24 January 2006 | coyets
More than a crime film
The first few scenes show the two main characters of the film very much in love, and their job as police officers is in this phase simply secondary. The viewer is introduced to their surroundings and the people they know, before the crime element even gets a look in. Despite the violent crime scene being a key to the whole story, this is not an ordinary crime film. Just as 'West Side Story' does, this film uses the crime to comment on the hopelessness of the underprivileged. Unlike in the tale of gang rivalry, the heroes are not members of the underclass itself, but privileged police officers. Despite the better position in life, the two heroes do not have everything their own way, and are even presented with problems of their own. These turns of events allow an interesting story entangled with subplots involving less better off characters to captivate the viewer. The moral dilemmas confronting the two leading characters are presented in such a way that the viewer is easily able to understand the difficulties of the situations. The conclusion of the film is satisfying and unexpected, fitting in with the development of the main characters without being the only possible way it could have finished.
The performances of the leading pair, Lisa Martinek as Rita Bluhm and Felix Eitner as Martin Sabarski, underline the changing moods and the drama of the story. They are both very good performances without achieving brilliance. The film concentrates much more on Rita, who is depicted as being almost too good to be true, as on Martin, a more complex character with a dark side as well as his obvious good characteristics. Nikolaus Leytner, who wrote and directed it achieves an end result distinctly better than average, but he could have made it far more tense at times in addition to adding more complexity to Rita's character. The supporting actors played their roles ably without anyone being particularly inspired.
This was not only entertaining, but also a thought provoking insight into the lives of the less well off.