|Starring:||Klaus Maria Brandauer, Ildiko Bansagi|
|Genres:||Drama, World Cinema|
|Run time:||2 hours 19 minutes|
|Rental release:||14 Aug 2006|
Most helpful review
A superb filmBy a customer from London , 04 Jan 2009
[Highly rated reviewer]It is difficult to have empathy with any of the main characters but this is a chilling and beautiffully studied depiction of the ease with which complicity in evil can be entered into.
The Faustian pact is not written in a moment of drama but born of compromise, delusion and self deceit.
This is a film that will engage you long after you have viewed it.
It is also a film that is a masterpiece.
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This is one to buy.By Fandauer (4 reviews) , 24 Feb 2012This has to be my most favourite film ever. I first came to watch it years ago after being snared by Klaus Maria Brandauer's charisma in Never Say Never Again, and recently came back to it as part of my son's education in history. It is just about OK for an intelligent 13 year old to watch but there is one VERY raunchy sex scene with female but not male nudity.
It is a HUGE performance from Brandauer and having seen him be (more or less) himself in a documentary recently, I think he poured a lot of his own soul into it. After all, he is an actor playing an actor, what is his main source of inspiration going to be? When his character's career begins to really take off and we see him in all sorts of snippets of roles, he is really romping. I fall at his feet in admiration, it is the performance of a lifetime. But the film itself is massively artistic too and bears repeated viewings - buy it!
what ? hellBy juradino (815 reviews) from London , 18 Nov 201120s turn to 30as in medieval Europe where masks are reversed. Ambitious actor turns from communist to fascist and wonders what got him to act it first place...
Not as good as the playBy Kulturmonster (59 reviews) from Ipswich , 11 Nov 2011
THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS Show review anywayHideIf I had not been aware of the play from which this film was adapted I might well have liked it more, but unfortunately the film does not have anything like the intensity of the stage drama. Although I don't remember much about the play, having seen it over 30 years ago, I do recall the impact it left me with and the film does not match. Also, it has toned down some of the more extreme elements of the story - in the play the main protagonist is involved in a sado-masochistic relationship with a prostitute and this is conveniently left out. A good film, but given that so many films now deal with this period of history it could have been better.
As thought provoking as you want it to be....By ash53 (53 reviews) from newbury , 20 Jul 2011I saw this when it was released during my pretentious 'art cinema' days - watching it now as a grown up was a revelation. Not only is Klaus Maria Brandauer's performance staggering but his on screen charisma is amazing. The photography is increasingly claustrophobic and the scene editing more and more frenetic as he becomes more and more enmeshed in the need to preserve his own greatness.
Of course there is an anti Nazi message because we know NOW that they became the bad guys - but when they started out - disregarding a few bully boy tactics here and there they seemed the people to know so in that respect the film mirrors a certain reality taking place in peoples minds at the time until - like the Brandauer character the only way to preserve yourself is to turn a blind eye to the escalating horrors and become an accomplice by default - and all this cleverly depicted in the small world of German theatre. In the end it does become a battle of survival where survival depends on sinkling further and further into denial.
A great film - as thought provoking as you want it to be - or just visually stunning with some incredible acting.
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Solid & thoughtful, but not a lot of funBy OldTom (49 reviews) from Berkhamsted , 04 Dec 2010The lead actor is utterly believable, but hes playing a pretty unpleasant character. In fact its difficult to identify with any of the main characters, which (to me) is the main drawback to a good film. It is rather heavy-going, but, given the title, you wouldnt expect it to be a comedy. It was presumably made on a small budget, so feels rather like a film of a stage production.