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Inspired by a true story about a young German woman prepares to leave her war-ravaged city to begin a new life in America with her G.I. fiance. But standing between her and a hopeful future is a relentless police inspector, determined to prevent her from escaping her past. He pushes her to face the truth about a child, whose secret the woman has kept all this time. Before she can leave for her new life, she will be forced to confront the past she has been trying to leave behind. Written by
I'm not sure why my view is so different from other reviews but it is. I watched this movie from beginning to end in the hope that I can prevent as many people as possible from wasting their time doing the same. Originally Christina may have been a beautiful story. Unfortunately, the translation to film is in almost every regard poorly done. Perhaps with enough budget, a rewritten script and different actors it could be a good watch but the makers had none of these.
Set in Berlin after the end of WWII, it is a dark secret tale in the family of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" or "Sophie's Choice". This movie has none of their subtlety and though filmed on a single set like Woolf the claustrophobia doesn't enhance the story the way Mike Nichols' directing did. It just makes "Christina" claustrophobic.
The title character is unconvincing as someone who lived through the horror of Berlin at the end of the war. In Nicki Aycox's defense it is her lines more than anything that make her seem not tragic but ridiculous. We know there were "bombs everywhere" and that "they just kept falling" because she tells us six separate times. (And of course because most students of history knew that before they watched)
After the first half hour I wanted the GI boyfriend to either walk out or kick the German police officer out of the apartment. But instead he spends most of his time being dumbstruck. The police officer's motivation is never clear. He's investigating a crime but why, everything that happened in Berlin at the end of WWII this particular case is so important is never revealed.
But when Billy talks about his visit to the death camps I just wanted to smack everyone involved. In one statement the horror that was The Holocaust was belittled and used as a metaphor for an infinitely smaller and morally complicated event. The audacity of that one aspect of the film alone is enough to make this a Must (not) See film.
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