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The acting is good, held suitably in check, and the intercutting between various conversations quite advanced for the time. Unusually for the period, the film opens with an attractive theme song sung over the titles; the tune recurs from time to time as played by one of the inmates.
The films ends with a neat ironic twist to provide the unhappy ending. Bizarrely, the production company (UFA) shot a further scene (without reference to Siodmak) to go on the end, in which some of the minor characters meet a year later and describe a happy ending for the main characters, thus completely undermining the original ironic ending. (The NFT showed this after the film, with an explanatory subtitle.)
The main conflict arises when Hella finds out that her boyfriend wants to move out but hasn't told her anything about it. He then tells her that he got a job offer which would pay him enough money for them to be married. After this conflict is resolved, another emerges because of a misunderstanding and so on. This is more ore less how the movie plays out until it leads to a bittersweet ending.
Since this was the first sound film produced by the UFA, they had to experiment and used it at practically every instant they could, whether it was necessary or not. Because of this, the piano player, one of the few characters, felt shoe-horned in and didn't contributed anything to the film. This what the movie lacked in the first place: Developed characters, which is really a shame since the cast is small anyway and the whole film takes place in a confined space (one building) were most characters basically have to interact with each other.
The acting was fine for the most part, except for Aribert Mog, who played the main character Peter. His acting was atrocious in some scenes. Other weird decisions were the camera placement during a dialog between the couple, were the upper body of Peter completely covered Hellas face.
All in all it was a fine little movie with an interesting theme, nut also without it's flaws