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Deutschland 2017 - with Johanna Wokalek, Hans-Jochen Wagner, Inga Birkenfeld, Andrea Szabová ...

The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:

Movie info

Direction:Jan Speckenbach
Cinema release:08.02.2018
Production country:Deutschland 2017
Running time:Ca. 102 Min
Rated:From 12 years
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Impulsiv makes Nora (Johanna Wokalek) a radical decision: Without saying goodbye she leaves her husband Philip (Hans-Jochen Wagner) and their two children together. Where are you going? She doesn't know that. She only knows that she wants to feel alive again, to free herself from the shackles of everyday life. While Nora is looking for her freedom, Philip has to try to maintain something of a normality for himself and his children - not knowing what happened to his wife and whether she will ever return…

"Freedom" is an extremely difficult film. Difficult because it is played very well and intensively by Johanna Wokalek, but also by the other actors, but dramaturgically it makes you rather angry. For a long time Nora's motives remain unexplained. As a viewer, you can only see her wandering around seemingly aimlessly, not behaving very sympathetically towards other people, having sex with strangers or getting a new hairstyle. Then one is confronted with the consequences of their actions, when Philip is shown desperately trying to be there for his children, to do his job and to look for Nora.

After all that you think that what I know must have happened to get the woman to take such a radical step. But the reason is frighteningly banal. Instead of talking or being consistent and separating, Nora just runs away. And that's because she crushed her everyday life? Sure, that's a feeling almost everyone has. But either you have the courage to really change something or you bite your teeth together and continue as before. What's to stop Nora from telling Philip that she's unhappy? What's so hard about leaving him when you can't? No, we'd rather leave the children behind and suffer in the distance. It may be that there are people for whom this may really be the only solution. Yet, in view of what the viewer gets to see in Nora's former life, her disappearance and especially her decision at the end of the movie is absolutely incomprehensible.

When then there is a convulsive attempt in history to thematize the problem of refugees and (more or less) subliminally existing racism in society, then the viewer can take the liberty to describe this drama as less successful and arguably constructed. It doesn't help that Johanna Wokalek's playing great. It doesn't help that there are some very atmospherically staged scenes, which at least might make the feuilleton cheer. And even if it's always positive, if a film stirs up and evokes strong emotions - as in this case anger and lack of understanding - there's only one thing for this very unwieldy drama: Conditionally worth seeing!

An article by Frankfurt-Tipp


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