Advertisements
jump to navigation

Jerichow-Movie Review 02/22/2013

Posted by Films to consider in Action/Thriller, German Film Awards, German Film Critics Association Awards, German language film, Movies, Suspense, Venice Film Festival.
Tags: , , ,
3 comments

Jerichow (German) 2008

Written and directed by Christian Petzold
Starring Benno Fürmann, Nina Hoss, and Hilmi Sözer

NOMINATED, Best Direction; Outstanding Feature Film, German Film Awards
WINNER, Best Film (Petzold), German Film Critics Association Awards
NOMINATED, Golden Lion – Petzold, Venice Film Festival

Ali (Sözer), a German citizen of Turkish background, hires dishonorably discharged veteran Thomas (Fürmann) to help him run a string of snack bars. Thomas falls in love with Laura (Hoss), Ali’s wife, who has more than one reason to be indebted to her abusive husband.

A satisfyingly suspenseful retelling of The Postman Always Rings Twice. Christian Petzold directed The State I Am In as well as Yella (which also starred Nina Hoss) and Gespenster which together comprise what is known as Petzold’s Gespenster trilogy.

93 min. Unrated. Adult themes and content.

 

Advertisements

Young Goethe in Love-Movie Review 07/08/2012

Posted by Films to consider in Bambi Awards, Based on true events, Comedy, Drama, German Film Awards, German Film Critics Award, German language film, Movies, New Faces Awards, Palm Springs International Film Festival, Philipp Stölzl, Romance.
2 comments

Young Goethe in Love (German) 2010
original title: Goethe!

Directed by Philipp Stölzl
Starring Alexander Fehling, Moritz Bleibtreu, and Miriam Stein

NOMINATED, Best Actor (Fehling), Bambi Awards
WINNER, Film Award in Gold for Makeup; NOMINATED, Film Award in Gold, Best Leading Actor (Fehling); Outstanding Feature Film; Best Production Design, German Film Awards
NOMINATED, Best Film (Stölzl), German Film Critics Association Awards
WINNER, New Faces Award (Stein), Germany
NOMINATED, Audience Award, Best Narrative Feature, (Stölzl et al.), Palm Springs International Film Festival

A lighthearted and touching look at a year in the life of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (Fehling). At 23, Goethe is not serious about the law career his father insists he follow but is serious about poetry and about the love he feels for Lotte Buff (Stein).

After Lotte marries someone else, Goethe’s The Sorrows of Young Werther, based upon his romance with her, is published, paving the way for his literary fame. A period film for the romantics among us, perhaps not as satisfying to history buffs.

102 min. Not rated.

 

Cherry Blossoms-Movie Review *** 03/09/2012

Posted by Films to consider in Bavarian Film Awards, Berlin International Film Festival, Butoh performance, Emotional Drama, European Film Awards, German Film Awards, German Film Critics Award, German language film, Seattle International Film Festival, Valldolid International Film Festival.
add a comment

Cherry Blossoms (German) 2008 ***

Written and directed by Doris Dörrie
Starring Elmar Wepper, Hannelore Elsner, and Aya Irizuki

WINNER, Best Actor (Wepper); Best Production, Bavarian Film Awards
NOMINATED, Golden Berlin Bear (Dörrie), Berlin International Film Festival
NOMINATED, Best Actor (Wepper), European Film Awards
WINNER, Film Award in Gold, Best Leading Actor (Wepper) and Best Costume Design; Film Award in Silver, Outstanding Feature Film; NOMINATED, Film Award in Gold, Best Direction (Dörrie); Best Supporting Actress (Elsner); Best Screenplay (Dörrie), German Film Awards
WINNER, Best Actor (Wepper), German Film Critics Association Awards
WINNER, Golden Space Needle Award-Best Film (Dörrie), Seattle International Film Festival
NOMINATED, Golden Spike (Dörrie), Valldolid International Film Festival

When a doctor tells Trudi (Elsner) that her husband Rudi (Wepper) doesn’t have much longer to live, she decides it would be best to keep the prognosis from him. Instead, she tries to get Rudi to visit his children, one of whom lives in Japan, a place she herself always longed to visit.

A story of love and grieving, beautifully photographed and beautifully acted. Especially entrancing are the sequences of Butoh, an avant garde performance form that began in Japan in the 1960s.

Highly recommended.

124 min. Not rated.

Here’s a short Butoh performance (not from the movie):

 

Mostly Martha-Movie Review 01/03/2012

Posted by Films to consider in Comedy, European Film Awards, German Film Awards, Light Drama, Mons International Festival of Love Films, Nantucket Film Festival, Romance, Sandra Nettelbeck.
2 comments

Mostly Martha (German) 2001
Bella Martha

Among other awards and nominations:
WINNER, Best Actor (Castellito); NOMINATED, Best Actress (Gedeck), European Film Awards
WINNER, Film Award in Gold, Outstanding Actress (Gedeck); NOMINATED, Outstanding Feature Film, German Film Awards
WINNER, Best Actor (Castellito); Best Actress (Gedeck); Best Screenplay (Nettelbeck); Grand Prize (Nettelbeck), Mons International Festival of Love Films
WINNER, Best Feature Screenplay (Nettelbeck), Nantucket Film Festival

Directed by Sandra Nettelbeck
Starring Martina Gedeck, Sergio Castellito, and Maxime Foerste

Martha Klein (Gedeck) is a highstrung chef who is passionate about food and obsessed with her work. She becomes guardian to her eight-year-old niece Lina (Foerste) after Lina’s mother is killed in a car accident. Martha is used to life as a single woman, and their life together is hectic. While Martha tries to cope with her demanding job, her grieving niece refuses to eat or attend school. When an Italian chef named Mario is hired to fill in at the restaurant, his carefree approach to cooking distresses Martha, but he eventually wins her over.

While the plot is not too inventive, Gedeck and Castellito make the most of some funny kitchen scenes, and Maxime Foerste plays Lina with just the right touch of sullenness considering her situation. And, of course, the beautifully presented food dishes will make you hungry.

This film receives high ratings from viewers on IMDB, more so than the 2007 remake, No Reservations, with Catherine Zeta-Jones, Aaron Eckhart, and Abigail Breslin, which I haven’t seen (and don’t necessarily plan to).

106 min. Rated PG

 

The Edge of Heaven-Movie Review *** 09/11/2011

Posted by Films to consider in Cannes Film Festival, Drama, Emotional Drama, European Film Awards, German Film Awards, German language film, Movies, Turkish language film.
add a comment

The Edge of Heaven (German/Turkish) 2007 ***
Auf der anderen Seite

Highly recommended

Among other awards and nominations:
WINNER, Best Screenplay; NOMINATED, Palme d’Or, Cannes Film Festival
WINNER, Best Editing; Best Screenplay; Best Supporting Actor (Kurtiz); Best Supporting Actresses (Köse and Ziolkowska), Ankara International Film Festival
NOMINATED, Best Foreign Film, César Awards, France
WINNER, Best Screenwriter (Akin); NOMINATED, Best Director (Akin); Best Film, European Film Awards
WINNER, Best Direction; Best Screenplay; Best Editing; Outstanding Feature Film; NOMINATED, Best Supporting Actress (Schygulla), German Film Awards

Written and directed by Fatih Akin (director of Head-On)

Starring Nurgül Yesilçay, Baki Davrak, Tuncel Kurtis, Hanna Schygulla, Patrycia Ziolkowska, and Nursel Köse

An excellent and moving film about six people in three families whose very different lives become interconnected: Nejat (Davrak) and his father Ali (Kurtis); Susanne (Schygulla) and her daughter Charlotte (Ziolkowska); Yeter (Köse) and her daughter Ayten (Yesilçay). All are searching for someone or something; eventually, they will find what they need, but not necessarily what they were looking for. As the searches take on a life of their own, the action moves from Germany to Turkey.

At the end of this almost two-hour film, I felt as if I knew much more about these people than the time allowed. Director Akin foretells the outcome of a segment, and then leads us there in unexpected and very satisfying ways. We sometimes know what is about to happen to whom, but that doesn’t take anything away from how it happens.

116 min. Not rated. Adult themes and subject matter.

 

North Face-Movie Review 08/21/2011

Posted by Films to consider in Adventure, Based on true events, Drama, German Film Awards, German Film Critics Award, German language film, Movies.
3 comments

North Face (German) 2008
Nordwand

Based on the 1936 attempt to conquer the North Face of the Swiss Eiger

WINNER, Film Award in Gold, Best Cinematography; Best Sound, German Film Awards
WINNER, Best Cinematography; Best Screenplay, German Film Critics Award
NOMINATED, Golden Reel Award, Motion Picture Sound Editors, USA

Directed by Philipp Stölzl
Starring Benno Furman, Florian Lukas, Johnanna Wokalek, and Ulrich Tukur

Toni Kurz (Furman) and Andi Hinterstoisser (Lukas) are two young climbers determined to be the first team to conquer the North Face. Ironically, although they are not sympathizers with the Nazi regime, if they do conquer the “Murder Wall,” they will be lauded as German heroes.

With a mix of romance and adventure, along with atrocious weather conditions, this film made me once again wonder “Why???” while at the same time marveling at what mountain climbers undergo to get to the top.

I especially liked the character of Luise (Wokalek), a brave photojournalist who grew up with the two climbers and is in love with one of them. Her boss, the cold and calculating Henry is well played by Ulrich Tukur (from the Lives of Others).

The cinematography in this film is absolutely incredible; the view of the climbers is as if you are hanging nearby, watching these men make decisions between life and death.

121 min. Not rated. Intense scenes.