Floriane Daniel

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Cherry Blossoms Review


OK
A beautiful tissue-paper piece of art that falls to shreds should you so much as blow upon it, Dorris Dörrie's Cherry Blossoms is the kind of film that dares you to laugh at it. There are heartfelt declarations of love and elaborate avant-garde dance routines, not to mention a major plot point about a mountain appearing from behind a veil of mist. Cynics: Don't venture within one hundred meters. Romantics: Run, don't walk, to the theater. Everybody else: Approach with caution.

Cherry Blossoms is a sentimental work about Rudi, a stick-in-the-mud German civil servant whose life is upended upon the sudden death of his wife, Trudi, whom he realizes too late he never quite knew. Yes, tears will be shed. But since this is a German film, much of which is set in Japan, the crying will be rather circumspect, and horribly embarrassed.

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Wintersleepers Review


Good
Sweeping shots of snowcapped mountains, displayed against a thumping techno beat and cut in with introductory shots of various characters (complete with their names appearing on screen) packing up to go somewhere might give one the impression that Wintersleepers is about a heist. The momentum builds like wildfire in these opening sequences as the phrase 'Are you really leaving today' echoes throughout the various departures happening across the board. This momentum quickly dies, as does the hope for any bank robbing scenarios. What comes in its place is a much slower film which lumbers along (painstakingly at times) to a crisp, almost haunting close.

Tom Tykwer, the German director who exploded onto the international scene with Run Lola Run brings this odd story of mistaken identity and deathly fate to the screen with an awkward, but in some ways rewarding, slant.

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Winter Sleepers Review


Weak

Cashing in on the notoriety of German wunderkind Tom Tykwer's innovative, influential and brilliantly kinetic "Run Lola Run," a small American releasing house called Winstar Cinema has unleashed this week the director's shivery 1997 psychological roundelay entitled "Winter Sleepers."

The film tracks the subconscious domino effect of a terrible car accident on an icy mountain road that leaves a little girl hospitalized and on the verge of death.

Her destitute farmer father (Josef Bierbichler) becomes obsessed with identifying the drunken driver that collided with their car. All he remembers of the man -- who walked away after his auto flew off the road -- is that he had an frightful scar on the back of his head, partially hidden by his hair.

Continue reading: Winter Sleepers Review

Floriane Daniel

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