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24 Wochen

The somewhat organized life of stand-up comedian Astrid is shattered when she finds out that not everything is alright with the child she’s expecting. What follows is a painful journey through increasingly worse diagnoses until the question of ...

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Making jokes is Astrid’s (Julia Jentsch) job. As a stand-up comic she appears on professional stages and national TV shows and is in a well-balanced relationship with her life partner (Bjarne Mädel) who is also her manager. The couple and their nine year old daughter’s safe haven is a small villa in the surrounding area.
Their orderly happiness gets disrupted with the news that not everything is alright with the child Astrid is expecting. What follows is a painful journey of worsening diagnoses and the resulting endurance test for the relationship between her partner, her daughter, and her social and professional circles. It’s a navigation on fateful terrain filled with medical possibilities and consequences as well as cultural attitudes and beliefs that is exponentiated by the fact that the comedian is denied the right to deal with this issue in private.
While Astrid’s family and friends are played by professional actors, the film takes a semi-documentary approach when it comes to the medical advice and decisions: the medical, therapeutic experts are played by non-actors. That’s one of the strategies with which the film nears a candid approach on the 24 WOCHEN’s theme: the question of whether Astrid, knowing that her child will have a severe disability with all the consequences that entails, should get a late-stage abortion.
Astrid asks a midwife what she would do in her place and she says that it is a decision you can only make when you have to and that there is no judgment. This expresses the credo of the film. Anna Zohra Berrached tries to get as close as possible to Astrid’s dilemma in her second film without a didactic presentation of all the pros and cons, but rather a skillful and effective use of creative means to show the emotional impact of such an impossible situation.

Sebastian Markt

Translation: Elinor Lewy

Credits

Deutschland 2016, 102 min
Genre: Drama
Director: Anne Zohra Berrached
Author: Anne Zohra Berrached, Carl Gerber
DOP: Friede Clausz
Montage: Denys Darahan
Music: Jasmin Reuter
Distributor: Neue Visionen
Cast: Julia Jentsch, Bjarne Mädel, Emilia Pieske
FSK: 12
Release: 22.09.2016

Website
IMDB

Screenings

Screenings

  • OV Original version
  • OmU Original with German subtitles
  • OmeU Original with English subtitles

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