7.5/10
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Der freie Wille (2006)

A man is released from a mental institution after serving 9 years for multiple rape.

Director:

Matthias Glasner
Reviews
5 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Jürgen Vogel ... Theo Stoer
Sabine Timoteo Sabine Timoteo ... Netti Engelbrecht
André Hennicke ... Sascha
Manfred Zapatka ... Netti's father Claus Engelbrecht
Judith Engel Judith Engel ... Anja Schattschneider
Anna Brass Anna Brass ... Raped woman in the dunes
Anne-Kathrin Golinsky Anne-Kathrin Golinsky ... Seller in department store
Maya Bothe ... Sybille
Frank Wickermann Frank Wickermann ... Michael
Anna De Carlo Anna De Carlo ... Waitress
Bernadette Büllmann Bernadette Büllmann ... Singer of "Ave Maria"
Andreas Laurenz Maier Andreas Laurenz Maier ... Marius (as Andreas L. Maier)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marcel Batangtaris ... Toni
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Storyline

After nine years in psychiatric detention Theo, who has brutally assaulted and raped three women, is released. Living in a supervised community, he connects well with his social worker Sascha, finds a job at a print shop and even a girlfriend, Nettie, his principal's brittle and estranged daughter. But even though superficially everything seems to work out Theo's seething rage remains ready to erupt. Written by Armin Ortmann {armin@sfb288.math.tu-berlin.de}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany

Language:

German | French

Release Date:

24 August 2006 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

A szabad akarat See more »

Filming Locations:

Belgium See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

(at around 1h 08 mins) When Theo brings Sascha to the train station, the approaching train on the track is an Intercity Express (ICE). In the next shot, the train that is actually stopping at the platform is NOT an ICE, but an Intercity (IC) train, which can be identified by different windows and the gray rooftop. See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Unsentimental and afflicting love-story..."
21 May 2012 | by SindreKaspersenSee all my reviews

German screenwriter, producer and director Matthias Glasner's fifth feature film which he co-wrote with Jürgen Vogel and screenwriter Judith Angerbauer and co-produced with Jürgen Vogel, Christian Granderath and Frank Döhmann, was shot on location in the city of Mülheim, the Baltic Sea Island of Usedom and Berlin in Germany and in Belgium. It is a German production and premiered In competition at the 56th Berlin International Film Festival in 2006. It tells the story about Theo Stoer, a rapist who after spending more than nine years in a psychiatric hospital for crimes he committed while living and working as a kitchen helper on a Baltic Sea Island, is sent to an assisted living residence in Mülheim, Germany. Helped by a parole officer named Sascha, Theo gets a job at a printing office, begins to practice Martial Arts and is encouraged to find himself a woman whom he can take out on a date. Though struggling with a high level of anxiety Theo follows Sascha's advice and has no luck. He decides to give it a rest and focus on his daily tasks, but one day he is introduced by his boss Claus Engelbrecht to his daughter Nettie, a 27-year-old kitchen assistant who is about to move out from her father's house and into her own apartment. Theo and Nettie are both lonely individuals who seek the company of others and without knowing anything about Theo's history, Nettie becomes attracted to him.

Finely and acutely directed by European filmmaker Matthias Glasner, who was co-writer, co-cinematographer, co-producer and co-editor on this feature film, this quietly paced independent film draws an incisive and unsettling portrayal of a man who is trying to get back into society after serving time for committing horrendous crimes against women and an intimate and humane portrayal of a friendship and of a lonely, considerate and independent-minded woman who finds a connection and falls in love with a person she hardly knows. While notable for its gritty and naturalistic urban milieu depictions, the versatile production design by production designers Tom Horning and Conny Kotte and the fine editing by Matthias Glasner, German film editor Mona Braüer and film editor Julia Wiedwald, this at times silent and character-driven story depicts two merging studies of character and examines themes like loneliness, guilt and human relations.

This dense, somewhat disturbing and demanding psychological drama which alternates between the two main characters' viewpoints and between realism and non-realism, is impelled and reinforced by its rigorous narrative structure and the introspective and heartfelt acting performances by German screenwriter, producer and actor Jürgen Vogel and Swiss actress Sabine Timoteo. An unsentimental and afflicting love-story which gained, among other awards, the Prize of the Guild of German Art-house Cinemas Matthias Glasner and the Silver Berlin Bear for Outstanding Artistic Achievement Jürgen Vogel at the 56th Berlin International Film Festival in 2006.


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