"Das Geheimnis der Hebamme" is a German period piece from spring last year (2016) and this one is based on a novel. The two script writers who adapted it have a solid deal of known films in their bodies of work, so experience or lack thereof is certainly not an issue here. This is also true because in the directing chair sits Roland Suso Richter, one of Germany's most known and most successful small screen filmmakers. And like some other television works by the man, this one here also has a truly massive runtime of just minimally under three hours. The cast includes names you may have come across in other projects if you are into German films namely lead actress Ruby O. Fee, but also the likes of Wuest, Kroetz and Tambrea, maybe even Fuith. It's no really big names, but good enough I guess. Even if this was not a Sat 1 production but for ARD, I would say it rarely gets above the pretty weak Wanderhure level in terms of quality. It's not a failure, but way too long for its own good and lets be honest Ruby O. Fee is not lead actress material in a 3-hour epic in which she plays the title character. Actually, from what I saw in here I am not sure if I would even call her an actress at all. Yes she may be a bit of a stunner, but in terms of range she still has a long way to go. It seems the makers here realized it too as the longer the film goes, the less significant her role becomes and there are long sequences that don't have her included as well and instead focus on the 2 men (the good guy and bad guy) in the center of the story. As a consequence, the midwife aspect also moves further and further into the background and the title does not seem like a particularly great choice anymore. Okay had this been made for Sat 1, we'd probably have the female protagonist give birth at the end to her own child with her female best friend being the midwife, but as a sequel to this one here is not yet completely out of the picture yet, maybe I should be quiet as we don't know what the future brings, especially with everybody from the core players surviving and with that last shot. I have not read the book here by the way, so my review refers entirely to the quality of the film. If a mediocre actor like Tambrea is the only one close to a standout, it says a lot. His acting isn't great either as the badass aspect is simply not credible, but the aura that surrounds him is somewhat solid. That's just one of very few upsides here. Overall I give this way too long film a thumbs-down of course. Not recommended.