Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Was Am Ende Zählt (Nothing Else Matters)

The debut film by Julia von Heinz is a serious drama that laterally shows many situations surely happening in Europe like runaway teenagers, street teenagers, drugs distribution and consumption, cheating the welfare and healthcare systems, teen pregnancy, and other things. But most of all is an unusual love story between two girls that have not much left until they find each other.

Also written by von Heinz tells about Carla running away from his drunk father and trying to take the train from Berlin to Lyon to attend fashion design school, only to get robbed when boarding the train and is left with nothing. Outside the train station she finds Rico who is willing to help by giving her a job, but she has to sleep with him. Next day she’s taken to the boat Rico is renovating and there she meets Lucie, an orphan street girl that works and lives in the boat. As these two girls meet their lives will be changed forever in many ways, but most importantly they will have the best time of their short and lonely lives.

Not a easy movie to watch as not only is raw but also bad things happen one after another, but if you can sustain until the end just let me tell you that is totally worth it as has a very sweet and rewarding ending. Performances are good; especially Paula Kalenberg that plays Carla and Marie-Luise Schramm that plays Lucie.

As a movie is interesting with mostly handheld camera in natural light that gives total impression of raw realism that some had compared to the work of Ken Loach and I presume they do it not only because the production values but also because the rawness of a common and streetwise story.

The movie was screened at the 2007 Berlinale, 2007 Roma Cinema Fest, won the Special Jury Award at the 2008 Torino International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival and is still circulating the festival circuit.

The film is suited for adult audiences that enjoy raw dramas with a darkish look and arty style as the film and story are raw but compelling; but definitively is one that I do especially recommend to those that enjoy the lesbian interest genre and are open to watch a very different approach –in comparison to most genre films- to a love story.

I liked the film and was taken by the story and the performances, still there are some moments that made me feel uneasy but the rewarding ending made me expel a very long ahhh! as honestly I was expecting a not positive ending.


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