26 June 2002 | Mikew3001
One of the best German films of the nineties
"Knocking On Heaven's Door" has been a big German box office hit in the winter of 1996/97 and is still considered one of the best German movies of that decade next to the international success "Lola rennt". This is a breath-taking comedy about two losers (Til Schweiger and Jan-Josef Liefers) dying of cancer and getting anything they want during their last days on earth. They are robbing a bank and nicking a car containing a gangster's suitcase with a million marks in it. Of course the gangsters and the police hunting the guys who just want to reach the sea to die somewhere at the shore.
Although this road-movie story itself isn't very new and has been filmed many times in Hollywood movies, it stands on its own. The story has dozens of quotes and references from American movies and film genres, but it also knows how to add a local, German and European style to it. You see two henchmen, a Turk and a Belgian, dressed in black suits and with sunglasses like taken from a Tarantino film. You see Hannes Jaenicke dressed as a fatally-looking leather cop U.S.A. style, drinking Jaegermeister (a popular German spice liquor). You see popular fifties girlie actress Conny Froboess playing Til Schweiger's mum, an Elvis Presley adoring fan.
There are plenty of funny scenes in this movie, many witty dialogues, absurd situations and brilliant performances by all actors featuring Corinna Harfouch as a doctor, "Sexluder" Jenny Elvers as a nurse, Dutch movie stars Huub Stapel and Rutger Hauer as gangster bosses, Ralf Herforth as dumb police officer, etc. Schweiger and Liefers are giving the best performances of their career, adding pain, sadness and tragedy to the all-action-comedy style. The photography, editing and the surf-rock-like sound track by Selig are also outstanding. Take a look at this example of best German nineties cinema!!!