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The Beloved Sisters

The Beloved Sisters

Deutschland/Österreich 2013 - with Hannah Herzsprung, Florian Stetter, Henriette Confurius, Claudia Messner, Ronald Zehrfeld ...

The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:

Movie info

Genre:Drama, Romance
Direction:Dominik Graf
Cinema release:31.07.2014
Production country:Deutschland/Österreich 2013
Running time:Approx. 139 min.
Rated:From 6 years
Web page:www.die-geliebten-schwestern.senator

Actually, the young Charlotte von Lengefeld (Henriette Confurius) was supposed to be raised by her godmother Frau von Stein (Maja Maranow) in Weimar to become a lady-in-waiting and perhaps even land a wealthy husband. But Charlotte feels completely out of place in courtly society. Only her older sister Caroline von Beulwitz (Hannah Herzsprung) can complain about her misery in long letters. But then she meets the young author Friedrich Schiller (Florian Stetter) - an encounter that will change not only her life, but also that of the unhappily married Caroline forever. For when Schiller travels to Rudolstadt to visit the two sisters at Caroline's invitation, all three immediately recognize a kindred spirit that grows into a love triangle whose passion is soon expressed in more than coded letters.

The Beloved Sisters marks director Dominik Graf's return to the big screen. That he has worked primarily for television in recent years, however, is clearly evident in his latest work. Despite a coherent set and a few images that look particularly impressive on the big screen, this unusual love story often seems more like a chamber play that would be better off on television or perhaps even on the theater stage. Especially the acting of the actors seems too theatrical and therefore too bulky for the cinema. That's not to say that the acting is bad. On the contrary. Especially Henriette Confurius and Hannah Herzsprung deliver outstanding performances. But the acting doesn't seem real, but too artificial, which can work well in the directness of the theatre, but is rather disturbing in the cinema, because the access to the characters is made unnecessarily difficult for the audience.

But the biggest problem of the film is the role of the narrator, which Graf himself has taken over. He mumbles the narrator's text so listlessly that this feeling is quickly transferred to the viewer. It doesn't help that even in the short theatrical version (there's also a festival version that's over 30 minutes longer), the film has to contend with numerous tedious lengths. Sure, The Beloved Sisters has some very beautiful and also intense moments. But at too many moments, the various aspects of the production make it too difficult to get swept up in what's going on for there to be an all-around positive conclusion at the end.

There's no question that there's a lot of passion and talent at work here. The camerawork is as convincing as the costumes, and it's also evident that the actors have tried to bring some intensity to their characters and the story. However, apart from the feuilleton and a few lovers of great art cinema, few viewers are likely to take kindly to Graf's production. For those who don't mind the criticisms listed here and have a soft spot for German costume dramas, however, the interesting and essentially very beautiful story should be enough to justify going to the cinema. And for such viewers there is then also a: Worth seeing! All others can wait for the TV broadcast of this WDR/BR/Degeto/ARTE/ORF co-production

An article by Frankfurt-Tipp

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Cinema trailer for the movie "The Beloved Sisters (Deutschland/Österreich 2013)"
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