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Backstory (2016)

As a young child our protagonist is left by his mother and has to live with his violent father. He fights his way through adolescence and falls in love with the woman of his dreams and just... See full summary »


Joschka Laukeninks
1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Xenia Assenza
Jan Stapelfeldt Jan Stapelfeldt ... Man
Jessica McIntyre ... Wife
Franziska Rieck Franziska Rieck ... Mother
Milo Possehl Milo Possehl
Christian Concilio ... Father
Isabella Rautenberg Isabella Rautenberg
Paul Lionel Grünthal Paul Lionel Grünthal
John Possehl John Possehl
Vincent Possehl Vincent Possehl
Lewi Lewandowski Lewi Lewandowski
Hossein Yountchi Hossein Yountchi
Philipp Moog ... Narrator
Mia Kovac Mia Kovac ... Teenage Crush
Birthe Gerken Birthe Gerken ... Girlfriend 1


As a young child our protagonist is left by his mother and has to live with his violent father. He fights his way through adolescence and falls in love with the woman of his dreams and just as everything seems to be finally working out for him, a sudden event changes the course of his life forever. A story about how everything we love, everything we learn, everything we build, everything we fear, will one day be gone.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

wedding | birth | death | life | sex scene | See All (23) »


Short | Drama







Release Date:

November 2016 (Ireland) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

The Marmalade See more »
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Technical Specs



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User Reviews

Effective, Yet Slightly Shallow Short Film
10 April 2018 | by Better_TVSee all my reviews

This German production gets high marks from me on the film's technical merits alone. You can watch it for free on Vimeo, and I suspect it's already being used by film professors to demonstrate the effectiveness of the classic "match cut" technique, where every scene is purposefully staged to be synchronous or parallel with the previous one.

The film only breaks its match-cutting pattern towards the very end, for reasons I won't spoil here.

It's a film about a single life, from beginning to end, distilled into six minutes. While most people will probably find it very profound, I ultimately found it a bit cynical in its implication that life consists of a series of meaningless events - save for the moment when you met that special someone, which outweighs everything else. It is a sad film about the meaninglessness of experience, which in its attempt at a communicating a universal truth, still finds itself relying on Hollywood clichés about youth and adulthood.

I've seen nothing but praise for this film, so I suspect my feelings are not typical. In the director's statement, he says:

"We hope that everyone will be able to see at least a small part of his own life in this story. And we hope that it inspires people to enjoy every single moment they have been given in this life. Because time keeps on running. Always."

I can get behind that sentiment, even if the film doesn't seem to be communicating one man's enjoyment of his life so much as a life on autopilot, one filled with impulsive decisions in the beginning and a rote existence towards the end, all infused with a stereotypical middle-upper class ennui that American prestige dramas have long been fascinated with ("Breaking Bad," "The Sopranos," "House," etc.).

Regardless of the story it's still a technical achievement, one with superb sound design and a killer voiceover by Philipp Moog linking all the disparate life moments together. It's six minutes long, very ambitious, and has won a bunch of awards. No reason not to give it a watch.

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