|Die Frankfurt-Tipp Bewertung:|
|Laufzeit:||Ca. 91 Min|
|FSK:||From 12 years|
Probation Officer Benno (Christoph Maria Herbst) has had enough of his job: he is constantly lied to, robbed and used. He hasn't had the feeling of effecting or helping for a long time. And then his problem child Hotte (Peter Kurth) is also granted custody of his children Dennis (Jasper Smets) and Jenny (Emma Bading). An absolute catastrophe, since Hotte is only interested in child benefit and not in the education of his offspring. But then the crook begins to actually develop a little enjoyment of family life. But a tragic misfortune, a lucrative temptation and the committed Benno make it impossible for Hotte to actually become a better person...
"Die Kleinen und die Bösen" is the new film by director Markus Sehr, who already proved a good hand for unusual subjects with the Kurt Krömer comedy "Eine Insel namens Udo". And so it's not really surprising that his new movie can hardly be put into a clear drawer. He's funny, but he's not pure comedy. It has quiet, almost socio-critical, dark moments, but is anything but a drama. And there are even some slight thriller elements, which at the end are too oversubscribed to offer real suspense. Rather, the film is a colorful mix of different style elements, through which it gets its very own character. This is his great strength, but at the same time also his striking weakness.
For it is not exactly made easy for the viewer to become friends with the very special atmosphere of the production. Are we supposed to laugh or be shocked? And may a really gloomy dramaturgical twist follow the delightfully grotesque humour? The mixture of humor, social drama and romance might also seem a bit indecisive for some viewers. But if you can get involved in the unadapted staging, you will realize that Markus knows exactly what he is doing and that it is precisely the failure to meet the expectations of the audience that makes "The little ones and the bad ones" so appealing.
This already begins with the role of Christoph Maria Herbst, who is not just another "Stromberg" variant. No question about it, as a cynical disgust autumn is great like no other in Germany. But it's just unexpectedly refreshing to be allowed to see a different side of him, which is very likeable and yet amusing. Peter Kurth as Hotte is the perfect counterpart: he is loud, a proletarian as he says in the book and a not exactly pleasant contemporary. And yet one can laugh heartily at his audacious capers. This character then seems to go through a clear change - but also here Sehr still has some surprises in store for his audience, until the turbulent finale comes.
That's not quite as biting and consistent as the rest of the film. But even though the last few minutes are falling to the level of conventional TV movies, the rest of "Die Kleinen und die Bösen" is a really entertaining and surprising drama, which in its best moments even has a real cult character. If you like it a bit weird and unusual, you've come to the right place. Worth seeing
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