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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
I wasn't thinking much about this film when I saw it was to be on t.v, however after the first ten minutes or so i was hooked, me and my boyfriend, although desperate for sleep were even more desperate to watch this. The storyline was deeply disturbng and although I know many people find the german language unappealing I am fascinated by it. I find german films awfully interesting and their stories are always complex and full of meaning. Though not the most cheerful of plots the acting was intense, powerful and brilliant.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon 20 September 2013
If you can get over the fact that this film is in German with English subtitles you could be well rewarded,as it's so clever and absorbing.
Yes there are issues such as the odd ending but overall it's in the mould of Seven - 2 Disc Set [DVD] and The Silence of the Lambs [DVD] [1991].

In Silence the prisoner Hannibal Lector is the catalyst that leads the FBI to the conclusion of their manhunt for 'Buffalo Bill';

In Seven,the prisoner 'John Doe' is the instrument whom concludes the enactment of the last two 'deadly sins';

Here Andre Hennicke,an imprisoned serial killer,cleverly maniplates all those around him to scrutinize the evidence relating to the murder of a little girl:did he do it,or was it someone closer to the detective interviewing him?

The performances of Anthony Hopkins and Kevin Spacey made the previous two films into classic thrillers.

Hennicke does the same here,from the exciting opening sequence when he is apprehended naked by the police through to the witty,infinately careful interogations by various police handlers.

Good supporting performances throughout by all the actors.

I wonder if the director,Christian Alvart,will ever make something as brilliant as this again?So far,no.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 5 February 2008
Though it threatens to become slightly tedious around the half way mark - when it momentarily looses itself amid the 'good/bad' polemic, which otherwise adds poignancy and intrigue to the perversion - Antibodies sustains a continual and stylish air of mystery, terror and uncertainty as it swings back and forth between a rural German village and a high security prison unit.

One of the most realistic and probing psychological thrillers available.

The cinematography, acting performances and narrative are all first class.

If you like your incisions and your narratives extra deep then don't hesitate to watch this film!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 29 October 2007
Same level as Seven or the Silence of the Lamb. It is clever and full of surprises. Suspense is built on your misandurstanding of what's going on, you think you discovered clues, actually you've been tricked everytime, the killer is not only playing with the police but with you too. Quality
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 14 August 2011
Just watched Antibodies last night and was really blowen away by the powerhouse performances given by all the cast
the plot is magnificent and delivers breathtaking twists that will blow you away and it never gets boring.....I was stunned and couldnt keep my eyes off of it!!! BRILLIANT JUST WHAT A THRILLER SHOULD BE LIKE.......THERE COULDNT BE A BETTER SERIAL KILLER FILM MADE IT BEATS SILENCE OF THE LAMBS BY FAR
IF YOU ARE IN TO THRILLERS WITH A SHOCKING DISCOVERY THEN THIS IS THE ONE FOR YOU!!!!!
DONT MISS THIS ONE JUST BUY IT AND YOU WONT REGRET IT
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 4 April 2007
Almost everyone agrees that the greatest cinematic serial killer ever committed to the big screen is without a doubt Hannibal Lector. Well, finally someone has given us a more believable and much more disturbing serial killer than the pantomime villainy of Lector in the shape of Gabriel Engel.

Engel (a wonderfully intense, disturbing and at times gleefully sadistic turn by the utterly compelling Andre Hennicke), is a serial killer who is finally cornered and captured by the Police at the very start of the film in a superbly directed piece of action cinema. Incarcerated and interviewed by the Police, Engels begins to confess (in graphic detail) to a series of sex crimes and murders involving young boys. Before long, a rural cop Michael Martins (Wotan Wilke Mohring) becomes intrigued in the case, as Engels may be involved in the horrific murder of a young girl in his little town. Martins needs to find the killer as the suspicions that are falling on the towns folk are causing him no end of problems (particularly from his spectacularly nasty father in law, who sees Martins as a loser, and loves needling and belittling him).

In a relationship at first reminiscent of Silence of the Lambs, Martins begins interviewing Engels, hoping to gain some insight into who it was murdered the young girl. However, Engels is a sadistic genius even when incarcerated, and his encounters with Martins soon begin to affect the deeply religious man, sowing seeds of doubt about his fellow villagers, his son and even his own mind, and subtly altering his behaviour (graphically portrayed in a particularly brutal sex scene). As Engels begins to worm his way into Martins brain, the film heads for a nail biting conclusion that keeps you on the edge of your seat right to the end.

The cast are uniformly good, with Mohring giving his portrayal of Martins an air of a good man in a terrible situation, whilst as his big city liaison Sieler, Hienz Hoening is both world weary and brutal, and occasionally very witty indeed, but this is Andre Hennickes film. As Engels he is utterly riveting, and dominates every scene he is in, whether trying to evade the cops at the beginning of the film or verbally sparring with his captors whilst in his cell, and we the viewers are unable to take our eyes of him, as he succeeds in making a totally repellent human being fascinating.

Written and directed by Christian Alvert, this film will no doubt draw unfair comparisons to Silence of the Lambs, but this is a much more restrained affair, dealing with the very nature of evil in its many forms and never once slackens of nor cops out.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Only the second film by the former editor of the legendary German movie fanzine X-TRO, Antibodies (aka: Antikörper) is an assured and suspenseful work which, while it willingly acknowledges its obvious indebtedness to Hollywood models, still manages to strikes out convincingly on its own. The most obvious inspiration behind Christian Alvart's film is The Silence Of The Lambs (1991), to which explicit and grimly affectionate allusion ("What did you expect? Hannibal Lecter?") is made by killer Gabriel Engel (André Hennicke) at one point early on during his captivity. Restrained in conditions which recall those featuring in Jonathan Demme's movie, visited too by a similarly awed and repelled police investigator, Engel actually gives a performance less self-conscious than the much-imitated Anthony Hopkins'. And, because of the latitude of German cinema, where the precise detailing of paedophilic lust rape is more permissible as a drama demands, it is all the more disturbing in the telling. Watching this film, where the principal and community are wracked equally with guilt and blame, one easily recalls that this is the national cinema which earlier produced another monstrous child murderer, that of Fritz Lang's M, and indeed is a country where communal guilt is never very far below the surface.

Just as Clarice Starling needs her Lecter, so Schmizt needs his Engel to help solve a case. Having already killed 14, most of whom were young boys, Engel offers his own tantalising clues and hints as to where the other killer may be found. But, as he says, "Evil... is infectious," and soon Schmizt begins to question his own moral certainties, before ultimately basing his judgement on the only firm foundation he knows - the Old Testament, a process which involves a particularly painful scene of self mutilation by way of penance, as well as providing doctrinal justification for the suspenseful final scenes.

Antibodies is a film which never slackens its tension, and which avoids completely the flabby sentimentalising or overcooked heroics which often mars the American thriller product. Silence Of The Lambs contained more certainties than we are provided with here. Even though it gave its audience an extreme form of serial killer, in the form of 'Buffalo Bill', one both flamboyant and rock inspired, it instantly made a stereotype of itself, and it was this 'respect' of sorts by the audience that the director has said he was keen to avoid. Like Silence Of The Lambs, Se7en and the rest of their bloodline, Antibodies parades a notable killer's lair of its own as well, although any artefacts on show are less disturbing than the ultimate meaning of the 14 red squares drawn by Engel on the wall, or the spare, clean white tiles of his torture room.

At the centre of such films is inevitably a duel between killer and cop, and here the two main parts receive terrific performances, Hennicke mightily disturbing as the gloating and manipulative serial killer, writing his books of blood, and Reedus drawn and haunted as the cop on the edge. As is often the case in this sort of film, a troubled parallel is drawn between them, a process highlighted in the first instance by a change in Reedus' lovemaking, as one whose psyche is increasingly affected by the killer's manipulative mind games. And when the depressed cop buys a suit on impulse, from a shop woman with whom he later sleeps in aggressive fashion, we are reminded of how moral codes can be put and 'worn' almost as one would clothes, until one "can't tell where the suit ends and the man begins." But by the same mark are never the less separate, and can be peeled back to reveal the real creature underneath, or changed at will.

The signs that accompany the disturbed personality are more than just at that mundane level however. We are reminded in this film of the "'Holy Trinity' of serial killers: playing with fire, tormenting animals and bed-wetting" - some signs of which the tortured cop discovers, with growing alarm, occurring within his own family. As mentioned above, a strong religious thread runs through the film, of which this is only another aspect. Schmizt's family are devoted church-going folk, bible quotations play an especial significance and at one point the cop seeks to make his confession. But God's benign influence is ultimately conspicuous by its absence rather than influence, the final resolution less due to any supernatural grace than human doubt. In fact, in interview, director Alvart has expressed his serial killer in terms of the criminal representing 'total doubt', whilst drawing a parallel between religious fanaticism and the extremes of criminal behaviour, each with their respective compulsions.

In short, Antibodies is well worth seeking out, as a serial killer film that's both thought provoking and reasonably gripping - and can also be taken as a possible antidote to Hannibal Rising. Alvart is clearly a talent to watch (his previous, and first film, Curiosity And The Cat (1999) was a little seen - at least in the UK - but well thought of suspense flick, that also featuring corroding suspicion and sadomasochistic overtones). One hopes to see more of his work.
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on 4 July 2010
After a police operation catches serial killer Gabriel Engel in the act, a small town police investigator named Michael Martens is sent to interrogate him in custody as he believes Engel may be involved with the unsolved murder of a 12 year old girl from Martens own small close knit village.
As the series on interrogations get under way it's not long before Engel begins playing mind games with his interrogator until Martens cannot tell if the answers he's getting are fact or fiction, and it's not long before Engel has even those close to Martens under suspicion of the child's murder.
This is an excellent German thriller very much in the style of 'Silence of the lambs' in which the interrogator is very much psychological and intellectual inferior of his prisoner. Intelligent and absorbing this is a thriller which is gripping from beginning to end.
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on 6 March 2013
This is a "Seven, Silence of the Lambs / Manhunt" hybrid in a German setting. Although the serial killer story has been done many times before this is well worth seeing as inevitaby the European style of film making brings a certain grittiness that you don't get from the US.

The surprising connection between the main characters unravels slowly and creates a queasy tension as the tale plays out towards an unusual finale which has been criticised by others and could have been done better in my view. But I still recommend this film
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on 29 October 2007
Same level as Seven or the Silence of the Lamb. It is clever and full of surprises. Suspense is built on your misandurstanding of what's going on, you think you discovered clues, actually you've been tricked everytime, the killer is not only playing with the police but with you too. Quality
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