It's summer. One endless, sexy party under the open sky. Tina and her friends are living the dream of a whole generation of decadent Berlin-party-kids. But after one excessive night she's haunted by a mysterious ugly creature in nightmares she has. The only person she talks about her fears to is her psychologist. His advice is to confront her fears and to reach out to the creature. At first Tina refuses but after she hears about her parents' plans to put her in a mental hospital she starts talking to the creature. She slowly realizes that the creature is an incarnation of her fears and that it has the same feelings she does. Afraid of being called a freak she starts hiding the creature in her room. After a while she even gets close to it. It's almost like a relationship with a wild stray animal. For the first time in her life, it almost seems as if Tina has the courage to be herself. But then her parents and her friends see the creature... Written by
Der Nachtmahr is a unique and highly innovative genre film made in Germany. What starts out as a potential horror movie quickly turns into a very original piece of art featuring elements of different genres. It's like Donnie Darko and Black Swan were fused together to create something completely new.
Tina (superbly portrayed by young German actress Carolyn Genzkow) is 17. All she is interested in are rave parties, drugs and a guy named Adam. One night she spots this strange little creature in the bushes that looks like ET's ugly brother (and ET wasn't a beauty himself). Tina seems to be the only one who is able to see that being that becomes an important part of her life...
At the beginning of the film there are two warnings (which tell the audience to beware of both light and sound of the following movie) and a request that this movie should be experienced with high volume nonetheless. At that point I personally thought that these warnings were kind of empty and inserted to generate a dramatic feeling before the actual movie started And boy, was I wrong. These dance scenes are extremely intense and unique, that's all I will tell you about that, go and experience it yourself!
What stands out to me about the cinematographic approach of Der Nachtmahr is this melange of the typical German movie style which features extreme pragmatic and realistic dialogues and characters (90 % of German movies are made that way and most of them suck in my opinion) and these fantasy scenes where the Nachtmahr appears and disappears miraculously. These kind of opposite movie styles fuse throughout the film and there are several scenes where you start wondering what is going on, is it reality or some kind of dream sequence? It's not just that this film doesn't give clear answers to the questions you might have, it constantly tries to lure you in wrong directions
Der Nachtmahr is a splendid film with unique style and an extraordinary approach. You cannot watch it, you have to experience it.
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