Inspired by the double-suicide of Heinrich von Kleist and Henriette Vogel, Jessica Hausner (HOTEL, LOURDES) recounts the love-death story as an extreme stylized and amusing experiment.
AMOUR FOU, the new film by Jessica Hausner (LOURDES, HOTEL), is a loosely based on the love and death story of Heinrich von Kleist and Henriette Vogel, who committed a double suicide on November 21, 1811 am Kleinen Wannsee, a suburb of Berlin. As always Hausner deals in meticulously composed tableaux in which the protagonists stand in front of beautiful wallpaper as though they have to stay still for a picture to be taken. The young poet Heinrich von Kleist (Christian Friedel) cracks under this lovely yet stifling orderliness with his wild stories about violence and love and his unconventional idea to convince a woman to enter a suicide pact with him. After his cousin Marie rejects his proposal, Kleist asks Henriette Vogel (Birte Schnöink), the obedient wife of a government official who also initially refuses. When she is diagnosed with a terminal illness, she reconsiders Kleist’s death fantasy. While Kleist looked for a willing victim to follow him unconditionally, it appears that Henriette is dreaming of carrying out at least one wild gesture in her lifetime. We hear much talk of freedom in AMOUR FOU, from personal freedom to political freedom to discussions of emancipating the peasants and the introduction of a general tax. Hausner presents the suicide pact less as an ultimate act of love than an individual act of freedom or delusion. In contrast, love hardly shows its face.
Österreich 2014, 96 min
Director: Jessica Hausner
Author: Jessica Hausner
DOP: Martin Gschlacht
Montage: Karina Ressler
Distributor: NEUE VISIONEN
Cast: Sandra Hüller, Stephan Grossmann, Christian Friedel, Birte Schnöink
- OV Original version
- OmU Original with German subtitles
- OmeU Original with English subtitles
ALLE ANGABEN OHNE GEWÄHR.
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