Run Lola Run (1998) Poster


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A breathtaking, action-packed love story...
kgx31115 January 2001
Run Lola Run is a riveting, heart (and pavement) pounding epic choose-your-own-adventure. Written and directed by Tom Tykwer, Run Lola Run is the story of a girl, Lola, who receives a panicked phone call from her longtime boyfriend, Manni. Manni owes a mobster 100,000 marks and doesn't know what to do. Lola, desperate to save his life, reassures him that she can get the money to him by noon, when he must meet the mobster (that means, she has twenty minutes), or else Manni would rob a grocery store. From that moment on, the movie takes us through three stories of Lola's trials trying to get Manni's money in 20 minutes - and with every person she comes into contact with, their lives take on completely different forms, as shown by 30-second photo flash montages. On an originality scale, this film ranks a ten. Franka Potente, the actress that portrays our flame-haired heroine, does an exceptional job. From the first frame the film plunges into action and adventure with breakneck speed, and we find ourselves cheering for Lola right to the end.
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Riveting action, dynamic sound track, and brilliant editing had me hooked from the first frame.
ecto-327 June 1999
The concepts are simple. How do our actions affect our own lives, as well as those whom we touch? What part do chance and random events play in determining an outcome? Can we select a different result by making different choices? In short, what is reality? Well, maybe it isn't all that simple, but while others have plowed these same fertile fields, as recently as the film "Go", and also in "The Music of Chance", based on Paul Auster's novel, no one has dealt with such cosmic existential questions with more brilliant originality, fast paced action, and a pulsing score than in this German cinematic masterpiece.

In a compact ninety minutes, combining snips of animation, cinema verité, quirky characters, situations and dialogue, and a pace that makes most music videos look like they've been filmed in slow motion, three versions of the same story sequence unfold, and each time conclude with a jolting finish that defies convention, and keeps the viewer guessing until the final frame.

This is one of those rare cinematic events that is entertaining, satisfying, and absorbing, as well as flawlessly acted, staged, edited, produced and directed. I thought that Lola ran her race with flair and style, and left all others way behind in the dust.
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Technically Stunning
nick_smart8514 April 2002
Tom Tykwer has truly proven himself as the filmmaker to watch. The little known German director has produced a modern-day masterpiece; a dazzling technical film about how life consists of the decisions we make.

Lola (Franka Potente) receives a phone call from her boyfriend, Manni. (Moritz Bleibtreii) Manni accidentally leaves a bag carrying $100 000 on a train, which is picked up by a homeless man. This leaves Manni in quite a predicament. He is supposed to deliver the money to a gangster by noon, if he fails, then he is likely to be killed. Lola has twenty- minutes to save his boyfriend. Twenty short minutes to somehow find the money and get it to him.

Run Lola Run is a film you expect to see at a Independent film festival, or in a Professor's office at a film school. In no way do I mean that in a negative way, I mean not to intend that the film is of a lower standard with lower production values, rather that the film is a beautifully mastered technical film that uses every filmmaking technique in the book. It is refreshing to see a film like this in the midst of the commercialised, dry-cut, 'traditional' filmmaking that we see on the silver screen so regularly.

As stated before, the film attempts to use a wide range of filmmaking techniques to help get the director's meaning and vision across to the audience. Some of these include speed-up, instant replay, black and white, and even animation in some parts.

It may sound strange, but the film is twenty-minutes long. Well, not really, but it is in context. Tykwer focuses on the twenty-minutes that Lola has, and shows that twenty-minutes three times over, each time with small differences will affect the outcome of the characters. The danger with this kind of technique is that it can threaten to be repetitive. However, the new additions added by Tykwer are very clever and link in perfectly, which will have you gasping for more.

Tykwer wrote and directed this film, and while doing this, he never lost sight of his meaning. His meaning that he is trying to express is that life consists of the decisions we make. While watching the film, this becomes increasingly evident. He also likes to emphasise that time is against Lola during the film. This can be seen when a young woman walks past and Lola asks her for the time, the next shot shows a much older woman answering her question, hence showing the importance of time.

Franka Potente gave a good performance as Lola. Yet, it is hard to say that she was fantastic, because it is a role that requires a great deal of physical acting and we didn't get to know a lot about Lola, hence the film wasn't overly-focusing on her issues, rather her boyfriend's problem. The real standout performance from my point of view came from Moritz Bleibtreii. He actually took on a quite challenging role and pulls it off successfully. He achieves his objective of getting the audience to feel sympathy for the position that he is in.

Run Lola Run is without a doubt, one of the best technical films ever made. A profound, exciting, new age masterpiece that has well and truly left its mark on the film industry.

Five out of Five.
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One of the best circular narratives!
emma5027 May 2003
Warning: Spoilers
This modern German film from 1999,that was so stunning and brilliantly edited won many awards at the Sundance Film Festival. The audience was taken away on this fast pace exhilarating ride which in turn warrants those watching to think about the circular narrative and its elements. All elements of the film including soundtrack and opening credits are incorporated into this them of a story being told through three different threads and three different experiences. The opening credits are displayed in cartoon form, as well as some of the traveling/running that Lola (Franka Potente) does through out the film. The soundtrack fills the film with a fast paced feeling and adds to the heart-pumping adrenalin rush that element of limited time creates. Fast camera angles, the use of panning, the incorporation of cartoons, the use of outdoor scenery ( no sound stage used), and close face shots are some of the main filming techniques used to make what I can only describe as an MTV video style of film making. The use of high speed camera shows areas of the plot that remains constant while the hi 8 camera is used in portions of the plot that changes in each of the 3 episodes. Also the use of red tinting shows a difference from real life and inside the characters thoughts. The audience is placed into the middle of the plot, there is no real introduction to the main characters, Lola and Manni, ( Moritz Bleibtreu) until after the main crisis of a loss of a bag filled of money that is suppose to be in the hands of a crook/ gangster with in the next 20 min from the time of the main character's conversation. This discussion is repeated 3 times until the characters successfully complete the task that lays before them. They either have to produce a replacement bag of money, or find the missing sack. In each of the 3 episodes the same characters are present as well as the same events but they either are incorporated or interact differently. For example, each episode has glass shattering. If the red ambulance does not crash through glass that is being carried across a main highway, then glass is broken by Lola screaming. Each episode also has elements of time, breaking of time, the different use of fire arm, running, and the use of the same script by the characters. The episodes are broken apart by either Manni or Lola dying, and in these deaths the audience is brought into the head of the characters to where they talk of love, life, death and loss. The audience is shown a place where the characters have a choice, which in turn is how they can relive the same morning events. This allows the audience to discover new interactions amongst the characters, discover new pieces of each story and how fit into one overall tapestry of a day in the characters lives. This film grabs the audience from the very beginning and proceeds to take them on an intense ride filled with lows and highs. One that can be watched over and over again due to the lack of information or images that is constantly being discovered. The complex and layered tale that unfolds in Run Lola Run is amazingly and almost unbelievably made better through the editing, film footage style, and soundtrack. The unusually dramatic images and different style than other films of the latter 90's sets Run Lola Run in a class of it's own
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The Story lies in the Details
totot5714 June 2006
I have seen the movie several times, and each time I find new details and nuances that add to the story and the movies as an audiovisual delight. Friends of mine introduced me to the sound track at first on a high quality stereo system. It was amazing. I went home and ordered the CD. I am no great fan of techno music but that first track made me hold my breath because of its beauty. It felt like sitting in a cathedral and listening to a simple choral. I know, awkward comparison, but...

A few observations of my own.

Lola's first "run" reveals that her father believes she is not his biological daughter, calls her a "cuckoos egg". And it's quite possible, since we see her mom in all 3 "runs" talking on the phone with someone other than her husband. Lola is devastated. All three "runs" feature the bank security guard, trying to calm down Lola, giving her support. Every time they have intense eye contact, some silent understanding. He once even greets her with "Da bist du ja, Liebling" ("there you are, darling"). Quite strange for a bank employee to call his boss' daughter that, don't you think? We also see early on that he might have a heart condition.

In the last story segment, we see the guard again, in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Lola caught a ride, for a change, to her meeting destination with Manni. Miraculously, the guard's heart condition improves as his hand reaches toward Lola's. The medic, at first annoyed ("what the heck are you doing here?") is puzzled. Lola's answer to his question, as she reaches for the guard's hand is: "Ich gehoer zu ihm." Very important, I think. Call me silly, but somehow I have this feeling that he might be her illegitimate father. As bank employee he might well have had contact with Lola's mother, and even time to have an affair with her, considering the workaholic dad being gone so much.

"Ich gehoer zu ihm" is badly translated in the subtitles as "I'll stay with him" while the German would better translate into "I belong to him." And that is something Lola could well have realized after her dad abandoned her with the accusation of being a cuckoo's egg.

The guard is also in the beginning of the movie quoting famous soccer coach Sepp Herberger's "the ball is round". It's in the league with Yogi Berra's famous word creations. The ball is round meant for Herberger, that anything can happen as long as the game is on. Expect the unexpected. Since this is a movie that wants the viewer to "think" about possibilities, why not go all the way?
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Modern Masterpiece
ganstertrippin12 January 2002
Run Lola Run. What a cool title.

It tells the tale of a young man, Manni, who one day was doing a job for crime boss. The job was just to deliver a bag of money to him with 100000 DM which roughly translates to $20000 or $25000 US. Unfortunatly Manni leaves the money on a train and is totally screwed unless he can get the money back in 20 minutes. So he calls his girlfriend, Lola (and no, she is not the girl from The Fifth Element), for help. From here the film follows Lola choosing three paths, each going for 20 minutes, to getting the money for Manni.

Run Lola Run is a wonderful study of how life consists of the paths we take. Some say there is no right and wrong paths to take in life, but Run Lola Run seems to illustrate that the right path is the best. Franka Potente (Lola) does a wonderful job and must have lost about 10 pounds for all the running she does in this film. But the real star here is Tom Tykwer (the director), who vison for this film is so fantastic and cool.

In terms of coolness, this has to be one of the coolest movies ever made. It contains black and white camera, animation, three or four different types of slow motion, fast motion and the most amazing still shots taken for a film which is enough to keep anyone interested. Plus this film is only 80 minutes long, but luckily it feels about 20 minutes longer than that.

After being one of the most talked about films of 1998, I would safely say that Run Lola Run has inspired a large number of film makers. Run Lola Run is a modern masterpiece and should pave the way for the future of films.
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See Lola run
jotix10013 July 2005
Tom Tykwer's clever "Run Lola Run" showed up on cable the other day. We had seen it when it first came out, and frankly, watching it for a second time, it seemed even better than the last time. Mr Tykwer made an excellent impression with this film, which introduced us to this talented director. Having seen "Heaven", and "True", "Lola rennt" is by far a superior effort from Mr. Tykwer.

The premise of the film is a clever one. Lola, in twenty minutes, must solve the mystery in which she is drawn into. At each of this situations, Lola shows great resources about how to help her petty criminal boyfriend, who has lost 100,000 DM, and now must account for the missing money.

Franka Potente is the main reason why this movie works the way it does. She is almost like the cartoon character one sees in the opening credits. Lola, is larger than life, and shows she can do anything she wants because of her resolve. Ms. Potente brings freshness to the role and she totally captivates the viewer in her no-nonsense approach to life, in general. The supporting cast does good work under Mr. Tykwer's direction.

It's a puzzle why Hollywood hasn't made an attempt to remake this film, since the Americans are obsessed with redoing material like "Run Lola Run". Let's hope they don't try!
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Right place at the wrong time or wrong place at the right time?
chemingineer27 February 2001
Warning: Spoilers
The film has an unusual format in that it presents three versions of a twenty-minute episode. But unlike Kurosawa's RASHOMON these are not different perspectives of the same incident by different eyes. Instead it offers 'It could have been this way, but for…. or if only…' scenarios. The film thus attempts to define what people loosely refer to as the luck factor. Luck, the film tries to say is being at the right place at the right time or even the wrong place at the wrong time. Or it could be the right place at the wrong time, or is it the wrong place at the right time. It is this clever scripting around the space-time permutation, that makes this film such a delight to watch. The scenario, in which the young lovers emerge triumphant and richer, makes out a strong case for being proactive and for taking risk. It is also amusing to see how wrong conclusions can be drawn from partial information. But the film offers more than an interesting case study for management students. Cinema buffs would notice that time compression, which is so common in film idiom is not resorted to…. the action is nearly in true time. The quicksilver editing and the pulsating background score embellish Lola's running and make sure that the repetitions do not get jarring. The film is an unalloyed delight to the mind and the senses.
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Best German suspense and action film ever made
Olwe17 August 1998
'Lola rennt' by Tom Twyker is the final step for German film-making towards a professionality and technical perfection that used to be Hollywood's alone.

80 mins. of brilliantly shot action will keep the viewer enthralled with the love story of Manni and Lola who have to fight against time: 20 mins. to be exact. It is 11.40 a.m. and Manni who is into smuggling diamonds across Eastern European borders has to turn over 100.000 DM at 12 o'clock sharp to Ronni, a 'gangster' par excellence, who would kill anyone for stealing a bottle of beer from him.

Unfortunately, Manni forgot the money in the tram and is now more desperate than ever. He calls the one person who has always taken care of him: the love of his life, Lola. She asks Manni to wait for her as he is going to rob the 100.000 DM from one the shops in town as he knows that turning up at Ronni's without the money would be his immediate death. Lola starts running immediately thinking of a million different ways how to help the man who is the most important person in her life and she runs and runs.....

The quality of cuts and camera shots, innovative techniques at the top of modern filming practically unknown to German viewers up to now will hopefully make 'Lola rennt' a blockbuster in the cinemas as it fully deserves it.

Like 'Der Himmel über Berlin' (City of Angels', Ryan, Cage') and 'Bandits' this film is surely to be copied by Hollywood. A symbol of the emerging new strength and innovative qualities of German film-making. You HAVE to see it :))

The world-premier screening on 15th August, Cologne, Germany at the chocolate-museum Open-Air-Cinema had a 1,000-strong audience screaming and laughing, breaking into applause on several scenes as the story unfolded. The director and the actors and actresses were present and will have been delighted by the spontaneous reactions of the audience proving this film to be one modern masterpiece of film-making.
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Lola Rennt
nutsa26 February 2003
Lola rennt or Run Lola Run as we say it, is a German thriller written and directed by Tom Tykwer. This Film will contrast your emotions as it shows you how one little event in somebody's life can change there's, and other peoples lives forever. This rollercoaster ride of emotions will keep you gripped all the way through as it jumps from soft, dimly lit emotional scenes, to the completely contrasting scenes of running and constant action.

The music used in this film complements the scenes very well, when it's a slow scene our ears are graced with soft classical music like when Lola is falling to the ground in a slow motion shot. The complete opposite of this is used in the fast paced running scenes, as we get pounded by constant techno beats. I believe that the director has used techno to try and get us inside Lola's head as she is running and stressing about Manni and all the other events that happen throughout this amazing film.

Lola's Determination to save her boyfriend Manni is very well projected as she enters the bank that her father runs, and throughout the three different versions of the story uses different techniques to try and save him. This involvement with the characters and the three different storylines is very unique to this style of film. I think that the actors have delivered a very memorable and exciting performance which will leave viewers wanting to watch the film over and over again.

I think that this director has used this style of film very well, he is one of this first to successfully use this style and create a very interesting and exciting film. This film is almost the only one of its kind, other than the film 'Sliding Doors' but even in that the character is living two parallel lives but in this film it is replayed over again.

This film used interesting techniques that I had never seen in a film before. I think that the snapshots into the peoples lives gave you a good view of how one little event can change your life forever. By replaying through the same sort of events three times the director lets you really get a sense of feeling for the characters, especially Lola and as the film progresses you actually start to care about the characters and I think this was a really good quality in the film.

Overall I really enjoyed this film, and think that it is one of the best foreign films I have seen in a long time, and would give it a 9/10.
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best german film to date
thomas_altmann11 October 2001
"Lola Rennt" is probably the best german film to date! I've seen it a couple of times now and each time it is as fascinating as it was when I first saw it on the big screen.

The most stunning thing about this movie is the fast pace that is maintained through all aspects of the film: the sound, the music, the camera perspectives, the editing, etc. Plus Franka Potente does an excellent job to underline this effect.

But to be honest: "Lola Rennt" is no film for the casual moviegoer who just wants to see another mainstream movie as we so often see it in Hollywood movies. It is in nearly every aspect different from the average movie and has a lot of stylistic (animated sequences, split-screen, etc) and narrative twists that you won't see in most films today.

Score: 10 out of 10
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An exhilarating, upbeat journey
marissas7528 February 2006
"Run Lola Run" is one of the most fun, involving, stylish movies I've seen in a long time. The suspense is high from the get-go, with Lola's boyfriend Manni phoning her to say that if he doesn't get 100,000 deutsche marks within 20 minutes, a gangster will kill him. Immediately, Lola sets off running through Berlin in a frantic attempt to locate the money. The fun part is that we see Lola's journey three times with three very different outcomes, determined by little things that happen to Lola as she runs.

Lola (the engaging Franka Potente) manages to be both an iconic, super-cool heroine, and a believable young woman who just wants to get her boyfriend out of trouble. IMDb ratings show that this is the rare action movie that appeals to girls more than to guys, probably because Lola is such a strong character.

This is exhilarating film-making, with a propulsive soundtrack, a fast pace, and many flashy effects like animated and black-and-white sequences--in addition to the most stunning use of split-screen that I've ever seen. Incredibly for such a young director, these techniques are employed with great assurance. I also like how although the film is "hip" and sometimes amused by the crazy things that happen to people, it's never cynical. Instead, there's a sweet optimism to it, a faith in karma and love.

Occasionally, "Run Lola Run" is a bit too clever for its own good. The rapid-fire montages that show the fates of minor characters are superficially amusing, but unnecessarily hammer home the theme that "little things can have a huge effect on a person's life." However, the movie's philosophies are still ambiguous enough that there's a lot to think about when it's over. Furthermore, "Run Lola Run" is an extraordinarily good time; it's impossible to take your eyes off the screen whenever Lola's on it.
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Innovative Film That''s Always Fun To Watch
ccthemovieman-125 February 2006
This is one of the more inventive movies of the last decade, I would think. It was new, fresh and very different when it came out in the late '90s and still is unique and enjoyable as of this review in early 2006.

It's short - 81 minutes - but plenty long when you consider it's three versions of the same story, each version about 25 minutes after an opening introduction.

That may sound too repetitive or boring for those who haven't seen this, but it is anything but overplayed thanks to the innovative camera-work and interesting angles on the same story. Watching it on DVD was better than the theater because the 5.1 sound is superior, plus you have the option of a good dubbed version or the original German with English subtitles. I use either, depending on my mood but I lean toward the German with subtitles.

Franke Potente, who has since gone on to become better known around the world from the "Bourne" films, is the centerpiece of this film and very, very interesting. The looks of shock on her face, her flaming red hair and wild general appearance and the crazy things that happen to her are always fun to watch and hear.

Added to the unique cinematography, which includes tricks here and there, is a pulsating electronic soundtrack that brings added life to this already kinetic, involving film.

The high rating I give this film could really be summed up in two words: DIFFERENT and FUN.
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Fun to watch, but I'd hardly rate it a classic.
kergillian22 May 2001
People seem to get to easily impressed by films these days. No, I'm not a grouch, and I did like this film. Quite a bit actually, even though I'd basically seen the same film a few years ago: D.A.N.G.A.N. Runner, an HK film, predates Lola and is quite similar for the running throughout the film to live/save life etcetera aspect. Not to mention films like Flirt which deal with the same roles in different situations or Sliding Doors with the 'what if...?' aspect.

So this film, though interesting, was hardly new. It takes ideas already seen and twists them just a little bit. But it lacks the characterization and plot that made those other films so interesting. We learn very little about Lola, just a few snippets from her encounters with her 'father' and the bed sequences with her boyfriend, who we learn even less about. And the plot is all about cinematography and film style, there's little essence to it. In other words, it's eye candy and little more.

What that means is that we see great colour with little flavour. Experimentation with technique and style, sometimes it works other times it gets quite sloppy, and not enough attention to fine detail or story. (the cartoon part is cool though). And I would have liked a less Hollywood ending from a film that tries so hard to be contemporary and non-Hollywood.

Overall: Fun to watch. Some of the experimentation really worked. It's hardly a classic though, not even a terribly solid film. But it's interesting, and doesn't drag *too* much. I almost gave it a 6 but relented and instead give it a 7/10.
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Invigoratingly bleak (possible spoiler)
alice liddell19 January 2000
Warning: Spoilers
In his last feature, WINTERSLEEPERS, Tom Twyker constantly undermined the ostensible romantic tragi-comedy with grand Teutonic intimations of controlling Fate and Nature. Twyker laudably abandons any notions of naturalism, realism, plausibility, drama or character here in a film which raises formal gamesmanship to a remarkably populist level. I bet Hal Hartley's kicking himself.

Everything a mainstream movie is supposed to have is denied here - linear plot, resolution, character motivation etc. The film's flagrant artifice is not just signalled formally, we're told so, by a couple of gloriously pretentious epigraphs, and by one of the characters himself, who blows the whistle and kicks the ball to start. At no point does Twyker indulge in illusionism - the film is a textbook in Brechtian alienation: cartoons; jump cuts; the idea that every plot we see is just the TV programme Lola's mother watches; implausible situations, coincidences, chance; elastic time etc. There can be no tension and drama because we know the director has stacked everything against us and Lola, and can pull any rabbit he likes out of the hat and does (which makes a mockery of those critic who see the film as dramatising the freedom of computer games or DVD).

And yet we ARE thrilled with the drama and tension. Because cinema has never been about character in the novelistic sense. Syd Field may be discredited now, but he was right about one thing: action is character. We don't need to know anything about Lola's backstory - the geometric fact that she has a goal is enough. We positively beg Twyker to wipe out the last story as a mistake, and begin again. It is cinema's urge towards denying death, because death=inaction=The End. And still Twyker even denies us this - death IS the film's motor, it causes it to keep going; success and reconciliation lead to inertia, alienation and finish.

So what does it all mean? Without in any way overestimating Twyker's artistic worth, LOLA bears many similarities to the works of Vladimir Nabokov, with its playfully sadistic master of ceremonies (author/director) constructing an elaborate labyrinth, letting his hapless creation loose in it. There is something cruelly godlike in this, and the film's dilemmas ARE existential. Twyker mocks Lola throughout, constantly emphasising the circularity of her quest; fast-forwarding and affirming others' futures while she is trapped so lethally in the present, her future oppressively to be created by her.

The inverting of life and death, however, are only possible through art, and this is where the film's melancholy lies. Twyker has justifiably lost faith in cinema as a medium of observing, revealing and experiencing reality. Nabokov can take his traumatised professor in 'Bend Sinister', and give him the saving grace of madness - those actually living in Russia weren't so fortunate. We usually only get one choice, and we're stuck with the one we make. In this light, the film does work on an emotional level. Despite the variations on Lola's plot, things remian desperately similar in its context. Are we really that important, or, like Mannie, do we fear we'll be forgotten as soon as we're dead. This isn't IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE, where one life is inseperably bound up with the happiness of others.

There is progress. It may be misogyistic of the film to suggest that all Lola's seeming mobility is useless, that it's only when Mannie takes control that danger can be averted. The other viewpoint is thast Lola working on her own resulted in despair and death, but once Mannie starts doing his bit, and the two work in tandem, that resolution becomes a possibility. Isn't Mannie's flip relief at the end of the third story so brilliant, so true?

Each story, for all their technical inhumanity, has masterpiece flashes of human comedy, largely focusing of Lola's gleefully unpleasant dad. This is the ultimate film of late urban capitalism, where mobility is a Maxwell's Demon overloading in information, yet hurtling towards inertia, where a life is worth as little as a craps risk and a clock. While critical comparisons with Godard and Fassbinder only reveal how standards have declined in arthouse cinema; and the danger of monotony isn't always averted, the surprise of LOLA is that a film so light and polayful, so impatient with angst and death, should have been made by a German.
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Unbearably exciting – handles flair and fury better than any film
Flagrant-Baronessa20 September 2006
On his way to the drop-off, Lola's boyfriend Manni loses a bag containing 100,000 marks, belonging to the local gang, on the subway. Desperate and exasperated he calls up his girlfriend from a phonebooth and she is determined to help him – and now Lola has 20 minutes to run, find the money, and deliver them to Manni before he robs the convenience store.

There are precious few films to which I award the perfect 10/10 – and "Lola Rennt" (1998) is one of them. I think German director Tykwer has done something really cool here to fit our fast-paced generation; he has tailored the perfect adrenaline-pumping ride, filled it with interesting characters, philosophical notions and overdoses of flair and fury. Sure, it's mostly style when you think about it, but it fits the concept – it's simple and totally brilliant. The film has Lola (an energetic Franka Potente) run across the city, bumping into strangers, falling prey to detours and diversions – such as the typical huge sheet of glass plate carried by construction workers, the group of nuns, the woman with a baby carriage – but always keeping her focus on the task at hand. She loves Manny, and she WILL help him. This way, Lola is an extremely likable heroine.

So does she succeed? Well, the film reaches its culmination alright – three times. As Lola makes her way to Manni for the first time, it pauses, interjects a meaningful flashback, rewinds and starts all over again, zooming back to when Lola received the call from Manni. Each time her journey is different from the last, fantastically navigating the "what ifs" and "should have, could have, would haves" of the situation. Sometimes her journey is subtly different – the smallest thing, the butterfly effect, giving rise to some changes in pace and sometimes it brings about a new scenario altogether. This part is so exquisitely well-crafted that if you study the background elements you will find differing details such as the position of the train in relation to Lola in the beginning, the careful timing of vehicles and the fated movements of the people she encounters – it's a meticulous piece of film-making.

For all its subtlety in craft and setting, Lola Rennt is first and foremost a very vibrant and alive film – and dare I say – very in-your-face. I really can't stress this enough. This vibrancy manifests itself in the hectic adrenaline-boosting pace of the run, the vivid colourizations, Franka Potente's flaming red hair and high-pitched screams and the fast-beating techno music that plays furiously in the background. It is so fast and alive in fact, that once a pause is inserted it becomes both poignant and welcomed, giving depth to the story by exploring Lola and Manni's love (in the flashback between the journeys).

Aside from the cartoon device (in which the live-action cuts to a poorly-sketched cartoon figure of Lola) which I felt was redundant in an already interesting film, Lola Rennt really is a lesson in style (that Tony Scott could benefit from taking, by the way). Tykwer goes all the way here – especially for the third journey which is more aggressive and determined, and the result is something glorious that easily makes my top 20 films list.

10 out of 10
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An adrenaline-soaked celluloid drug
hwr115 February 2000
Rarely has a movie made me concurrently gasp in disbelief and drunk with joy. To merely say I enjoyed "Run Lola Run", would do a great disservice to how I truly feel about this masterpiece. It's exhaustive frentic energy was so addictive that I didn't want it to end. The synergistic combination of sound and image perfectly mesh to create a state of uneasiness which was thoroughly enjoyable. "Run Lola Run" is a drug I wouldn't mind being addicted to.
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A weird and wonderful melange of cinematic techniques to create a timeless bubble.
sweetnsauicy20015 October 2004
Lola Rennt is definitely in my top ten favourites. Anyone and everyone in the 21st Century can relate to at least one element of this film. Whether it be in from the family relationship perspective e.g. alienated someway by your parents, the feeling of being shut out, or the feeling of wanting hold onto someone so desperately that you'll do anything for them in order to try and stay with them. But surely the most common theme throughout this film is the essence of TIME. How TIME controls everything and no matter what the normal human being does, we cannot stop it, alter it, or change its course. Time has a knock on effect on the series of events that follow. Ever missed a bus on the way to work, thus you were late for work, imagine the most extreme circumstances and that you were fired for being late, and you were late because you missed the bus and the thought that comes into your head…' If only...' And this chain reaction is exactly what Tykwer is trying to defy. Time. Time and fate. By the end of the film Lola is in control of her own fate. Each time she meets someone on her journey she changes his or her fate.

A weird and wonderful twist of make-belief through use of a fantastic melange of cinematic techniques, like a timeless bubble. Is it a music video, a computer game, or a 'groundhog' type film? It's all free for interpretation. Tykwer put a lot of thought into the use of medium to keep the audiences attention, to convince them that this is a mixture of make-belief and reality. Shown through the use of cartoons verse hand held camera, photographic evidences verses red scenes (reflection time). Possibly we believe by the end of the film…if Lola can change time, change a sequence of events, can we?

This is a film that I never tire from. Each time I watch it I notice something that I didn't see the first time. The concept of time, its power and our destiny grows stronger, spinning round and round in my head.

Tick-tock, tick-tock.
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Movie that started the wave
perica-4315120 July 2018
This highly watchable, original and amusing German movie started a renewed interest in German cinema worldwide, and was followed by a number of gems. In itself, it has made a lot of contributions to movie storytelling, and its commercial and critical success is spot on.
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Ran to a good destination
springsunnywinter28 March 2007
Warning: Spoilers
This is the only German film I ever seen cause I don't know German so I bought it on DVD with English Dubbing and it was so Ultra cool and her red hair is definitely a trademark of the movie. The film was 80 minutes and I enjoyed every second of it. Franka Potente's first film I've seen was The Bourne Identity, second: The Bourne Supremacy and the third was Creep. So I looked forward to Run Lola Run and the three main things that made me inspired to the film was:

1: That the film has been rated #164 of the top 250 IMDb movies & got 25 awards.

2. Franka Potente plays Lola & she is one of my favourite actresses.

3. One of The Simpson's episodes that I have seen before Run Lola Run is inspired from the film its called Trilogy of Error but it's slightly different it has three stories told one after the other all happening at the same time.

**SPOILERS START HERE** While I was watching the movie it was a bit confusing when the whole story was repeated for the second time and then the third in all different ways & the question was that which is the real ending? But I managed to understand that the fate changes by the choices you make. In the first two perspectives of the story they both realised that if one of them died then they will know how much they love each other but in the third one was successful Manni got the money from the tramp and Lola got money without committing a crime so Manni got away from his boss plus Lola has the money to herself but she did not seem happy and Manni attention was on the money. So basically it's like a video game if you fail you try again. **END OF SPOILERS**

The only complain is that Lola is too good for Manni that guy looks like a shaved goofy monkey. Otherwise this film is a perfect thriller and I gave it a perfect 10/10 because it deserves it.
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Quite a movie
blanche-228 January 2012
Run, Lola, Run is a 1998 film from Germany which stars Franke Potente and Mauritz Bleibtreu (which in German means "stay true") as boyfriend and girlfriend in a desperate quest to replace 20,000 Deutschemarks within twenty minutes.

The film begins with some universal questions -- who am I, etc., and then gets into the story. Manni (Bleibtreu) frantically calls Lola (Potente), who has the wildest color red hair in history. She was supposed to pick him up but didn't arrive in time. Because of that, Manni had to take the subway and lost the 20,000 marks he picked up to bring to a mobster. He has twenty minutes to replace it or it's curtains. If Lola can't help him, he's going to rob a nearby grocery store.

Lola starts running. On the way, she stops at the bank where her father works. She finds her father with another woman, who has just told her father that she is pregnant. Dad tells Lola that he's not coming home ever again, and he doesn't give her any money. Lola keeps running.

Director/writer Tom Tykwer has taken up the question -- is our fate always the same, despite the decisions we make? Or do the decisions we make shape what happens to us? How much is fate, how much can we control? The film goes on to show three twenty-minute sequences of Lola running and, depending upon what she decides to do, depending on whether her timing is just right or a little off to reach Manni, different things happen that decide the ending. The sequences are done in real time, not compressed as many films are.

Underneath Lola's running is this amazing rhythmic beat written by Tykwer and two others - "Running One," "Running Two," and "Running Three." It is fabulous.

This is an exciting, suspenseful, compelling film, one of the best ever. Potente doesn't get to do much but run. The poor woman could not wash her hair for seven weeks of filming because if she did, the insane color would fade. A wig might have been a good investment. Bleibtreu has the emotional role, and he's excellent. Both of them have the youthful energy necessary for such a thrilling movie.

See it! It's great. And that rhythm is hypnotic.
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A one-off exercise in style that will remain forever unique
harry_tk_yung15 July 2007
Warning: Spoilers
It's been almost 10 years now but the novelty of "Run Lola run" has not worn off. Or would it ever? In retrospect, remember how long ago were these other "novel" movies made – Memento (2000), Sixth sense (1999), Pulp fiction (1994) and, never forget, Citizen Kane (1941)! We have seen groundbreaking techniques and concepts in them employed by subsequent movies and, looking back, the novelty is gradually eroded. But not "Run Lola run", it seems.

The unique thing about RLR is its total dedication to style, style and more style. It has often been criticize as having all style but no substance. But that's precisely the point: substance is not the point. Taken separately, the avant-garde things in this movie - alternate life-lines, injection of animation, black humour, split screens, frequent crane shots and other elaborated camera deployment (including two soft-focus interludes that are reminiscent of master auteur Kieslowski) – do not seem particularly appealing anymore. But the way all these have been put together, with such energy and gusto, has never been seen in any other movie, or is likely ever to. Tom Tykwer himself has gone on to take up other projects, including making the first of the trilogy in Kieslowski's legacy, "Heaven" (2002). (The second one in the trilogy, "Hell", was made by someone else - Danis Tanovic who won an Oscar with "No man's land").

As to RLR, at the end of the day, watching Franka Potente run (against the exciting, pulsating background music) alone is worth the price – it is the among most beautiful visual images that ever graces any silver screen.
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Captivating...(Scream, Lola, scream!!!)
sirguitarist30 July 2005
Warning: Spoilers
As one of only 3 movies I have "bothered" to sit through with subtitles (I viewed the German language version with English subtitles - I'm glad I didn't even know of the English overdubbed version) this movie drew me right in from the beginning and never let go.

Though I doubt anyone will plow through the other 500+ reviews to get to mine, I still wish to express my love for this movie and submit it to the infinite void of cyberspace.


Besides the multiple medias (B&W, animation, hand-held cameras, etc.) that made it visually appealing, what I liked was the message. In "Sliding Doors" like fashion (btw, interestingly, these 2 films were made the same year) we get to see 3 (as opposed to 2 in 'SD') scenarios, each beginning as Lola has hung up with her boyfriend, Manni, who has lost 100,000 marks and is facing certain death from those it belongs to, and is pleading with Lola for help. Since I imagine the whole story has been given away in other reviews, I'll just get to the moral of the story.

In the first scenario, Manni makes a poor decision and Lola pays for it with her life. In the second, Lola is the one making the bad choice and Manni pays for it with his. In the final scenario, and what we are led to believe is what actually happened, (at least that's my take on it) Lola runs out of options and even prays for divine intervention. Good fortune comes to both Manni and Lola, Manni is able to deliver the lost funds, and they both end up better off than before. The message of the blessings that follow when people make the right choices was loud and clear. Easily one of the best movies I've ever seen.

My only complaint was that it was too short! (roughly 80 minutes) I give this movie 10/10 and my highest recommendation.
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Kuler24 August 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I'll admit it, I played "Run Lola Run" right through to the very end of the closing credits. I'll explain why later.

The film begins with a philosophical question: "How do we know what we think we know? Why do we believe anything at all?" It immediately states an answer: "The ball is round, the game is 90 minutes. That's a fact, everything else is pure theory." In other words, "no reason."

Lola's boyfriend, Manni, lost 100,000 marks belonging to his hoodlum associates. Lola needs to get that amount of money and meet him in 20 minutes, or they'll surely kill him. So she hurries to get there. Along the way, she runs into various people; the film shows flashes of what will happen to them in their future without explanation of how or why.

But things go very badly for her. She is killed, so the events start over, showing a different version. This time, things happen a bit differently, including different outcomes for the people she encounters. Again things turn out wrong, again it starts over, again different results, this time with success for Lola and Manni. There's no reason for it, no different choices anyone made; it's just random. In fact, she turns 100 marks into over 100 thousand in two rounds of roulette at a casino (as if that ever happens when you need it).

The movie is filled with unlikable characters. Manni is a crook, apparently a thief and smuggler. Lola joins him in armed robbery of a grocery in one iteration, then robs her father's bank, holding her father at gunpoint, in another. In the third iteration where things work out, the two behave better, not because they're better people making better choices, but because they simply never had the opportunity to rob anyone.

In between the iterations, Manni and Lola are lying in bed, discussing things that have nothing to do with anything, further underscoring the fact that this is a pointless, meaningless, random, plodding movie, which is philosophically corrupt and only barely entertaining. But the music rocks, which is why I listened to the very end: I didn't want to miss the only thing good about this film.
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A Rocket Paced Thriller
gordonl565 August 2016
Warning: Spoilers

Not sure how to describe this 1998 German production. Best to call it a real non-stop thrill ride about a pair of losers. Franka Potente and Moritz Bleibtreu are the said losers. Bleibtreu is a low end dealer who is doing a 100,000 Mark cash pick-up for his boss. Of course he loses the cash and is sure that his crazy boss is going to kill him.

He gets on the phone and calls his girl, Potente about the screw-up. Now starts a series of events as Potente tries to round up the cash in just 20 minutes. Out the door she charges and starts running here and there in order to save her boyfriend's life.

The film moves at breakneck speed as Potente tries to hit up her banker father for some cash. This does not work so it is back on the street as Potente races to her man's side. The deal here is that the boyfriend intents to rob a nearby market if Potente cannot gather the cash.

The whole story starts over again when the first "run" is not a success. This one plays out slightly different but is likewise not a success. The third "run" is again different, but this time there is a happy ending for Potente and Bleibtreu.

This one is a film that really needs to be seen. It is damn near impossible to explain the story and do it justice. At only 81 minutes it rocket's along with top flight cinematography and a pounding soundtrack. It is well worth the time investment.

I was lucky enough to see it on the big screen and was floored by the whole production. The audience all clapped and cheered at the end.
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