|Die Frankfurt-Tipp Bewertung:|
|Laufzeit:||Approx. 230 min.|
|FSK:||From 6 years|
In the middle of the 19th century poverty, famine and oppression reigned throughout Germany. For hundreds of thousands, emigration is the only way to escape this misery. In Hunsrück, too, many people dream of a better life in a new home. One of them is the young Jakob (Jan Dieter Schneider), who uses every free minute to read and learn the language of the jungle Indians. He is firmly convinced that one day he will be able to use them when he has found his own paradise in the forests of Brazil. But the way there is long and dreams alone are not enough to bring him there. Jakob's father in particular, who puts all his strength into keeping the family, has no understanding for the daydreams of his useless son. Only in Jettchen (Antonia Bill), the daughter of an impoverished gemstone cutter, Jakob seems to have found a kindred soul. But whenever a small shine of hope warms the lives of the two young people, fate strikes with bitter harshness and threatens to destroy every spark of their hope and longing…
With "The Other Homeland" filmmaker Edgar Reitz continues the spirit of his legendary "Homeland" trilogy. Once again the focus is on the Simon family from the fictitious village of Schabbach, but this time in 1840. The village was painstakingly built up for the shooting, with Reitz attaching great importance to using only materials that were available to people in the 19th century. The same should also be done when tailoring the costumes. Thus the actors were offered the greatest possible authenticity, in which they could embed their realistically designed game. The film was shot with a largely natural illumination in black and white, with small elements such as flames or flowers being colored every now and then. This symbolises the small glimmers of hope that light up again and again in the sad everyday life of the people here.
"The Other Home" is a truly ambitious project that can be described as absolutely successful in terms of its intentions. But it's also a very difficult and bulky movie, which demands a lot from its viewers. Thus, the very carried narrative style over almost four hours is just as exhausting as the authentic dialect, which is at times somewhat difficult to understand. In addition, the drabness of the content, which is maintained by constant blows of fate almost throughout the film's entire duration, ensures that the film cannot necessarily be described as what is generally regarded as entertaining.
The mammoth work is therefore a very special challenge that only viewers who are familiar with the narrative style of Edgar Reitz and appreciate his previous "home" films should face. For those who know what they are getting involved with are offered a truly special work that takes the viewer back to the year 1840 for four hours, makes hunger, suffering and cold really palpable and sets an intense contrast to the fast-moving everyday life with its carried pace. No easy cinema cost and for those viewers who can't make friends with the somewhat unwieldy style, this is a real test of patience. But those who love challenging programme cinema fare and historical fabrics of a very special kind should definitely visit "The Other Home"!
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