Opening 21 Jun 2012
How often would we choose to go to an isolated village near the sea to live alone in a small house? What would be the reasons for doing so? Tania (Birge Schade) moves to such a village in northern Germany (filmed in Eiderstedt and the surrounding area, i.e., St. Peter Ording, Tating, etc., along the North Sea Coast of Germany, almost straight north from Hamburg). She is a moderately successful actress with enough money to support her simple needs. She spends her time driving into the village where people either think they may have seen her somewhere else before or antagonistically wonder what she thinks she is doing in a place she doesn’t belong. Or she works in her garden or takes a cigarette break. She often invites a teenaged boy to sit with her in her kitchen. The only other visitors are a group of men from the village who sit there judgmentally one time. Supposedly, Tania can no longer feel any emotions (deathly for an actress, I would say) and, in order to overcome this deficit, she decides to “steal” this boy, Thore (Daniel Michel). Why not? In the end, she convinces him to go away with her (there is more than a little sensuality in the air) and his parents agree. That’s the whole story. We are supposed to grasp the plot through long pauses or Tania staring into space or getting in or out of her car.
This film, written and directed by Markus Busch, is practically a two-man play, as the actors, except for Tania and Thore, are more or less background. The real star is the harsh, northern atmosphere: the grey, the rain, the silence – practically a silent movie. Markus Busch has written many scripts, e.g., for television such as Tatort or films such as Die Freunde der Freunde or Der Felsen, both staring Dominik Graf. As a first-time director, this low budget film was made possible with help from the Filmförderung Hamburg-Schleswig-Holstein and WDR television and finished in just 20 days. It could definitely be used as successful advertising for the area, which looks wonderful even though it was filmed during the cold time of the year. (Becky Tan)