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Night Shapes (1999)

Nachtgestalten (original title)
The Pope is in town and the night of his visit is anything but heavenly for some of Berlin's inhabitants. The down-and-out, the rich and the poor, the polizei, the street kids and taxi ... See full summary »


Andreas Dresen


Andreas Dresen
7 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Myriam Abbas Myriam Abbas ... Hanna (as Meriam Abbas)
Dominique Horwitz ... Victor
Oliver Breite Oliver Breite ... Jochen (as Oliver Bäßler)
Susanne Bormann ... Patty
Michael Gwisdek ... Peschke
Ricardo Valentim Ricardo Valentim ... Feliz
Ade Sapara ... Ricardo
Imogen Kogge Imogen Kogge ... Rita
Horst Krause ... Taxifahrer / Cab Driver
Axel Prahl Axel Prahl ... Polizist / Police Officer
Carmen-Maja Antoni Carmen-Maja Antoni ... Frau im Hospitz / Woman in Hospice
Ursula Karusseit Ursula Karusseit ... Frau Gerhardt
Dagmar Sitte Dagmar Sitte ... Kellnerin / Waitress
Christel Peters Christel Peters ... Alte Dame / Old Lady
Josefine Leuschner Josefine Leuschner ... Rote


The Pope is in town and the night of his visit is anything but heavenly for some of Berlin's inhabitants. The down-and-out, the rich and the poor, the polizei, the street kids and taxi drivers, in search of a little bit of happiness, all end up going for a harrowing odyssey through the labyrinth of the big city. Written by L.H. Wong <lhw@sfs.org.sg>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama


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Release Date:

12 August 1999 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Night Shapes See more »

Filming Locations:

Berlin, Germany


Box Office


DEM 3,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

A finely executed kaleidoscope of big city life and how it determines people's actions.
27 March 2001 | by libertyvalanceSee all my reviews

Writer/director Andreas Dresen has produced a nice little film with Nachtgestalten. It works on a level where Michael Haneke's Code inconnue failed miserably. The people, thrown together in a cold city where it is unwise to lift a finger to help a stranger in distress, are real and believable. Their actions are determined by the logic of their personalities and social position; watching Code inconnue you get the nauseating feeling that it is Haneke's pretentious opinion that is being forced down your throat; again and again. Dresen's stories allow for biting humor as well as moments of painful desperation; especially in my favourite story : that of the homeless couple in search of a hotelroom. Andreas Dresen is one of those new wave of young German directors who are pulling their country out of the oblivion where I for one thought they would be for a long time yet. Together with Tom Tykwer and Roland Suso Richter - to name but a few- Andreas Dresen is a director to watch. His script is fluent and well balanced; the direction never showy but to the point. It's a shame that good European films like Nachtgestalten don't get a general release in most countries while appalling creations like Code Inconnue do.

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