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|Laufzeit:||Ca. 118 Min|
|FSK:||From 6 years|
Paris in 1844: Shortly before the Industrial Revolution, 26 year old Karl Marx (August Diehl) meets Friedrich Engels (Stefan Konarske). At first Marx sees in the young man only the well-to-do son of a factory owner and thus the embodiment of everything he fights against - which finally brought him into French exile with his wife Jenny (Vicky Krieps). But soon he notices that he and Engels are swimming on the same wavelength and pursuing the same goal. The two men become more than friends, as with Jenny's help they work on those writings that are supposed to ignite a great revolution of the working class. But as well as they succeed in putting their thoughts on paper, as difficult it is to bring them to the people and to unite the labour movement behind them…
"The young Karl Marx" is an interesting history lesson that not only traces the difficult path of two men whose writings have had a lasting influence on society, but also reveals how current their theses are even after more than 150 years. At the same time, however, it's also a film that highlights the important role of Jenny Marx, who often disappears in the shadow of the two men, which gives the whole thing an additional level of meaning. Director Raoul Peck has tried to stage the whole thing as authentically as possible and at the same time apply a contemporary narrative style in order not to let it seem too dry. He succeeded in doing this very well, even though the movie can't completely break away from some lengths and unwieldy, heady moments.
Visually appealingly realized and especially played convincingly by the three main actors, "Der junge Karl Marx" tries to be as value-free as possible. The film is not intended to be a heroic epic, but to leave it largely to the viewers to form their own opinion about the clear connections to the present - it is not for nothing that Marx's portrait during the financial crisis adorned numerous cover pictures of numerous magazines worldwide. Nevertheless, the character drawing is already quite clearly laid out. The opponents of Marx and Engels are very dogged, unsympathetic characters, who are really happy when they fail miserably with their attempts to silence the two men.
Thanks to Peck concentrating on a relatively short part of Karl Marx's life, he is able to cast a quite comprehensive insight into these events - something that many biopics, which illuminate the entire life of a well-known personality, do not succeed in. This makes the story relatively gripping, even if there are the lengths and bulky moments already mentioned. Whoever is interested in the labour movement of the 19th century and the beginnings of Karl Marx is offered a very well staged and convincingly played historical drama, which, despite some weaknesses, still deserves to be seen.
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