Hotel Rock’n’Roll (2016)

Hotel Rock’n’Roll
Director: Helmut Köpping, Michael Ostrowski
Writer: Michael Glawogger, Michael Ostrowski
Sequel to: Nacktschnecken, Contact High
Cast: Michael Ostrowski, Pia Hierzegger, Gerald Votava, Georg Friedrich, Detlev Buck, Hilde Dalik, Johannes Zeiler, Jayney Klimek, Helmut Köpping
Seen on: 3.9.2016

Plot:
Mao (Pia Hierzegger) inherited an old hotel from her uncle and decides to run it together with her friends and band mates Max (Michael Ostrowski) and Jerry (Gerald Votava). They want to make it a hotel with a rock theme and lifestyle. Meanwhile Schorsch (Georg Friedrich) just happens to crash into the hotel pond after robbing a bank, which brings Schorsch’s business partner Harry (Detlev Buck) to the hotel. Since Harry owns a big hotel in the area, he would like nothing more than to take over the hotel from Mao, but she won’t give up that easily, despite everything.

Hotel Rock’n’Roll was entertaining and fun. Although it didn’t manage to blow me away, it definitely had its moments.

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Contact High (2009)

Contact High
Director: Michael Glawogger
Writer: Michael Glawogger, Michael Ostrowski
Sequel to: Nacktschnecken
Cast: Michael Ostrowski, Raimund WallischPia Hierzegger, Georg Friedrich, Detlev BuckHilde Dalik, Alina Pölzl, Jeremy Strong, Anna Frances Dioso
Seen on: 15.8.2016

Plot:
A spanish drugdealer forgot a bag in Poland, so he asks his partner/employee Harry (Detlev Buck) who works in Vienna to retrieve it for him. Harry passes on the job to Schorsch (Georg Friedrich) who in turn asks Mao (Pia Hierzegger) because he wants to watch the 24 hour Le Mans race. But Mao has to babysit, so she sends Max (Michael Ostrowski) and Johann (Raimund Wallisch) to do it instead. But those two can’t necessarily be trusted, and Harry is anxious to see the bag home safe and sound. While Max and Johann think of the entire thing as a nice adventure and an excellent opportunity to make some much-needed cash, Harry convinces Schorsch to follow them and make sure that they fulfill their mission.

Contact High is often funny and sometimes stronger than Nacktschnecken, but for the most part it’s clearly weaker.

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Nacktschnecken [Slugs] (2004)

Nacktschnecken [Slugs is the correct translation, but literally it means “naked snails”]
Director: Michael Glawogger
Writer: Michael Glawogger, Michael Ostrowski
Cast: Michael Ostrowski, Raimund Wallisch, Pia Hierzegger, Iva Lukic, Sophia Laggner, Georg Friedrich, Mike Supancic, Brigitte Kren, Christoph Grissemann, Andreas Kiendl, Detlev Buck
Seen on: 14.8.2016

Plot:
Johann (Raimund Wallisch), Max (Michael Ostrowski) and Mao (Pia Hierzegger) are constantly looking for opportunities to make a little money. While Johann works as a postman, Max simply dreams and Mao occasionally sells drugs. Through that work she meets Schorsch (Georg Friedrich) who tells her that the easiest way to  make some money is to shoot a porn film. Inspired by that, Johann, Max and Mao jump at the chance. They find two women (Iva Lukic, Sophia Laggner) willing to participate, grab a camera and get going. But maybe shooting a porn isn’t quite as easy as they imagined.

Nacktschnecken is a fun film without much pretense at anything else than wanting to be fun. While I couldn’t go along with it all the time, I did enjoy it most of the time.

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Wild (2016)

Wild
Director: Nicolette Krebitz
Writer: Nicolette Krebitz
Cast: Lilith Stangenberg, Georg Friedrich, Silke Bodenbender, Saskia Rosendahl, Pit Bukowski
Seen on: 27.7.2016

Plot:
Ania (Lilith Stangenberg) lives a quiet life. Her sister (Saskia Rosendahl) just moved out, leaving her the apartment for herself. Apart from her boss’ (Georg Friedrich) temper, things at work are calm as well. But then Ania sees a wolf in the small patch of forest next to her apartment building and she becomes obsessed with capturing it.

Wild is a strange film, but in the best sense. It’s open to a lot of interpretation, although to me it clearly tells the story of a woman who discovers and falls in love with her own wild side. And we could stand more films of that kind.

wild

[SPOILERS]

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Nordrand [Northern Skirts] (1999)

Nordrand
Director: Barbara Albert
Writer: Barbara Albert
Cast: Nina Proll, Edita Malovcic, Astrit Alihajdaraj, Tudor Chirila, Michael Tanczos, Georg Friedrich, Brigitte Kren, Margarete Tiesel
Seen on: 12.2.2016

Plot:
Jasmin (Nina Proll) and Tamara (Edita Malovcic) were in school together when they were kids, but have since drifted apart. While Tamara is working as a nurse and dating Roman (Michael Tanczos), leading a relatively stable life, Jasmin is drifting at the edge of the politically right scene, moving from guy to guy and none of them are particularly nice. Their paths cross again, when they both end up getting an abortion on the same day. And somehow this time their connection seems to stick.

Nordrand is a smart film that looks closely at harsh social circumstances in Vienna. And it’s also a film with vivid characters that are lovingly set in scene.

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Silentium (2004)

Silentium
Director: Wolfgang Murnberger
Writer: Wolfgang Murnberger, Josef Hader, Wolf Haas
Based on: Wolf Haas‘ novel
Sequel to: Komm, süßer Tod
Cast: Josef Hader, Simon Schwarz, Joachim Król, Maria Köstlinger, Udo Samel, Jürgen Tarrach, Rosie Alvarez, Georg Friedrich, Johannes Silberschneider, Karl Fischer, Herbert Fux, Dirk Stermann, Christoph Schlingensief, Wolf Haas
Seen on: 23.7.2015

Plot:
Simon Brenner (Josef Hader) now lives in Salzburg where he barely gets by with occasional jobs, the most recent of which – store detective – he promptly loses when he accuses the daughter of the director of the Salzburger Festspiele, Konstanze (Maria Köstlinger). Never mind that he was right. But Konstanze and Brenner are not done with each other yet: Konstanze’s husband recently died, believed to be a suicide. But Konstanze is sure that he was murdered because he spoke up about the sexual abuse he suffered from catholic priests when he was a child. She asks Brenner to investigate. Brenner agrees, going about it in his own very idiosyncratic way and uncovering much more than he bargained for.

Silentium is an improvement on the first film in the series in pretty much every aspect, except maybe acting and sense of humor which were already great in the first film and are equally great now. I enjoyed it a lot.

silentium

[SPOILERS]

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Mein blindes Herz [My Blind Heart] (2013)

Mein blindes Herz
Director: Peter Brunner
Writer: Peter Brunner
Cast: Christos Haas, Jana McKinnon, Susanne Lothar, Georg Friedrich, Robert Schmiedt

Plot:
Kurt (Christos Haas) suffers from Marfan syndrome which has taken almost all of his sight and caused various other disabilities in him. After the death of his mother (Susanne Lothar) or maybe even before that, Kurt becomes unhinged. He behaves inappropriately at a home for the mentally disabled (where he’s staying) and gets thrown out. With the last tether to his existence so far severed, he finds himself an abandoned apartment to stay at, together with runaway Conny (Jana McKinnon). But ultimately Kurt is at war with his own body and existence.

Mein blindes Herz is an artsy movie and just so you don’t miss that fact, it’s got a difficult topic matter, it works with metaphors and it’s shot in black and white. That probably isn’t everyone’s thing and it didn’t work well for me. Mostly I just thought that it was too long, despite the many things it had going for it.

meinblindesherz

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Über-Ich und Du [Superegos] (2014)

Über-Ich und Du
Director: Benjamin Heisenberg
Writer: Benjamin Heisenberg, Josef Lechner
Cast: Georg Friedrich, André Wilms, Margarita Broich, Maria Hofstätter, Elisabeth Orth

Plot:
Nick (Georg Friedrich) is in trouble and needs to disappear for a bit. Through a friend he is sent to a house in the countryside that’s supposed to be empty. But when Nick arrives there he finds renouned but very old psychoanalyst Curt Ledig (André Wilms) there. When Nick is mistaken for somebody who is supposed to take care of Curt while he prepares for a big conference, Nick jumps at the chance. Only Curt sees right through him and decides to analyze Nick, in secret. At least at first.

Über-Ich und Du (which btw. is a wonderful pun in German as it means”Superego and You” but also “About Me and You”) is an entertaining film with great leads that runs a little too long (despite not actually being that long).

ueberichunddu

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Stereo (2014)

Stereo
Director: Maximilian Erlenwein
Writer: Maximilian Erlenwein
Cast: Jürgen Vogel, Moritz Bleibtreu, Petra Schmidt-Schaller, Georg Friedrich, Rainer Bock, Adrian Can, Mark Zak

Plot:
Erik (Jürgen Vogel) leads a rather quiet life as a mechanic together with his girlfriend Julia (Petra Schmidt-Schaller) and her daughter. But then one day caravans arrive and with the caravans a bit of Erik’s past catches up with him in the form of Henry (Moritz Bleibtreu). Henry might not be entirely real but that doesn’t make him any less threatening to everything Erik has built up.

Stereo is an entertaining film with good pacing. I did have some issues with it – mainly its treatment of the Roma in the film and the misogynistic language sometimes used – but it was enjoyable enough that I didn’t even mind that I foresaw the biggest plot twist.

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Nachtlärm [Lullaby Ride] (2012)

Nachtlärm [literally: Night Noise]
Director: Christoph Schaub
Writer: Martin Suter
Cast: Alexandra Maria Lara, Sebastian Blomberg, Georg Friedrich, Carol Schuler, Andreas Matti

Plot:
Livia (Alexandra Maria Lara) and Marco (Sebastian Blomberg) are exhausted. Their little baby Tim just won’t stop crying and doesn’t sleep unless they go for long drives through the entire night. During one such a drive though, their car gets stolen by small-time crook Jorge (Georg Friedrich) and his new girlfriend Claire (Carol Schuler) – with Tim still in the car. Livia and Marco in turn steal a car to follow them and that’s the kick-off to one crazy night.

Oh people, the things I watch for Georg Friedrich… sometimes I hate myself for it. Nachtlärm is pretty uninspired and at 94 minutes still way too long. But Georg Friedrich does his usual thing so very well that at least you can get some enjoyment out of that.

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