5 December 2007 | mhcollector
A Highlight of German Performing Arts
Who would have thought that a plot being set in a nursing home for the aged could do without clichés, tear-jerking stereotypes or general accusations of our cold-hearted world?
Who would have thought that this film turned out to be a masterpiece of Germany's best actors of three generations...because they all, without any exception, play their parts in a withdrawn way, never sentimental, never theatrical?
On the contrary. Their outstanding skills achieve a deep understanding with the viewer, be it the workaholic played by the ever so convincing Herbert Knaup, the passionate but exhausted nurse superbly played by Suzanne von Borsody, the angry young woman authentically played by Anna Maria Mühe, and last but not least the cast of the old, with just wonderful performances of Rosemarie Fendel, Helmut Baumann and Ernst Stankowski. Just look at the face of Veronika Fitz in some of her small, but unforgettable scenes and you will never forget what tragedy is.
What is life like when you are not needed any more? Who are you when you get old and become a burden to both family and society? The film doesn't give any satisfying answers, it leaves you alone with your impressions and irritations. But maybe this is the reason why you will not forget it, you will think of it again and again. Because it showed life as life works. And still, there's some hope, some tenderness or even some kind of poetry that you will also remember.
Director Sylvia Hoffmann should be awarded for all that. And the magnificent cast as well.