|The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:|
|Production country:||Deutschland/Österreich 2016|
|Running time:||Approx. 126 min|
|Rated:||From 12 years|
Southern Germany, early 1940s: Since his single father, a traveling salesman, has no permanent residence, and he is deemed uneducable by the children's homes he has been in so far, 13-year-old Ernst Lossa (Ivo Pietzcker) is sent to a mental institution. Actually, he is only supposed to stay here until his father has found a permanent job and an apartment. But then the boy notices that sick and disabled inmates are being killed on the orders of hospital director Dr. Veithausen (Sebastian Koch). He knows that it can not only hit his new friends, but also himself at any time. And so there is only one way out for him: escape!
With Fog in August, director Kai Wessel deals with an extremely dark chapter of the Nazi regime: the so-called euthanasia program, to which more than 200,000 people fell victim in German mental hospitals between 1939 and 1944. Based on the true fate of 13-year-old Ernst Lossa, the cruel events are thematized in a gripping drama. This is hard stuff, not always easy to bear. Nevertheless, Wessel has succeeded in stirring up the viewer without completely overwhelming him with the heaviness of the story.
You could now accuse the film that this is achieved by the fact that the story is told rather conventionally and is not entirely free of clichés, whereby especially with some characters a somewhat too one-dimensional drawing can be noted. But even if this point of criticism might be true, it doesn't change much about the enormous power of this drama. Kai Wessel has directed an important film, which makes you angry, which can make you cry, but which also takes time for a few somewhat lighter moments, in which something like a small glimmer of hope is allowed to show itself.
Not to be left unmentioned here are the actors, first and foremost Ivo Pietzcker (Jack), who was only 12 years old during filming, who embodies the various facets of Ernst Lossa absolutely credibly and reveals an enormous talent, especially in very difficult scenes. But also Fritzi Haberlandt as the good soul of the asylum and Henriette Confurius in the thankless role of the ice-cold angel of death leave a lasting impression. The entire ensemble, also supported by set, camera or music, ensures that Nebel im August has become an extremely intense work.
It's difficult to recommend a film like this as worth seeing. There is no question that it is a great, very good and important work - but it is also a very, very difficult one. You have to be willing to deal with this horrific subject, because what you've seen is really hard to shake off. However, that's exactly what shows the power this film has. And therefore there is then also a very clear: Absolutely worth seeing!
An article by Frankfurt-Tipp