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When we dreamed

When we dreamed

Deutschland/Frankreich 2015 - mit Merlin Rose, Julius Nitschkoff, Joel Basman, Ruby O. Fee, Marcel Heuperman ...

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Regie:Andreas Dresen
Produktionsland:Deutschland/Frankreich 2015
Laufzeit:Approx. 117 min.
FSK:From 12 years
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Leipzig, shortly after the fall of communism: in a time when the GDR had just disappeared and the new Germany was not quite there yet, young people in particular lack stability and prospects for the future, but at the same time everything seems possible due to the fall of the Berlin Wall. It is a wild time, which is for Dani (Merlin Rose), Mark (Joel Basman), Rico (Julius Nitschkoff), Paul (Frederic Haselon) and Pitbull (Marcel Heuperman) also the most beautiful time of their still young life. They enjoy new freedoms, experiment with alcohol and drugs, discover love and still have space in their minds for small and big dreams. But the more they are confronted with violence, disappointments and losses, the less room there is for dreams…

With the film adaptation of Clemens Meyer's novel of success "When we dreamed", director Andreas Dresen once again proves his versatility after films as diverse as "Sommer vorm Balkon", "Wolke 9" or "Halt auf freier Strecke". The filmmaker shows a constant development and manages to surprise his audience again and again. This can, of course, happen both positively and negatively. And so the spirits of Dresden's films often differ, which won't be any different in "Als wir träumten".

There is no question that Dresen succeeded very well in making the feeling of a radical change palpable. This manifests itself not only in social form through the fall of the Berlin Wall, but also for the boys of Danis Clique in a very personal way through the step from teenager to adulthood. The film illustrates very well how the young people here in search of themselves lose themselves more and more, threatening to drift deeper and deeper into a whirlpool of violence, frustration and lack of perspective. This is mostly played convincingly and also radiates a certain authenticity through the good coordination of camera, editing and music.

However, it also has to be said that the movie loses itself in some scenes too much in trivialities or seems too bulky in its effort to be close to reality in order to be able to convince. For viewers who sniff into a world that is already strange to them, the whole thing becomes extremely exhausting in such moments. It's difficult to identify with the characters and their stories, which leads to a distance that significantly diminishes any intensity inherent in the staging.

On the other hand, those who find themselves in the story or in one of its protagonists will hardly notice the smaller weaknesses as such. But it is clear that "When we dreamed" is not a film for a broad target audience. It is not a light diet that invites you to relax after a hard day's work. Rather, the film is a worth seeing youth drama for arthouse cinema lovers who also deal with heavier subjects in the cinema. For this audience, Dresden's film about friendship, disillusionment and anarchy in the early 90s is certainly a very intense drama, which deserves a clear "worth seeing".

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