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Tourism invades the remote Tyrolean mountain world of an occult Christian and her disturbed son. The film of Haneke student Peter Brunner is crude and distressing, but also a deeply impressive mixture of FUNNY GAMES, THE EXORCIST and HEIDI.


LUZIFER is the fourth feature film of Austrian director Peter Brunner and is based on an unspecified true story. LUZIFER isn‘t about the faithful portrayal of events, instead, Brunner, who was taught by Michael Haneke, delivers a crude and distressing film that is also a deeply impressive mixture of FUNNY GAMES, THE EXORCIST and HEIDI.

Former alcoholic and now occult Christian Maria (Susanne Jensen) and her adult son Johannes (Franz Rogowski) live in the Tyrolean mountains. Their days consist of milking cows, washing off their sins and listening to metal. Johannes, who is developmentally challenged, possibly due to the isolation and a violent childhood, also goes to a self-made shack to tend to different birds, whose piercing but impenetrable gaze symbolically accompany the film. Their self-contained world – you can‘t really call it a rural idyll – is broken one day by the mafia-like tourism industry. Instead of the holy spirit, it is now drones and helicopters that fly over the mountains and Maria and Johannes‘ steadfastness is tested more and more.

This is not a predictable narrative about testing faith or capitalist invasion and nature‘s revenge, however. Instead, Maria and Johannes fall deeper and deeper into their comforting and relentless world of fanatic faith which doesn‘t distinguish between God and the devil, tests and salvation. LUZIFER isn‘t carried b< its plot, but the impressionist images of foggy Alps, fluttering birds and whispered prayers as well as Rogowski‘s exceptional acting.

Yorick Berta

Translation: Elinor Lewy


Österreich 2021, 103 min
Genre: Drama
Director: Peter Brunner
Author: Peter Brunner
DOP: Peter Flinckenberg
Montage: Peter Brunner
Music: Tim Hecker
Distributor: drop-out Cinema
Cast: Franz Rogowski, Susanne Jensen
Release: 28.04.2022




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

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