communicate. The old cliché. Very lame. The other storyline is much better. It's definitely fun to watch the children's journey and how they torment the poor polish guy who tries to help them. Some scenes are really great, for example the ones around the bus station.

SPOILER AHEAD

Now let's talk about the "ending" of the film. Some would call it an "open ending", but truth is: there is no ending at all. The story lines are simply cut off. On the DVD there is an interesting interview where the director talks about his decision how the ending should look like. His explanations seemed quite nonsensical to me. I have to stress that when you watch this film with its cross-cut story lines of children and parents, it is natural that the thing you anticipate the most is the (catastrophic?) confrontation between the protagonists. If this confrontation doesn't take place, it must be disappointing. I still feel cheated by the author.

END OF SPOILER

"Milchwald" seems to be typical for a certain kind of German film: it's intelligent, focused, uncompromising and beautiful, yet seriously flawed. The problem is not that it moves slow. The problem is that it lacks sensuality. The conscious effort to keep it cool, keep it cold, is too obvious for my taste. Other people, however, may like this style. So if you have a weakness for German art cinema, go and watch it.

P.S.: I'd like to ask the author: what does the German title mean?? It sounds cool, but I don't see any connection with the film.


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